Fulfilled living in later life
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Our People

Trustees

The Board of Trustees is responsible for supervising the management and administration of the charity. The Board meets four times a year, and provides strategic leadership, counsel and advice to the Executive Team. When required, Pilgrims' Friend Society will appoint new members to its Trustee Board.

Michael Abbott

Michael Abbott

Chairman of Trustees

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Michael is married to Vicky and they have two children and four grandchildren. He retired from his career as a Chartered Town Planner in 2019.

Michael has been involved with Dorothea Court in Bedford since 1996, when he was first invited to lead a Sunday service in the home. In 2004 he became a Trustee of the Dorothea Trust, which previously ran the home, and was instrumental in handing the work over to Pilgrim Homes in 2008. He then became a Trustee of the Society until 2013 and, after a break, rejoined the board at the end of 2019.

Michael supports two churches: Providence Baptist Church in Bedford and a new church work in the Wixams just outside Bedford. He also preaches regularly at other churches and in the open air.

Alan Copeman

Alan Copeman

Vice Chair

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Alan Copeman is a chartered surveyor by profession and has recently retired after many years in the industry. He is a member of Pains Hill Chapel, Oxted and a long-standing member of the Grace Baptist Trust Corporation, where he's served as Deputy Chairman and Chairman.

Married to Jackie they have two adult children. He is committed to the work of Pilgrims' Friend Society where he has served since 1995.

Alan enjoys horse riding and gardening.

Dr. Judy Mclaren

Dr. Judy Mclaren

Trustee

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Judy has been a trustee since 2003. Her family has been involved with the Society for many years and she remembers attending fundraising events in her early childhood.

Judy works part-time as a General Practitioner and has a particular interest in the care of the elderly and those with dementia. Knowing the needs of the community in which she works, and then seeing the way that Pilgrims' Friend Society meets such needs in our homes is very rewarding. Our increasing expertise in dementia care is of special importance.

Judy is a member of Westgate Evangelical Free Church, Bury St Edmunds, where her husband Duncan is a deacon. They have three children. Judy has a special interest in our home at Gt Finborough where she chairs the Home Support Group. She has been involved with the home for more than 20 years.


Genefer Espejo

Genefer Espejo

Trustee

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Married with one son, Genefer is now retired from a long career in Education (a substantial part as a Head Teacher). Now a member of Cheam Baptist Church, Genefer was brought up by a Baptist Minister father and spent many years in Northern Ireland where she grew her faith.

Genefer first became acquainted with Pilgrims' Friend Society through Milward House, where her mother was a resident for many years. She developed a love and understanding of elderly care through her experience with Milward House, and valued the Christian care that her mother received there. Her vision is to do all she can to support PFS in their aims to make the lives of older people, whether in residential care or in the community, richer and more fruitful.

As well as being a Trustee of Pilgrims' Friend Society, Genefer also sits on the Independent Monitoring Board of High Down Prison in Banstead, Surrey.

John Edwards

John Edwards

Trustee

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John was born in Chippenham and studied Economics and Accounting at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. Graduating in 1983 he trained as a Chartered Accountant with what is now the medium sized West End firm, Alliotts.

Marrying Margaret in 1986, John returned to Wiltshire and worked in accountancy for 18 years. Needing a career-break he briefly worked as a driving instructor, before accountancy clients still wishing for his services persuaded him to start his own company and he continues to serve small business clients and have an increasing interest in charity accounts.

In addition to an inevitable interest in the Society’s accounts, John has a broad overview of the society’s care home operations through the involvement of his family. His mother, Betty, was a member of the Bath and District Auxiliary when funds were being raised for the Bristol and Chippenham homes, became a care worker when the Chippenham home opened in 1974, was a home visitor when she retired and then was a resident, first of the flats and then, as her needs increased of the care home, working her way through self-funding, local authority funding and continuing health care provision. John’s sister is credited with spotting Framland as a suitable property for the Wantage home when it came on the market in the 1980s and worked there as a member of the senior team.

John and Margaret serve in their local Baptist Church, where John is a deacon and Margaret the treasurer. They have two grown up daughters.

Sheila Warnes

Sheila Warnes

Trustee

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Sheila is a Chartered Health and Safety Professional, with a career in credit, project and quality management. In addition she has inspected several care and nursing facilities in Suffolk in her role as a Healthwatch Suffolk Enter and View Authorised Representative.

In 2015 Sheila came into contact with Pilgrims’ Friend Society while a Trustee for a small Christian care home. Since then she has been involved in their vision of providing quality care for older Christians, becoming a Trustee in 2019.

She attends a Christian assembly in Lowestoft and is particularly involved with children’s work through Sunday school and summer camps.

Andrew Symonds

Andrew Symonds

Vice Chair

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Andrew Symonds is a widower with three children and seven grandchildren, who has been involved with the Society from a very young age. His earliest memories are of singing in the "wards" at the Brighton Home in the late 1940s in the run up to Christmas. His parents were both involved in the Brighton home - his mother as the Lady Visitor and sometimes committee chair person and his father as the Home committee chairman for a number of years, later a trustee of the Society, where he served for many years.

Andrew's great uncle William Falkner was also a trustee of the Society in the early 1920s and his wife a Lady Visitor in the Camberwell Home.

Andrew himself has been a trustee since 2003 and continue to have an active involvement in the Brighton Home.

Sylvia Clovey

Sylvia Clovey

Trustee

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Sylvia worked on the Pilgrims’ Friend Society Marketing and Communications Team until her retirement around three years ago.

Before that, Sylvia had over 25 years’ experience of strategic HR management and consultancy. Sylvia has held various trustee/volunteer positions with charities and community organisations concerned with older people, mental health, homelessness, social care and substance misuse.

Sylvia heard about Jesus from her maternal grandparents, and when she was 15 she gave her life to Christ and was baptised. Sylvia is a member of the Christ Church Leyton PCC and the Communications subcommittee. She assists with children’s and women’s ministries; is a co-leader on Christianity/Hope Explored courses; facilitates one-to-one ministries; and gets involved with other things as they come along!

Mark Curran

Mark Curran

Trustee

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Mark was brought up in Northern Ireland and became a Christian in his early teens. Moving to England to attend Warwick University, Mark joined Canley Community Church in Coventry. He has worshipped there ever since and is now an Elder and leader.

After university, Mark spent 25 years in international business building process plants around the world and travelling extensively. In 2004, Mark moved into the retirement sector, first with the ExtraCare Charitable Trust, building 14 large affordable retirement villages across England, and latterly as Development Director at Anchor, the largest provider of older people's accommodation in England – so he has experienced plenty of encouraging and challenging issues in the older people's sector.

Mark has recently retired. He is married to Karen and they have three married children and nine grandchildren.

Executive Team

Stephen Hammersley CBE

Stephen Hammersley CBE

Chief Executive

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Chief Executive since January 2015, Stephen began his career as a mathematician and worked in the banking industry for 17 years. In 2000 he was appointed a director of Tearfund, with responsibility for its use of business as a tool of development, before his move to UK Community Foundations in 2005. Stephen has enjoyed the company of older people from his student days when he was part of a team that led worship in a care home and visited those who were housebound. The loneliness of older people was one of the key priorities that UK Community Foundations addressed latterly through its award-winning "Surviving Winter" campaigns that Stephen co-ordinated.

Stephen worships at Christ Church Harpenden and for many years ran the Crusaders (Urban Saints) youth group in the town. He still helps occasionally but is now part of the team that reaches out to the residents of a local residential care home.

Stephen is married to Susan and they have three grown-up children.

Julian Hillman

Julian Hillman

Director of Finance

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Having spent much of his working life with tech companies, last year Julian felt a heart to join a Christian charity that makes a difference to the world. He is delighted to be leading the finance team in living out Pilgrims' Friend Society's values of Compassion, Community, Transparency and Excellence.

Julian and his wife Debbie and have been at Christ Church Ewell since 2015. They have three grown-up girls who they love spending time with. Julian also loves long distance walking, Tottenham Hotspur, and chocolate!

Alexandra Davis

Alexandra Davis

Director of Marketing & Communications

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Alexandra has been at Pilgrims’ Friend Society as Director of Marketing and Communications since September 2019. Previously she was part of the communications team at the Evangelical Alliance having worked for Release International in the supporter relations team. Alexandra has a Masters degree in Democracy and Democratisation from University College London and spent time with the Baptist Missionary Society in Kosovo. Alexandra is part of the leadership team at her church.

Maureen Sim

Maureen Sim

Director of Operations

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Maureen began her career as a student nurse at the Hammersmith hospital in London. After she qualified she specialised in coronary care until she married and moved to Leicestershire, where she worked for a number of years for Leicestershire Health Authority as a Health Education Officer.

When Maureen’s children were very young she led the children’s and young people’s work in her Church in Sileby, Leicestershire. She also worked for a nursing agency which sent her regularly to the Pilgrim Home in Evington, Leicester. The one thing that Maureen never wanted to do was work with older people. God obviously had other ideas and although it took the manager of the home at least a year to persuade Maureen to take a permanent position at the Evington home, she did eventually agree.

Maureen worked for a number of years as a night nurse and when the administrator left she offered to help out with the administration. This eventually became a full time job and a short while later she was offered the Managers post. After managing the Evington home for seven years she was offered the post of Director of Operations, overseeing all the homes. Over the years Maureen has seen the homes through many changes and difficult challenges and is so grateful that she works for a Christian organisation where the work is surrounded by prayer.

Hugh Lambourne

Hugh Lambourne

Director of Property Services

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Hugh is a Chartered Surveyor, Chartered Builder, and member of the Institute of Customer Service, with a 35-year career in construction and property. He has been a Christian since his teens and after a year volunteering for a church in Huddersfield and several years working in London and abroad, has spent most of his working life in social housing. He has held various senior roles in Housing Associations and Local Authorities, with a recent role as Managing Director for a property management company in the retirement sector.

Hugh, who has four children, moved from Dorset to North Wales this summer to be nearer his wife Sally’s family in Snowdonia and they have recently started worshipping at St Catherine and St John’s Church in Old Colwyn.

Joshua Field

Joshua Field

Director of Human Resources

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Josh has been Director of Human Resources at Pilgrims' Friend Society since March 2021, having previously led the HR function for Tasty PLC who operated over 60 casual dining restaurants. Josh has been familiar with the work of Pilgrims' Friend Society due to family and friends who had both worked with and been supporters of the charity. He is delighted to be in a role where he can support our teams in creating environments of love, care, and flourishing. After graduating from Loughborough University Josh volunteered with University Christian College Fellowship (UCCF) for a year on their relay programme, he is part of the leadership team at Christ Church Leyton where he has been a member since 2013. Josh is married with three young children and enjoys playing and watching almost all types of sport!

Operations Team

Barbara Margetts

Barbara Margetts

Assistant Director of Operations

Neal Shelton-Green

Neal Shelton-Green

Assistant Director of Operations

Paul Reynolds

Paul Reynolds

Assistant Director of Commercial

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Paul has a mixed background of property and housing management with 20 years in social housing and retirement leasehold management. He has held senior operational positions managing large nationwide portfolios of retirement, sheltered and extra care housing schemes. He is experienced in organisational development, scheme budgets, finance, and compliance management.

Paul looks forward to meeting everyone and delivering the Executive Team's ambition for added focus in our commercial activities.

Margaret Wetton

Margaret Wetton

Operations Manager

Lynn Hall

Lynn Hall

Operations Manager

Jane Trimarco

Jane Trimarco

Operations Manager

Friederike Hamilton

Friederike Hamilton

Site Operations Manager

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Friederike joined Pilgrims' Friend Society in February 2022 after 35 years in the health service working as a nurse, midwife and health visitor. Friederike is an Operations Manager and also leads the organisation's work in the provision of excellent care and dementia care (The Way We Care). Friederike works with The Way We Care Leads in the homes to support all staff to deliver high standards of care and continually improve practice. Friederike supports staff in delivering high quality dementia care by providing training and advice.

Friederike is married to Nigel and they have 2 grown-up sons and a dog. She enjoys walking and gardening. Friederike and Nigel worship at Widcombe Baptist Church in Bath where they are also on the children’s team and home group leaders.

Carol Jackson

Carol Jackson

Operations Manager

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Carol joined the Operations Team, November 2022. Carol lives in Devon and trained as a nurse. She has experience in inspection and was the Registered Manager of an ‘Outstanding’ home. She enjoys walking, pets, eating out and jewellery making.

Stuart Bull

Stuart Bull

Housing Operations Manager

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Stuart joined the Operations Team in November 2023. With 11 years of experience as a Senior Operations Manager in the purpose-built student accommodation sector, Stuart has enhanced his skills in operations management, compliance, coaching, mentoring, and leadership.

Stuart is a father to three girls. Outside of the work environment, he is a keen sports fan, with Notts County being his favourite football team, causing him more stress and anguish than his three girls combined!

Stuart is actively engaged in his local church community. He has been involved in the prison ministry team and the compassion team, where he helps reach out and provide food, clothing, and furniture to the city's most vulnerable residents.

Marketing & Communications Team

Alexandra Davis

Alexandra Davis

Director of Marketing & Communications

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Alexandra has been at Pilgrims’ Friend Society as Director of Marketing and Communications since September 2019. Previously she was part of the communications team at the Evangelical Alliance having worked for Release International in the supporter relations team. Alexandra has a Masters degree in Democracy and Democratisation from University College London and spent time with the Baptist Missionary Society in Kosovo. Alexandra is part of the leadership team at her church.

Helen McKay-Ferguson

Helen McKay-Ferguson

Communications Manager

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Helen has been with Pilgrims' Friend Society since March 2020. She has a Postgraduate Diploma in Journalism Studies from Cardiff University and has worked in comms for a number of charities, including The Children's Literacy Charity.

Among other things, Helen edits The Pilgrims' Magazine, oversees social media and acts as a first contact for press. Her favourite part of her role is finding stories about our work and ensuring they gain wider media attention, as with ITV's coverage of our intergenerational nativity.

Outside of work, Helen enjoys outdoor swimming and learning German. She is part of the church family at ChristChurch, Crouch End.

Helen Rackham

Helen Rackham

Head of Fundraising

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An experienced director, specialising in income generation, Helen has led funding teams across a range of settings including health, social care, and education in both commercial and voluntary sector organisations. She is committed to adopting a collaborative and coordinated response to securing funding, ensuring that a diversified income base is secured, supported by a high positive profile.

Helen lives in a beautiful rural village in East Suffolk, a wonderfully understated county. Her healthy hobby is gardening which allows her to connect with nature and enjoy the seasons. Music plays a huge part in her life and she loves attending live concerts.

Louise Morse

Louise Morse

Author and Speaker

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Louise has been with Pilgrims’ Friend Society since 2000, working first as publicity manager, producing all our marketing materials. In 2008 she published her first book (Lion Hudson) that described living with dementia within a Christian context. Altogether she has published six books (Lion Hudson and SPCK), and gives talks and training to churches and faith groups. She holds regular Zoom meetings and also writes a monthly E-Send with news of developments in dementia and health of older people.

Louise is an experienced cognitive behavioural therapist, with a Master’s degree on the effects of dementia on family caregivers.

To find out more, visit our Louise Morse hub.