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Our Board of Trustees

St Oswald's is governed by its Board of Trustees. Members are appointed for a four year term and undertake the role of Trustee on a voluntary basis. Trustees are recruited from a range of professions and bring with them a blend of experience and expertise in their field, as well as an external perspective.

Meet our Trustees

Trustees play a vital role in the success of St Oswald’s. They add real value to the existing Hospice Management Team, ensuring that the strategic aims, objectives and direction of the charity are established and met.

The Board of Trustees meets on alternate months each year and each meeting focuses on an element of the Strategic Framework - which outlines the strategic direction of the organisation for the next three years.

Marie Liston

Chair of St Oswald’s Hospice Ltd

Member of the Nomination and Remuneration Committee

Marie has been involved with St Oswald’s since 1999, when she was appointed as a Trustee, retiring after the maximum 8 years service. Marie then joined St Oswald’s Hospice Promotions Limited (SOHP) as an Independent Director and has continued to work with SOHP to date. Marie was appointed Vice Chair of St Oswald’s in 2017 and Chair in 2018.

For the last 17 years Marie has worked for ScS Group plc, the national chain of sofa and carpet retailers. She is the Group’s Corporate Service Director and has responsibility for Customer Services, Estates, HR & Training, Internal Audit, Safety and Compliance.

A keen fencer, Marie has competed at national and international level and was also involved in governance for the sport, retiring by rotation as President of England Fencing in March 2018.

Julie Harrison

Vice Chair of St Oswald’s Hospice Ltd and Chair of St Oswald’s Hospice Promotions Ltd

Member of Board of Trustees

Julie was born and educated in Newcastle upon Tyne, leaving in 1980 to finish her legal studies in London. Julie has practiced law for many years first in the City of London and for the last 25 years in her home town of Newcastle where she is Head of the Banking and Finance Practice of Ward Hadaway. Outside the law, she loves to travel whether it is motor biking through the Dales or roaming through flea markets in Florence, skiing down the Alps or venturing further afield with trips from China to Mexico, although this was curtailed a little when she married Clive in 2006. She has always had a keen eye for clothes, something she and Clive have in common as he has been involved in the menswear industry since 1978.

She acts as a non executive for a local Arts organization.

Julie spends much of her free time with her family including eight nephews and nieces, two sisters and her lovely mother Mary, who was a nurse for 35 years.

Brian Hedley


Member of Board of Trustees

Brian is a Qualified Accountant (C.I.P.F.A.). His professional career started at Newcastle City Council Treasurer's Department in 1974. He then moved to become Finance Manager in Housing Department and then to Tynedale District Council as Chief Accountant in 1982.

In 1986, Brian joined the NHS and the Northern Regional Health Authority as Assistant Director (Financial Planning). He later moved to Northumberland Health Authority in similar role, then re-joined the Northern RHA as Acting Regional Director of Finance.

In 1992, Brian was appointed Director of Finance at South Durham Community Trust based in Darlington and in late 1993 took up post as Director of Finance at Sunderland Health Authority. Following the scrapping of Health Authorities in 2002, he moved to become Director of Finance and Contracting with the North of England NHS Workforce Development Confederation which had a shelf life of two years. Other roles included Acting Director of Finance with Selby and York Primary Care Trust and also Wakefield West PCT.

Post retirement from the NHS, Brian worked for Nomad Housing Group (now part of ISOS Group) as Housing Community Development Manager and for Newcastle City Council Strategic Housing Dept as Housing, Health and Social Care Co-ordinator until 2008.

Kersi Fanibunda

Member of Board of Trustees

My family has had a long association with St Oswald’s. My wife has worked as a volunteer since 1992 and our son did it before her. It is therefore a real pleasure and privilege for me to serve as a Trustee.

I retired as Senior Lecturer and Hon. Consultant of Oral Surgery at the Newcastle Dental School & Hospital and since then I have been invited back on a part time basis. During my career, I have been associated with undergraduate and postgraduate teaching, research, examinerships and several NHS & University committees. I was an elected member of the General Dental Council and served on its Professional Conduct, Health and Education Committees for 12 years. I was also appointed as Subject Specialist Reviewer by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education, which monitors the quality and standards of Dental Schools in the country.

My interests are oil painting, singing and playing bridge.  I am secretary of Newcastle Religious Leaders Group and a member of Friends of the (13th century) Chapel.

Janet Clarke

Member of Audit and Investment Committee

Janet has been involved with St Oswald’s as a volunteer since 2005 working in gardening, fundraising and reception. Highlights are the Northumbria in Bloom awards for our extensive gardens, trekking in Peru and China and being an elf at the Christmas grotto.

Janet retired in 2004 and spent most of her working career in the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry based in Morpeth, with a two-year secondment to Puerto Rico. She held a variety of positions in good manufacturing practice, quality assurance, lean manufacturing and logistics.

Originally from the Wirral, Janet has lived in Morpeth since 1980 and has been a town councillor, school governor and recently retired as a magistrate.

Janet is married to Michael who is an academic and hobbies include running, walking and gardening. She has completed twenty nine Great North Runs and three marathons and hasn’t hung up the running shoes just yet.

Helen Lucraft

Member of Board of Trustees and

Member of the Audit and Finance Committee

I was a Consultant Oncologist in Newcastle from 1984 until my retirement in 2011. My areas of special interest were breast cancer, haematological cancers and radiotherapy for children’s cancers. I was involved in cancer research and teaching of medical students and junior doctors. I served on several national committees, most recently on the Council of the Royal College of Radiologists, when I was a trustee of the College.

I visited St Oswalds weekly for several years from its opening in 1986. I was impressed by the calm, welcoming atmosphere which remains the same. I became a St Oswald's volunteer in 2012, working with medical staff on projects related to clinical performance.

I am a magistrate in Northumberland and a Governor of the Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

I am married to a doctor and we have two daughters and two granddaughters.

Dorothy Clasper

Member of the Clinical Governance and Quality Committee

Member of the Audit and Finance Committee

My working career was in the Civil Service until I retired in 2003. I was involved in training and development of staff.

I joined the Hospice as a volunteer in 2004 working in Human Resources.

In my spare time I enjoy walking especially in the Lake District.

Kim Jobson

Member of Board of Trustees

I started my working life in the Travel Industry undertaking a range of roles within the Thomas Cook Travel Group. My career since that time has spanned both the private and public sectors, and I am currently working as the Head of Human Resources for both Durham County Council and Northumberland County Council, in a new regional partnership arrangement.

I’m a qualified lecturer and for a period worked in Newcastle College delivering lectures and seminars for further and higher education students on a range of topics.

My previous roles in Human Resources include working for the Metropolitan Police, undertaking the role of Head of Organisational Development for Gateshead Council and as Head of Human Resources for Middlesbrough Council in one of the first Public/Private partnerships in the region for the delivery of support services.

My most recent challenge in the HR field was leading the integration of eight County Durham Local Authority’s workforces into one new Unitary Council and managing the associated people issues. I have two grown up children and have lived in the North East for 17 years.

A friend introduced me to the work of St Oswald’s and after a visit to the premises, I was left with the lasting impression of the positive atmosphere that the staff and volunteers have created, leading me to want to try to support in some way with the work that St Oswald’s does.

Christine English

Member of Board of Trustees

My nursing career began in Newcastle over thirty years ago where I initially qualified as an adult nurse before I moved on to specialise in children’s nursing. I have had the privilege of working in a range of exciting roles in the NHS and University which have equipped me to lead, manage and innovate both in clinical care and nurse education. These roles have provided me with excellent learning opportunities and I would hope to be able to use the knowledge and skills I have accumulated over these years within the role as a Trustee.

I moved into nursing education after working as a staff nurse, ward sister and senior nurse. After a number of years in education I decided that I wanted to return to practice and negotiated a secondment as a Senior Matron/Senior Lecturer within Paediatric Oncology (2005-2010). The post was a joint appointment between Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Trust and Northumbria University aimed at providing professional nursing leadership and management whilst developing research capacity within the specialty. The paediatric oncology service included in-patient, out-patient and day patient care as well as palliative and end-of-life care. During my time in this role I played a key role in the planning and successful transfer of services to their new home in the Great North Children’s Hospital.

I am currently employed as a Principal Lecturer (Children’s Nursing) and Director of Outreach and Widening Participation within the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences at Northumbria University. As Principal Lecturer I have leadership and management responsibilities within pre-registration children’s nursing and I teach and research in this area. As Director of Outreach and Widening Participation I have strategic leadership responsibilities across all Departments in the Faculty (Health, Lifesciences, Education, Sports) to ensure successful engagement with local schools and colleges to raise aspirations and widen participation in higher education.

My particular research interests are in quality of care and service user perspectives. I would welcome the opportunity to make a useful contribution to the on-going development of St Oswald's.

David Hicks

Member of Board of Trustees

David Hicks is a key member of the Newcastle tax team in Deloitte, and has been instrumental in helping to build the leading practice we have today.  In particular, his presence in the market as a heavyweight personal tax adviser has seen the team go from strength to strength, both in the region and further afield.

David is a Deloitte ‘lifer’, having joined as a school leaver from a working class family in 1990.  He started his career in the Leeds office, where he gained his CTA qualification, and has been an integral part of the Newcastle office since moving to the North East in 2006.  His talents saw him progress to Director in 2012, and since then he has gone from strength to strength in showcasing not only his own abilities regionally and nationally, but also towards the team as a whole.

In Leeds, David worked in specialist and deep technical team which acted as a center of excellence for the UK business.  As a result his tax talents are principally in problem-solving, and coupled with technical knowledge and his commercial and pragmatic approach, he is a go-to person not only in our own office, but across the national Private Client business as a whole.

For the last four years his reputation has seen him assume the position of ‘tax expert’ to the Daily Mail’s personal finance team on Budget Day, spending the day with the team and helping them to understand and then take the Chancellor’s speech and the Treasury Press Releases to the Mail’s significant readership.

David also takes people development very seriously in the office, being a ‘People Leader’ in Deloitte’s performance management process.  He is responsible for a cohort of 15 or so individuals in the team.

Despite his busy diary, David is also passionate about leading a school partner relationship with Cardinal Hume Catholic School in Gateshead as part of Deloitte’s One Million Futures campaign.

Alison Elsdon

Member of Board of Trustees

I am a CIPFA qualified accountant and have worked in the public sector for nearly 36 years. I have worked in local government since leaving school at 16 years old. I started my career at Blyth Valley Borough Council as a Bonus Clerk and then worked as a Payroll Assistant and then an Accounting Assistant. After seven years at Blyth Valley, I moved to Northumberland County Council as a Senior Accountant where I completed my professional qualification. I have remained at Northumberland and over the years I have been promoted a number of times. I have been fortunate enough to participate in many exciting projects such as implementation of the Oracle ERP system and local government reorganisation, where I was responsible for tightening the finances of the six district councils in Northumberland and the County Council. I currently occupy the post of Service Director: Finance.

I live in Blyth with my husband Ian who is retired, my son, Jonathan and my Bichon Frise, Barney. I like to spend my spare time with my family and friends. I enjoy living close to the beach where I spend a lot of my time walking the dog and just enjoying the fresh air. My husband and I love to holiday abroad, usually somewhere hot.