I was born in Blackburn and have lived in either Blackburn or Darwen all my life. I’m married with two grown up sons and three granddaughters. My professional background has been in the education sector where I have undertaken the roles of secondary school teacher, local authority teacher adviser, senior lecturer in higher education, executive director of Lancashire Area West Training and Enterprise Council and, until my retirement in 2007, Director of post 16 education and training for East Lancashire with the Learning and Skills Council for England. I was an associate inspector with OFSTED and have also been a secondary school governor for over 15 years.
In 2008 I was appointed as a non executive director for Blackburn with Darwen Primary Care Trust. Since 2012 I have acted as a lay adviser to Blackburn with Darwen Clinical Commissioning Group with a particular focus on public and patient engagement and quality, performance and effectiveness. Whilst respecting the professional expertise within the NHS, I also believe that a critical component of its future success will be to develop greater and more effective engagement with its service users and the general public. I believe that all members of Healthwatch have a vital role to play in making this a reality.