Your Bridges Team

    Our Core Team

    • Charlotte Peck

      Charlotte Peck

      Head of Operations

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      Charlotte Peck

      Charlotte Peck

      Head of Operations

      Charlotte has almost 10 years of experience working in the field of disability across the charity, education, and health sectors. Her most recent leadership roles include Deputy Director of Operations at a disability charity, leading education and disability employment teams, and Director of a national charity working with health and education teams to improve mobility of children with physical disabilities. She is also a Trustee of a micro-charity in South West London that facilitates social activities for young adults with learning disabilities.

      Having lived experience of a sibling with learning disabilities and a degree in Psychology, Charlotte is driven by organisations that deliver real impact for individuals and their families. She strongly believes in the power of collaboration and learning from everyone’s experiences to deliver meaningful systems change, and in making sure that a lot of fun is had along the way!

    • Clare McCarroll

      Clare McCarroll

      Learning and Development Lead (Maternity Leave)

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      Clare McCarroll

      Clare McCarroll

      Learning and Development Lead (Maternity Leave)

      Clare’s background is as an older person’s physiotherapist with a special interest in dementia. Clare has participated in Bridges workshops and webinars over the years and recently has joined the team in a permanent capacity as Learning and Development Lead. Clare completed her Masters in Clinical Research which focused on the perceptions of the role of physiotherapists who work with people living with dementia in nursing homes. She has a passion to enhance people’s lives through meaningful human connections (using song and dance wherever possible!! ) Clare brings a variety of experiences to the team including acute and community based NHS roles working directly with patients in acute health crises and those with long term conditions. She has also expanded her role to lead interdisciplinary teams and worked across sectors collaborating with creative musical and research experts to design, deliver and develop movement to music projects.

    • Fiona Jones

      Fiona Jones

      CEO and Founding Director

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      Fiona Jones

      Fiona Jones

      CEO and Founding Director

      Fiona combines her work to lead and oversee the direction and quality of Bridges Self-Management with her academic role as Professor of Rehabilitation Research at St George’s University London. Fiona has worked in a variety of clinical roles in acute and community rehabilitation and became interested in self-management research after completing her MSc in 1997 and a PhD in 2005. This led to the development of the Bridges stroke self-management programme. Her work has now extended into many different areas with a focus on advancing the quality of self-management support for different stakeholders and developing programmes suitable for both acute and community healthcare settings.

      The team describe Fiona as being incredibly knowledgeable (but understated), kind and genuine. She is relentlessly optimistic and sees the potential in everything and everyone. Her passion for her work is unmatched and she is always open to new ideas and ways of working; a constantly moving force – likened to a really cool, giant lava lamp!

      She also makes great chocolate brownies and is very fashionable!

    • Jack Ballard-Ridley

      Jack Ballard-Ridley

      PA to Projects and Business Development Manager

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      Jack Ballard-Ridley

      Jack Ballard-Ridley

      PA to Projects and Business Development Manager

      Jack joined Bridges in early 2021 as a support worker for his brother Scott.

      Since then, Jack has embedded himself into a wider support role across the Bridges team, helping with a variety of administrative tasks such as editing videos of the online workshops.

      Outside of work, Jack enjoys developing his knowledge of BBQ as he works towards becoming a grill master.

    • Laura Webbe

      Laura Webbe

      Team Administrator

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      Laura Webbe

      Laura Webbe

      Team Administrator

      I have broad experience in administration, from my first role working in a children’s holiday camp, to a more recent role for an IT company. I love planning and producing processes that make day-to-day work life a little easier for everyone.

      I regularly go for long walks and to the gym. I love a pub quiz, where I go with extended family and have a good catch-up and natter. I often cook and bake for family and close friends, and I enjoy a good book and going to the beach – rain or shine.

    • Paula Otter

      Paula Otter

      Co-Production and Innovation Lead

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      Paula Otter

      Paula Otter

      Co-Production and Innovation Lead

      Paula is an Occupational Therapist in stroke rehabilitation, joining the Bridges team in November 2022 on a 12-month secondment from the NHS.

      Paula has worked for over twenty years, both within the NHS and in the USA, predominantly in the field of neurorehabilitation.  In 2017 she completed a two-year clinical research associate secondment where she spent half her time as the clinical team lead Occupational Therapist for an inpatient stroke service, and the other half completing research into carers’ experiences when visiting the stroke ward.  She then presented this research at the National Stroke Forum Conference 2019.

      Paula has always had a strong interest in collaborative working styles and, after connecting with Bridges a few years ago, was able to secure funding to bring their workshops to teams within her service line.  Participating in the workshops enhanced the way she worked with patients and their families by adopting personalised self-management approaches early on in rehabilitation.

    • Scott Ballard-Ridley

      Scott Ballard-Ridley

      Projects and Business Development Manager

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      Scott Ballard-Ridley

      Scott Ballard-Ridley

      Projects and Business Development Manager

      Scott brings his unique perspective of being a patient, as well as a healthcare professional, to our training and research.  Scott graduated as a Physiotherapist from Keele University in 2006 and shortly afterwards suffered a Stroke, causing significant physical impairment as well as loss of vision. Since his Stroke, Scott has worked in the NHS and voluntary sectors. Scott first found out about the Bridges approach in 2014 whilst working for the Wandsworth Community Neuro team.

      Scott shares his inspiring story in our new Building bridges after stroke book.

      Scott is described by the team as incredibly perceptive, resourceful and patient. He brings an invaluable insight to Bridges and he is everyone’s number one sounding board. He is so humble about all of his achievements and always brings a positive vibe with him – even on a bad day. He is endlessly generous and full of random knowledge that would make him an asset to any pub quiz team. Did we mention his patience?

      Also – our resident office DJ with excellent music choices.

    • Shahina Burnett

      Shahina Burnett

      Learning and Development Lead

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      Shahina Burnett

      Shahina Burnett

      Learning and Development Lead

      Shahina is from a teaching and training background with over 35 years’ experience designing and delivering training solutions for all levels of a business, including face-to-face and online.

      She has delivered training and presented at conferences across the UK, and internationally across Europe, Africa and S.E. Asia.

    Our Clinical Associates

    • Jenny Roe

      Jenny Roe

      Clinical Associate

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      Jenny Roe

      Jenny Roe

      Clinical Associate

      Jenny began her Bridges Self-Management journey in April 2016 as a course participant. Since then she has advanced to the role of Associate Trainer, using her current experience as an NHS Physiotherapist to bring a clinical perspective to the application and implementation of the Bridges principles. Jenny has co-led workshops across acute and community settings in England and Wales. Bridges has transformed the way that she supports patients, communicates and collaborates with colleagues and approaches service developments, for example the impact of subtle changes in language to shape a balanced patient-therapist relationship. “Being part of the Bridges community is inspiring and I am committed and passionate about self-management support being a core component of NHS care throughout”.

    • Karen Coster

      Karen Coster

      Clinical Associate

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      Karen Coster

      Karen Coster

      Clinical Associate

      Following completing the Bridges Self-Management Training in 2012 with the Stroke Team she was working in at the time, Karen developed a particular interest in this approach and began working as a Bridges Associate trainer.

      She has co-led and independently led workshops across London, East Anglia and Ireland including acute and community services and care home teams. She continues to be a ‘Bridges Champion’ in her workplace and enjoys the opportunities that working in this way brings to the patients and staff that she works with as well as influencing team processes to be truly patient centred.

    • Sha Vawda

      Sha Vawda

      Clinical Associate

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      Sha Vawda

      Sha Vawda

      Clinical Associate

      Sha is a South African trained OT who came to England in 1997. She has worked across a variety of mental and physical settings eventually specialising in Neuro rehabilitation for the last 15 years – most of which has been in the community. She has also taught for five years on the OT programme at London South Bank University (LSBU). In 2016/17 she joined Bridges as a trainer, and more recently in a mentoring role for other trainers. She is a mum to two boys and is passionate about reading, learning in all its forms and being outdoors.

    • Sofie Martin

      Sofie Martin

      Clinical Associate

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      Sofie Martin

      Sofie Martin

      Clinical Associate

      Sofie trained as a physiotherapist at St George’s University of London. After graduation she briefly worked for Bridges Self-Management as a research and admin assistant, which is where she completed her Bridges training and began her career long interest in supporting self-management. Moving on to junior rotations at Guys and St Thomas’ and then St George’s Hospital in Tooting, Sofie then specialised in Neurology and Community rehab working in a community neuro team supporting patients with both long-term conditions and in early supported discharge post stroke. Moving across the country from London to Norfolk before finally settling in the Southwest, Sofie has lots of experience embedding Bridges into practice and acting as a Bridges Champion in a wide variety of clinical settings and locations.

    • Katy James

      Katy James

      Clinical Associate

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      Katy James

      Katy James

      Clinical Associate

      Katy has enjoyed a varied career working as a Speech and Language therapist and in leadership roles in NHS hospitals, neurorehabilitation units and community teams, in the charity sector and in independent practice. 

      Her clinical area of interest is working with people with acquired brain injury, particularly focusing on their cognitive-communication skills. Katy enjoys working in partnership with the individual, their families and significant others, focusing on the areas that are of personal importance, and enabling them to feel more confident and knowledgeable about managing their communication changes. 

      She is also a professional supervisor and mentor for Allied Health Professionals and advocates for the importance of clinicians prioritising time for professional reflection and their own self-care. 

      Katy first became aware of Bridges when working at the Wolfson Neurorehabilitation Centre in SW London. The Bridges principles closely align with her own values, and she has always been inspired by the organisation’s co-production approach. 

    • Ruth Woodham

      Ruth Woodham

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      Ruth Woodham

      Ruth Woodham

      Ruth was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis at the age of 13 and, in her early 20s, required multiple joint replacements. Following her recovery, she was inspired by the excellent care she received from the NHS, leading her to retrain as a Speech and Language Therapist. This career shift was suggested by her supportive rheumatology consultant, exemplifying true partnership working.

      Having worked for the NHS for over 10 years, Ruth has held various roles including in community neurology, acute stroke, and in-patient mental health for older adults. In her current position, she works on a stroke rehabilitation ward, having specialized in stroke for several years. She also leads a communication group for stroke survivors, with former group members volunteering to support others. Ruth’s participation in the Bridges workshops resonated deeply with her clinical practice and personal beliefs, solidifying her role as an advocate for the Bridges approach within the Multidisciplinary Team (MDT) and the broader Speech and Language Therapy community. This led her to become a Clinical Associate.

      Living with a long-term condition, working as an NHS clinician, and being the primary carer for a child with complex needs, Ruth strongly believes in the Bridges approach and its core principles. She finds incorporating Bridges into her practice not only powerful for those she works with but also fosters true collaborative working. Ruth is passionate about working alongside her clients, firmly believing in self-management and centering the person in all aspects of her work.

    • Georgia Seddon

      Georgia Seddon

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      Georgia Seddon

      Georgia Seddon

      Georgia completed her Bridges Self Management training in 2021 with Pulmonary Rehabilitation where she was working at the time. The Bridges Principles resonated deeply with Georgia and since embedding these in her practice, she has experienced the value and importance in this way of working. Georgia is passionate about fostering a partnership with service users, to work together, side by side. She has championed Bridges in her teams throughout the NHS; Long Covid Services and Cardiac Rehabilitation. 

      Alongside her NHS work, Georgia started working with Bridges Self Management in 2022, as a Listen Practitioner for NIHR funded research project ‘Listen’. She has since been working as Clinical Associate supporting teams across the NHS to embed the principles of Bridges Self Management, as an essential cornerstone of clinical care. 

    Lived Experience Associates

    • Anne Wright

      Anne Wright

      Lived Experience Associate

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      Anne Wright

      Anne Wright

      Lived Experience Associate

      Anne joined Bridges following her involvement with the NIHR funded LISTEN Long Covid project where she worked with Bridges’ founder, Fiona Jones, in the co-production and training stages of the trial. Anne has lived with the debilitating effects of Long Covid/ME/CFS for over two years.

      Prior to this, Anne had extensive experience of working in the public sector, and since 2014 had worked for a large local special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) charity. Anne initially worked directly with parents, supporting them through the EHCP process, and more latterly in data/reporting roles, managing a small team, co-ordinating the statutory children’s disability registers for two local authorities, as well as providing signposting for parents and young people.

      Anne completed a psychology degree while raising her children and is very interested in how power relations impact all aspects of our lives. Her experience of parent/professional interactions in the SEND system has significant parallels with those experienced by patients in healthcare, and she is especially interested in highlighting the impact of language and power dynamics in patient/HCP relationships and outcomes.

    • Clare Dawson

      Clare Dawson

      Lived Experience Associate

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      Clare Dawson

      Clare Dawson

      Lived Experience Associate

      Clare works with various organisations that all share the same aims: supporting people living with illness, encouraging parity in the professional/patient relationship, and striving for a system that recognises people as more than their diagnoses. Through her work with Bridges as a Lived Experience Associate, Shine Cancer Support as a Network Leader and at Age UK as a Befriender she has seen first hand the power of co-production, personalised care and peer support. Clare has been part of various co-produced pieces of research in healthcare and has delivered teaching sessions for undergraduates on the self-management of long-term conditions. She is keen to advocate for a patient centred approach not just in healthcare services but in both the research and education sectors. Clare is a cancer survivor and lives with a progressive respiratory condition, and as such can offer an insight into both the experience of living with illness and the challenges involved in being a patient representative within the healthcare system.

    • Evi Machova

      Evi Machova

      Lived Experience Associate

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      Evi Machova

      Evi Machova

      Lived Experience Associate

      Evi works for Bridges as a Lived Experience Associate. Her professional background is business studies. Since 2015, when she was involved in a road traffic accident and suffered major trauma injuries, she has been focusing on sharing her patient experience through various university lectures for trauma and after trauma modules, speaking at national trauma conferences alongside leading health care professionals, bringing and sharing her patient experience through Bridges Self-Management training and as a lay member on the board for the National Institute for Clinical Excellence for Rehabilitation after Traumatic Injury. Evi manages to bring the patient perspective alive through her story telling and always knows when is the right time to tell a particular story when working with clinicians to emphasise the patient perspective without making the clinician feel like they have failed in their job. 

       

    • Lynne Craven

      Lynne Craven

      Lived Experience Associate

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      Lynne Craven

      Lynne Craven

      Lived Experience Associate

      Lynne has recently joined Bridges as a Lived Experience Associate; she had retired from The Self-management Partnership and saw this as an opportunity to continue using her skills and understanding of self-management. Lynne was diagnosed with MS in 1995 and moved from ‘sufferer’ to ‘living with’ after attending a Chronic Disease Self-management Programme and training to become a course tutor in 2003 with The Expert Patients Programme. In 2004 she joined EPP as a Lead Trainer. Whilst there she was a member of the National Support team for Co-Creating Health, a project funded by The Health Foundation. She co-authored The SMP, a 7-week self-management programme for patients, delivered in partnership by people living with a health condition and a health professional. In 2011, after being made redundant, she formed The Self-management Partnership with Kerry Hepworth.

    • Meera Shah

      Meera Shah

      Lived Experience Associate

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      Meera Shah

      Meera Shah

      Lived Experience Associate

      Meera trained and worked as a dentist for patients with special needs for over a decade. During this time, Meera was also a clinical tutor to undergraduate dentists as well as a postgraduate trainer in her speciality. She now has a portfolio career which includes working with Bridges as an LEA, with Health Education England as a Regional Dental Advisor, and independently as a healthcare educator and lived-experience patient expert, having lived with cancer for over ten years. She guest lectures on the undergraduate nursing course cancer module and the postgraduate cancer care module for Allied Healthcare Professionals at Cardiff University. Meera is currently in her final year of the MSc in Healthcare Professions Education at UCL. Meera is passionate about co-production and combining her skills as clinician, educator and expert patient to improve healthcare delivery, and has recently taken on the role as trustee at the charity National Voices.

    • Tatum De Roeck

      Tatum De Roeck

      Lived Experience Associate

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      Tatum De Roeck

      Tatum De Roeck

      Lived Experience Associate

      Tatum was 35 when diagnosed with cancer while living in Los Angeles. Four months later her mum was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Tatum immediately switched hats from patient to carer and returned to London to support her mum in her final months. Tatum’s younger sister has learning disabilities and needs 24-hour support, so Tatum stayed in the UK to be her sister’s voice, advocate and, at times, full-time carer.

      Her eclectic background is in presenting, training, acting and yoga so she used these skills to create the podcast Not Your Grandma’s Cancer Show, facilitating workshops for Shine Cancer Support and becoming a relaxation specialist. She is delighted to be part of the Bridges team and share her lived experiences in cancer, menopause and being a carer.

    • Helen Coombes

      Helen Coombes

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      Helen Coombes

      Helen Coombes

      Helen was 23 when she suffered a serious stroke, a couple of days after graduating from University whilst out running. She lost the movement through her left side and suffered with significant fatigue and cognitive difficulties. Helen spent a month in hospital learning how to walk again but has spent many years since her stroke working on residual difficulties. 

      Helen retrained as a physiotherapist after she was inspired by the therapy she received. She worked for the NHS in neurological rehabilitation and now works within Rehabilitation Case Management, coordinating rehabilitation for those involved in complex major Trauma. 

      Helen knows she was very fortunate with the therapy she received in the years after her stroke but not everyone is quite so lucky. She has first-hand experience in navigating head injury rehabilitation through the NHS but also as a therapy provider in the NHS and personal injury sectors.  

      Helen believes that a patient centered approach is essential for optimum patient engagement, and she is passionate about the Bridges self-management approaches in rehabilitation.   

    • Sarah O’Brien

      Sarah O’Brien

      Lived Experience Associate

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      Sarah O’Brien

      Sarah O’Brien

      Lived Experience Associate

      Sarah joined Bridges in summer 2023 as a Lived Experience Associate. To Bridges Sarah brings experience of co-production and involvement across education, healthcare, policy and campaigns from personal and professional work that focuses on supporting disabled people like herself to have their say. Sarah has worked with NHS England since 2020 as part of their Experience of Care programme to play a part in ensuring that the health system meets the needs of everyone. She has also worked with autistic people and those with a learning disability to support them to have their views heard by the government, by researchers and in designing accessible healthcare services. Taking together these personal and professional  experiences, Sarah now focuses on the inclusive involvement of disabled people in different areas of local and national decision making by looking at the processes of how we can actively include and exclude people. She can often be found researching involvement at King’s College London, writing about autism, cross-stitching, or running. 

    Our Bridges Lived Experience Associates (LEAs) have considerable experience of managing their various long term health conditions on a day-to-day basis and interacting with the healthcare system. This is a unique approach to training delivery, to have lived experience working alongside healthcare professional.

    “…Through my experience of co-delivering Bridges, I love that we merge both worlds of clinical teams and patients. I see that clinical professionals really value the insight into the patient world that they can gain through us – real people that went through it. We bring the theory to life and offer a unique chance to peek into that patient world of hopes, fears and experiences.”

    (Quote from Evi Machova – Bridges LEA)

  • Inspiring People to Live Well and Work Differently.

    As a team we share the same ethos and philosophy that drives our passion to create the best experience and environment for patients to live well. Bridges provide opportunities for both patients and professionals to work collaboratively to enhance self-management skills, knowledge and confidence.
    You can reach us by email admin@bridgesselfmanagement.org.uk