Meet the Board


Mike Fereday, Local Representative & Chair

We welcome Mike Fereday to our Board with effect from December 2016.  He has been a resident of the Parish of Cold Ash for 38 years and has an extensive working background as a forensic scientist.  He joins the Board of Healthwatch West Berkshire Berkshire to use the skills developed in his professional life to assist its vision for people in the locality of West Berkshire.  He is generally interested in the future workings of local healthcare and is involved, from a patient perspective, in the current “Connected Care” project and regularly attends public meetings of the Clinical Commissioning Group.

He believes it is important that the general public not only have a say, but can actually influence, for the better, the direction that healthcare and social care provision take. From a local perspective, the challenge for Healthwatch West Berkshire is to collect, collate and direct these views to relevant stakeholders in the hope of providing services that more directly reflect the needs of local people.

Andrew Sharp, Healthwatch West Berkshire Representative – 

Healthwatch West Berkshire Chief Officer


Martha Vickers, Local Representative
Martha has lived in Newbury for 24 years. She has recently retired after working as a health visitor in the area for most of this time. She has served the area as a local councillor and was Newbury Town Mayor in 1997. In her role as a health visitor she worked with the victims and perpetrators of Domestic Abuse, having witnessed the effects on young children of Domestic Abuse.

Amanda Cunnington

How where you live and how the systems in that area affect your life chances is something close to Amanda’s heart and goes right back to her Geography degree from the University of Reading. Thirty years on, her career as a director in a major pharmaceutical company focuses on working collaboratively with clinicians, policy makers, patient organisations and system experts to actively impact on unwarranted variation in healthcare. She believes that central to this is utilising and improving data – you need good data to make good decisions, to help ensure every patient has more equal chances to navigate our healthcare system and get the right advice and solutions at the right time. One size does not fit all and it is important that our local health service operates well within the bigger whole and this is why Amanda joined Healthwatch West Berkshire board a few years ago having moved to Newbury in 2015. Her hope is that her understanding of the how our healthcare system operates might be helpful as part of Healthwatch to improve population health in West Berkshire and also peoples individual experiences and ability to engage with the NHS.

Judy McCulloch

Judy has lived in Newbury for 38 years and has worked and volunteered in the Citizens Advice Bureau, locally and in Tadley. The last ten years of her full time employment were spent in the NHS, locally and in Oxfordshire. Judy worked as a Patient Advice and Liaison Manager (PALS) in the community hospital and in Patient Public Involvement, setting up the Patient Information Point, establishing the Patient Panel as a patient lead group and working closely with Social Services.

In Oxfordshire Judy was the Patient and Public Involvement Manager for 5 years and was instrumental in establishing an online engagement system that is still in use. Her work there included major projects on mental health, establishing care closer to home and patient transport. During that time she worked closely with the local LINks (the predecessor of Healthwatch) and supported the establishment of the Healthwatch in Oxfordshire. For two years Judy worked as an independent consultant running a major consultation for West Berkshire Council and supporting consultations for Berkshire NHS.

Judy has a firm commitment to the NHS and its future. She believes good change and development in the NHS and Social Care can only be achieved well with proper and effective engagement with those on the receiving end of care services.

Lesley Wyman

“I have a professional background in nursing, teaching, health promotion and public health.
I have a BSc in Nursing from the USA and worked as a nurse for 6 years. I also have a Postgraduate Diploma in Adult Education and taught nursing at pre and post registration levels.
“I have worked in the field of Public Health since 1992, working in local and national positions in the public sector. Having gained an MSc in Applied Social Science I became a Consultant in Public Health for West Berkshire Local Authority. I retired from this position in 2017.
Throughout my PH career I have always done my utmost to tackle inequalities in health and ensure that local residents are enabled to lead healthy and productive lives.”

Karen Swaffield

Karens professional background is Education (teaching, training, development and consultancy).  She was also a trustee of an independent advocacy service and a local authority Governor and Chair of governors.

Since retiring Karen has become very involved with things NHS and social care, about which she is passionate. She sits on a variety of groups as a lay contributor including Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust Appraisal Forum and Revalidation team.

Other roles include being a member of her Medical Centre Patient Group, the local area patient group, the Thames Valley and Milton Keynes Patient Experience Oversight Group, the local the Public Engagement subgroup of the Health and Wellbeing Board and the local Suicide Prevention group as well as contributing as a lay contributor on various research trials.  Karen is a lay associate to the Oxford Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) and sits on the Oxford AHSN Learning Disability Advisory group.  She is also involved locally with the homeless night shelter and sits on the Homeless Strategy group.  Karren had completed the AHSN Learning Together course in 2016.

Karen is committed to equality of access to health and social care and that the citizen voice is heard across groups which represent and take decisions about/for them.

Dr Adrian Barker

We’re delighted that Dr Adrian Barker will be strengthening our board with his knowledge and experience.

Having spent 26 years in local councils and national-level local authority organisations, including responsibilities in health and wellbeing, public engagement, national policy development and research, Adrian Barker has spent the last eight years undertaking freelance assignments and on a voluntary basis working locally in support of health and wellbeing.

As well as being a Healthwatch board member, his current roles include Chair of the Falkland Surgery Patient Participation Group (PPG), Chair of the West Berkshire Patient Panel (the forum for local PPGs), and Patient Leader at the Royal Berks. He also sits on the national NICE Indicators Advisory Committee and is involved with various projects for the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR). He sits on two Health and Wellbeing Board sub-groups, one that helps co-ordinate engagement between the various partner bodies and the other on mental health. He has also supported consultation on the local Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy

In the last six years he has been a member of the local Health and Wellbeing Board, a CCG lay member, Public Member on the NIHR Public Health Research Research Funding Committee and chair of Time to Talk, a charitable youth counselling agency.

Having worked professionally on advising local authorities on involving the public and promoting health and wellbeing he is now keen to make this work, looking at it from the other side of the fence, to improve, and reduce inequalities in, the public’s health and wellbeing.

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Paul Wilson

Having spent several years in hospital with Chronic Rheumatoid Arthritis since the age of two, and as a wheelchair user, went to a specialised school then college for disabled people in Alton. From there I went straight into employment age 19 into an IT/Telecoms company for 7 years.

I gained experience not only in the “World of Work” aspect but also gained a valuable insight on how companies try to adapt to disability. I changed jobs and moved to a large International Mobile Telecoms company where I gained various skills from customer service to monitoring and fault finding complex network issues. After 11 years employment culminating in redundancy, I started my own business which involved auditing companies, looking at their Access and Evacuation and working environments in line with the Equality Act to see if they would be able to employ someone with a disability. Unfortunately owing to further health issues I had to put the company on the back burner. Recently I have been approached and asked if I would like to join the Health Watch Team. I have many years experience of health needs/issues/requirements that people may have or have currently faced. I feel that I can use my expertise to help where needed, or at the very least, be available to add value and experience to any projects I maybe asked to get involved with.