Meet our Trustees
Eileen joined the Friends of Airedale over 35 years ago and has been an active, enthusiastic Trustee for the last, dare I say quarter of a century. Eileen has a firm belief in the charity and the many benefits that are provided to the hospital by it. She ensures that activities work seamlessly to add to a positive patient experience. She is a regular visitor to all departments across the hospital including the Chief Executive, keeping in tune with what is going on at the front line! Together with husband Harry, Eileen raised 4 sons and still found the time and energy to work at Airedale for 28 years, ending with her retirement from the position of Patient Services Manager. Now with 8 grandchildren and 8 great grandchildren Eileen is a very energetic member of the Friends of Airedale Team and is looking positively, as she always does to becoming an octogenarian. With a visit to a Buckingham Palace garden party, accompanied by Harry under her belt, what will be next for our industrious President?
The whispers around the hospital corridors suggest that not being one to stand still for long, one of Eileen’s ambitions is to drive a fast car around Brands Hatch!
Trustee – Shop Co-ordinator
Alison became a Trustee 10 years ago and has been a member of Friends of Airedale since 2001. She enjoys being part of a positive group of likeminded people volunteering for the benefit of the hospital. She has had a varied working life and even enjoyed a site visit to the Millennium Dome during the construction stage, seeing double decker buses providing transport for workers around the building.
Although she has to say that the highlight of her working life was the day that she retired! Family life revolves around her nephews and nieces and there have been a few fussy eaters cured with Alison’s wonderful cooking. Traveling both in the UK and abroad is one of Alison’s favourite pastimes and she counts flying close to Mount Everest as one of life’s unforgettable moments.
An admirer of David Attenborough the eminent natural historian Alison’s ambition is to meet him and explore a part of the amazon rainforest with him as her guide.
Jan joined the Friends of Airedale Board of Trustees in 2021 at a point in her career when she was looking to ‘wind down and put back’ – and she’s absolutely delighted to have been able to join such an awesome and dedicated team of volunteers and Trustees at her local hospital.
After a career spent in journalism (covering everything from a Royal wedding to the Hillsborough disaster) and PR (she now knows an awful lot about beds!), Jan is enjoying the opportunity to spend more time with her three grandchildren, see more of Britain (just done the Scotland NC 500 in a camper van) as well as catch up with old friends, take gentle strolls and throw a few shapes in a weekly Pilates class. An enthusiastic member of The Skipton Choir (singing all the right notes but not necessarily in the right order) and a keen reader, Jan can sometimes also be spotted riding pillion through the Dales on partner Steve’s Harley Davidson.
Still on her bucket list? To visit Auschwitz.
Janet has been a member of Friends of Airedale since February 2018 and a Trustee since the beginning of 2020, working both in the Friends Shop and assisting in the office.
Airedale Hospital has been a huge part of Janet’s life since 1974 when she moved into the area from Glasgow with her husband. Once settled into her new home Janet came to work at Airedale in the pharmacy department - and stayed until she retired! Airedale became part of family life as Janet’s late husband also worked at Airedale for over 22 years as a porter.
Football became the family hobby as her son played for Bradford City until the age of 18 and then played for local teams in the area. Janet is still involved with Steeton football club and is a regular helper with the youth teams. The football tradition has continued with Janet’s grandson and granddaughter playing for local clubs.
When asked what was on her bucket list Janet reeled a list off in her lovely soft Scottish accent – which included to see the Northern Lights, go on a cruise, see Strictly Come Dancing at the Tower Ballroom in Blackpool and to go to a George Ezra concert.
If you visit the shop say hello to Janet. You’ll know who she is as her soft Scottish accent is still evident!
Sue has been a member of Friends of Airedale initially from 1999 - 2002 working in one of the shops in an evening, in 2010 she joined the Guides and recently at our AGM received her 10 year service award in November of this year and she joined the board of trustees.
Volunteering as a Guide in the Outpatients Department Sue enjoys meeting people and being that friendly face getting them to where they need to go when coming to hospital for a procedure or to see a relative having a hard time.
With a background in education Sue still gets friendly reminders of her years teaching when past pupils stop by the Guides desk to say hello and still call her Miss!”
After taking early retirement and with encouragement from her daughter Sue has adopted the motto that “you get more that you give” and enjoys helping in her community as well as the hospital and was instrumental in the success of the local music festival Fallfest based in Glusburn - which she readily admits was a total change from her previous life.
Should you visit the hospital look out for the team of friendly faces at the Guides desk - always happy to help.
Val has been a member of Friends of Airedale since June 2019 and a Trustee since the annual general meeting of 2022.
Coming from a caring background with over 40 years’ experience working with children and families, and with a now grown-up family of her own Val retired and wanted to give something back. The result – first she joined Friends and began volunteering in the shop in the hospital main entrance where she enjoys meeting new people, next she became a trustee to help manage the charity and distribute the funds raised.
Not one to let the grass grow under her feet Val has a cockapoo dog and enjoys taking her on long walks in the countryside and loves travelling. Val includes a flight over the Grand Canyon as one of her travelling highlights.
And what was Val doing in December 2020? She was at number 1 in the itunes UK singles chart singing “Keeping the dream alive” as part of Rock Choir.
When asked what was on her bucket list she replied that when she felt brave enough a trip up in a hot air balloon was on the agenda!
If you visit the shop say hello to Val.
Kathryn has been a been a member of Friends of Airedale since October 2021 volunteering in the shop and a Trustee since the annual general meeting of 2022.
With a working life spent spearheading projects for national and international charities Kathryn brings much to the charity board. With a long-term commitment to Airedale General Hospital and respect for the work that Friends of Airedale do she aims to become more involved in the charity and utilise her experience in the sector to help enable this.
On a personal basis one of her ambitions is to assist the hospital to have as comfortable facilities as possible for all patients and their families.
Enjoying making family memories is high on Kathryn’s priority list and her three sons have created more than a few over the last forty years with plenty to bring a smile to her face.
There are a couple of non family memories that also feature highly for Kathryn – she has dined with King Charles III at Clarence House (during his time as Price of Wales) and has flown an aerobatic aircraft!
What could have been on the menu at Clarence House – one to ask Kathryn
Lee has been a member of Friends of Airedale since October 2022 and a Trustee since the annual general meeting of 2023.
So, what can we say about Lee our treasurer and finance lead who runs a successful company with wife Kate, lives locally, wears shorts all the way through winter and enjoys volunteering.
During his working life Lee found time to work for the BBC (yes, he’s a little bit of a celebrity) presenting radio programmes including “Lee in the afternoon” and Lee & Co”. Even moving to the small screen and presenting “That’s Life” with the very first public telephone vote to select the on-going presenter. Can you guess the year?
Not one for standing still Lee is a perpetual globe trotter and has visited over 100 countries. Even marrying the love of his life Kate abroad in Barcelona, Not all destinations have revolved around a sun bed, as many have been charity challenges involving kayaks, treks and a charity cycle ride across Tanzania!
What could be next for Lee? It’s already in the 2024 calendar to climb Kilimanjaro with his son Max as part of his 60th birthday celebrations.
Now, how many countries are there left in the world to visit?
Joan has been a member of Friends of Airedale since 2021 and a Trustee since the annual general meeting of 2023.
Not one to stand still Joan is a whirlwind, loves meeting people, and organising events to fundraise for Friends.
After volunteering in the Friends shop for a few years she decided that she would prefer to use her people skills in a more clinical environment and now enjoys volunteering on the maternity unit.
Her love of meeting people has clearly shown throughout her career and culminated in working as a Customer Relations Officer for a Social Services Department, helping people access services suitable for their situation.
A longtime local resident Joan understands how important the hospital is to the community and sees volunteering as a way of giving back for the wonderful care her mother received here at Airedale.
As well as enjoying volunteering and gardening she can be seen navigating her motorhome around the country with her husband at the wheel.
A big hello from David who joined the board of trustees in January 2024.
David now lives locally with his family and became a trustee as he is passionate about supporting his local hospital.
After a working life spent in local government, where David held the position of Chief Engineer for a London Borough, the family made the decision to relocate to northern England. Finally settling in the Keighley area.
A keen supporter of the charity sector David held the office of President of his then local Rotary Club and appreciates all that the voluntary sector does. He has also previously been a trustee of a life education charity which teaches children about dangers in their everyday environment.
David enjoys family get togethers. Events where David has been known to, shall we say not act his age, joining in with his grandchildren. Holidays are another favourite especially if they include life on the open waves as cruising is a big favourite of David and his wife. They have been on over 40 cruises!
If he could do anything David would love to own a Jaguar E type as he considers it one of the most beautiful production cars ever made.