Autumn NewsletterBecome a Charity Trustee

Charity trustees are people who serve on the charity’s governing body and have responsibility for the overall control and management of the charity. Trustees ensure that the charity is run efficiently, effectively and in accordance with the law. All our trustees carry out duties in a voluntary capacity.

Becoming a charity trustee is a way to make an enormous difference to a cause that you care about. As a trustee, you are in a position to contribute to the direction and purpose of the charity, helping to shape its strategy. It is a very important role, as you can make a significant contribution to the success of the charity.

If you are interested in becoming a trustee for Merton Mencap, we would like to hear from you. Anyone can become a charity trustee, although we do have some requirements for a number of our specific trustee positions. We are committed to equal opportunities and welcome applications from all.

To speak to us about becoming a Merton Mencap trustee, email the Chief Executive or telephone 020 8687 4676.

Our Trustees

The trustees of a charity are the people who form the governing body or ‘board’ of a charity. At Merton Mencap the ‘board’ is referred to as the Executive Committee.

The trustees are people who have ultimate responsibility for directing the business of the charity. All our trustees are volunteers and receive no payment for their work, other than out-of pocket expenses.

The trustees of Merton Mencap are shown, below, with a brief introduction written by each person:

Julian Walton, Chair of Trustees

I have lived in Wimbledon with my wife since the early 1970s - I have 3 children and 9 grand-children. During this period, I have volunteered with various local charities in the education and social services fields. I practised as a solicitor in the City of London for over 40 years and I now work part-time as a business consultant. I enjoy most sports and play a bit of golf.

Astrid Spencer, Treasurer

I am a parent of a child with autism. I first got involved with Merton Mencap through the parent forum, Kids First. I derived a lot of support from Kids First and quickly joined its steering group. Through that, I represented parents and Kids First by contributing to a number of local authority boards and working groups.

I was approached by the trustees of Merton Mencap to become a trustee representing Kids First. This role quickly developed and widened to other areas of Merton Mencap and when the previous Chair stood down as I was invited to take the role on. I work full time as an accountant and, in the small amount of free time that I have, I like to relax with family and friends.

Andrew Harrison

I am person a mild learning disability and I have experience of using local social services. 
I became a trustee to help Merton Mencap understand the view from a person who has used services. In this past, I have been on committees with the Metropolitan Police to help them work to stop hate crime against people with disabilities – I did this for 10 years. I have been employed by Royal Mencap Society to go to day centres and help people with learning disabilities understand about government policies in social care. I have also helped out in day centres and worked hands-on with people with learning disabilities, so I could learn about their needs and how the care system works.

Michael Edley

I became a trustee of Merton Mencap in 2012, bringing with me experience as a senior manager in the public sector. I have been responsible for managing high level programmes of policy development and service transformation, most recently in the cabinet office and, prior to this, at Surrey County Council. I am currently acting as an advisor to the 
Chief Executive for public sector partnerships at Arvato UK, which is an organisation providing financial services to local and central government.

I have a particular interest and commitment to environmental protection and sustainable development. I have worked as an Environmental Consultant for United Nations Environment programme in Tunisia and on wind farms and nuclear power generations projects in the UK. I have also worked as a lecturer in environmental science and course director of an MSc in Environmental Management.

In my spare time, I am a keen tennis player and enjoy walking and socialising with friends.

Ian Newman

I joined as a trustee in January 2012 following my retirement from teaching after nearly 40 years, having worked with largely secondary age students in Lewisham, Kent, Sutton, Madrid, Camden and Merton. I greatly enjoyed my experience in education and relished the varied opportunities to work with and for the wider communities served by my schools.

I look forward to contributing to the work of the charity in all its aspects and acknowledge the support we received as a family for our youngest son, Ben, who was born with Downs Syndrome. I have lived in Merton for over 25 years. I am also a trustee of Merton Music Foundation and Raynes Park High School Charitable Trust. In my spare time I enjoy watching and still occasionally playing football as well as reading and walking.

Richard Drummond

I am a regular volunteer helping with the local food bank, receiving donations by collecting at supermarkets and making up food-boxes for distribution to client; I am an Ambassador for Charity for Civil Servants. In 2003, I obtained a Diploma in Coaching & Mentoring in 2003, and acted as a mentor for a number of colleagues in the Civil Service in the last 10 years and have helped them reach their career goals. I have significant experience in operational, delivery and policy roles in central Government services.

Patrick Burns

I've lived in Merton for nearly 40 years. I have three daughters and a son, Tom (now 37) who has a learning disability and lives at home. He attended Perseid school (where I was chair of governors), followed by Richmond College and now goes to High Path day centre. I currently work as a business consultant in an employee owned public services company. Previous professional roles include public affairs, communications, journalism and a few more. Interests - history, sport, film, family!