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Your spotlight on local services

0300 323 0006


Meet the board

Meet your local Healthwatch board members.

Board Members

I am now a Director of Healthwatch Cheshire having previously had a senior management role with Healthwatch Cheshire East.

I am also Chief Executive of CVS Cheshire East joining in May 2010 following the merger of the three district CVS’s.

CVS Cheshire East formerly managed the contract for Healthwatch Cheshire East.


Keith Roper, Chief Officer, DIAL West Cheshire

DIAL West Cheshire aims to enable disabled people and older people to live sustained, independent lives. We do this through the following key objectives:

  • Reducing poverty and improving economic status
  • Reducing social isolation
  • Improving health and wellbeing
  • Raising awareness of needs and aspirations
  • Providing opportunities for volunteering and employment.

The charity’s range of services are primarily delivered by volunteers (over eighty people each week) supported by a small team of paid staff. Originally established in 1986 as a user-led organisation, DIAL West Cheshire continues to involve disabled people in all aspects of running the organisation with approximately 70% of the overall workforce (ie paid staff and volunteers) having a disability or long term health condition. In 2013 DIAL West Cheshire (then DIAL House) was awarded The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service; the MBE for volunteer groups.

Keith Roper has been Chief Officer of the charity DIAL West Cheshire since 2006. He has previously worked with, and managed the delivery of services for, disabled people in local government and the third sector nationally. Keith is a passionate advocate for the rights of disabled and vulnerable people and the positives of an inclusive society. Financial and business planning, risk management and strategic vision are all requirements of his current role. During his time with DIAL, Keith has successfully developed the charity’s reputation for delivering efficient and effective services whilst stabilising the organisation’s financial situation. He has also enabled disabled people to demonstrate the positive contribution they can make in their community which has been recognised by both local and national awards.

More information about DIAL West Cheshire can be found here.

Laura Smith - (Healthwatch Cheshire Director)


Lucy Welsh, Head of Services for Age UK Cheshire

AUKC is an independent charity committed to improving later life by providing life enhancing services and support and to campaign to create positive change. It provides a range of care and support services to enable older people to continue to live more independent and active lives for as long as possible. The organisation is committed to working in partnership with others to achieve these outcomes wherever possible.

Before joining Age UK Cheshire in 2011 Lucy enjoyed a number of wide and varied roles within the third sector having worked in both national and local charities. As Head of Services at Age UK Cheshire Lucy enjoys overseeing a variety of services within Charity Services. There is a real emphasis on preventative support in these vital projects, ensuring that older people can access services and activities to reduce social isolation, enhance quality of life and increase wellbeing amongst older people living throughout Cheshire.

Information about Age UK Cheshire can be found here


Lynne Turnbull, Chief Executive of Cheshire Centre for Independent Living (CCIL)

CCIL is an independent, disabled people's user led organisation (DPULO), established in 1992, providing support services driven by the needs and aspirations of disabled people. CCIL promotes independent living, human and legal rights and engages with all disabled people, carers and other people who use services.

Lynne Turnbull is the Chief Executive Officer at Cheshire Centre for Independent Living.  After beginning her management career in the finance sector, Lynne decided on a change of scenery 10 years ago and moved into the voluntary sector. On receipt of her Management Qualification (degree equivalent), she progressed into Senior Management. She has achieved great success in delivering user-led services and is passionate about a customer focused approach in the organisation.

In addition to her Senior Management role, Lynne is also an Ambassador for the “Strengthening Disabled People’s User-Led Organisations” programme.  This programme is run by the Office for Disability Issues and it aims to build the sustainability and capacity of Disabled Peoples User-Led Organisations. 

Outside of work she enjoys reading and spending time with family, friends and her dog Buster.

Further information about CCIL can be found at: http://www.cheshirecil.org/

Mervyn Harding, Director and Board Member

Mervyn Harding, Director of Finance and Operational Support, Youth Federation

Mervyn Harding has overseen the financial and support services aspects of the charity, Youth Fed, since 2011. After completing his Ph.D. in Chemistry, he worked for several years in chemical manufacturing as Product Development Manager. On completion of an MBA at Durham University Business School, Mervyn worked for several university spin out companies raising funds for commercial exploitation of their intellectual property rights. After two successful starts up, Mervyn was employed by Manchester Metropolitan University as a Finance and Operations Manager on two educational partnerships aiming to improve progression routes for young vocational learners into Higher Education. Whilst at YouthFed, Mervyn has overseen the financial growth of the charity’s National Citizen Service, Talent Match and was a core team member that successfully applied to the Department for Education to set up an alternative education provision free school in Macclesfield.

More informtion about Youth Federation can be found at http://www.youthfed.org.uk/

Shantele Janes, Director of Cheshire, Halton & Warrington Race & Equality Centre (CHAWREC)

Cheshire, Halton & Warrington Race & Equality Centre (REC) is a local charity that aims to eliminate discrimination and promote equality of opportunity. The REC has a wealth of experience in all areas of equality, but in particular race and provides advice, support, guidance and training to agencies on best practice. It also offers various services to individuals and community groups, including a discrimination casework service, a BME specific community development service and management of the ‘Unity Centre’, Cheshire’s only multicultural community centre.

Shantele Janes, LLB (Hons) – Shantele initially trained as barrister at the Inns of Court School of Law. Having a particular interest in civil liberties work led her into the equalities field, where she has experience of acting as a representative in cases before Employment Tribunal, County Court and Employment Appeal Tribunals. She has been the Director of the Cheshire, Halton & Warrington REC since 1999, steering the organisation through significant changes in the equality agenda, including the merging of the 3 Commissions and the advent of the Equality Act 2010.

Shantele’s key expertise is around equality law and practice and she sits on various strategic panels to give advice including the Cheshire Equality Leads Forum, Cheshire Constabulary’s Diversity Monitoring Group, Hate Crime Scrutiny Panel and the Gypsy and Traveller Strategic Partnership.

For more information about CHAWREC click here.