The Team

Keep Our NHS Public is run by its Steering Group (SG), made up of delegates from its 75+ local groups, and the Executive Committee (EC), which is an elected body from members of the SG. The EC meets monthly and the SG meets bi-monthly. Our current Executive Committee were elected in June 2019, and elections will be held again in 2021 and biannually after that.

Keep Our NHS Public also employs a professional team of activists to carry out its campaigning. We are also very proud of our  growing list of patrons. You can find out more about our staff, patrons and EC members below.

Campaigners and friends who have passed away are memorialised on our In Memory page.

STAFF

Tom Griffiths – Head of Campaigns

Tom joined the Keep Our NHS Public team in June 2018 working as our Campaigns Officer (now Head of Campaigns) to lead our national efforts to build Keep Our NHS Public’s campaigning and influence.

Contact: campaigns@keepournhspublic.com

Samantha Wathen – Press and Media Officer

Samantha is one of the founding members of Swindon Keep Our NHS Public where she has proved herself to be an excellent health campaigner. Samantha joined the national Keep Our NHS Public as our part-time Press and Media Officer in April 2018.

Contact: text/call 07776 047 472 or email: press@keepournhspublic.com

Max Leak – National Administrator

Max works part-time for Keep Our NHS Public since March 2019 at the KONPO office in Dalston, East London, ensuring the smooth running of the organisation.

Contact: nationaladmin@keepournhspublic.com

Hannah Flynn – Website Editor

Hannah joined Keep Our NHS Public working part-time in April 2019 and runs the KONP website.

Contact: website@keepournhspublic.com

 PATRONS

 

Martin Bell had a very distinguished career as a War Reporter and foreign correspondent with the BBC. Often known as “The Man in the White Suit”  and was appointed an OBE in 1992. Subsequently, he became MP for Tatton- from 1997 until 2001- standing as an Independent.
Martin is a UNICEF UK Ambassador for Humanitarian Emergencies.

 

 

Jeremy Corbyn MP served as Leader of the Labour Party and Leader of the Opposition from 2015 to 2020. Jeremy has been MP for Islington North since 1983. His activism has included roles in Anti-Fascist Action, the Anti-Apartheid Movement, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, and Stop the War Coalition.

He is also a committed supporter of a publicly owned and run NHS.

 

 

John Crace is a Journalist and Critic. He is the author of “The Digested Read” column in The Guardian and is that Paper’s Parliamentary Sketch Writer.

 

 

 

 

Andrew Gwynne, Labour MP for Denton and Reddish and has been since 2005.

He has recently been appointed to Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and is a member of Unite and the Co-operative Party.

 

 

 

 

Michael Frayn is one of this country’s foremost playwrights and novelists. He is possibly best known as the author of the farce Noises Off and for his other dramas- Copenhagen and Democracy. His novels include Towards the End of the Morning, Headlong and Spies.

 

 

 

Dr Phil Hammond qualified as an NHS GP and currently works in a specialist NHS centre for children and adolescents with chronic fatigue syndrome/ME. He is a journalist known for his Private Eye column Medicine Balls and a campaigner who lost his BBC job over plans to stand against Jacob Rees Mogg in the General Election.

 

 

Julie Hesmondhalgh is an actor famous for starring roles on British television shows such as Coronation Street and Broadchurch. She has long been a supporter of Keep Our NHS Public and we are proud to now have her on board as a Patron.

 

 

 

Baroness Margaret Jay, Leader of the House of Lords, worked as a journalist on leading news programmes, including for the BBC on “Panorama” and for Thames Television on “This Week”.

She has always had a strong interest in healthcare. She was a Founder/Director of the National Aids trust in 1987. She became Health Spokesman and Minister for Women in the House of Lords in 1997.

 

Owen Jones is a journalist, commentator and political activist. He writes a column for The Guardian and also features in the New Statesman. He has written two books, Chavs: The Demonization of the Working Class was published in 2011 and The Establishment: And How They Get Away With It in 2014.

 

 

 

Adam Kay is a former junior doctor and the author of a Sunday times bestseller. His recent book, This is Going to Hurt – Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor, has received international acclaim. Adam’s book is a colourful memoir of his time working in the NHS. Adam is passionate about standing up for our NHS and those who work in it. He is also an award-winning comedian and writes for film and television.

 

 

Lau are a three piece Folk band from Scotland and England. They have won the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards Best Band award four times. They often perform with pro-NHS banners and signs on stage with them and we are delighted to have them on board as Patrons.

 

 

 

Paul Laverty is a scriptwriter and lawyer. He has written and collaborated with Ken Loach on many occasions including The Wind that Shakes the Barley and the recent I, Daniel Blake. Like Loach his work is often political and portrays socially conscious themes.

 

 

 

Ken Loach, world-famous film and television director, twice winner of Cannes’ Palme d’Or, is renowned for the socially conscious themes in his work. Kes, Cathy Come Home, The Wind That Shakes the Barley and I, Daniel Blake are just four of his notable contributions to the British film industry. He has spoken at numerous rallies and demonstrations calling for more funding and an end to privatisation in the NHS.

 

 

Caroline Lucas Green MP, Brighton Pavilion, is Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Fuel Poverty, as well as Vice Chair of the Animal Welfare, Public and Commercial Services, Sustainable Housing and CND All Party Parliamentary Groups.

She is also a member of the Parliament’s Environmental Audit Committee.

 

Professor Neena Modi is Professor of Neonatal Medicine at Imperial College London, Consultant at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, Immediate Past-President of the UK Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health and President-Elect of the UK Medical Women’s Federation.

Neena champions the necessity for a sound evidence-base for health policy and practice, an end to gender-based and other disparities, and the health equity that flows from a publicly funded, publicly provided health service.

 

Baroness Molly Meacher worked in the NHS over many years, as a social worker and ultimately as Board Member and Chair of the East London NHS Foundation Trust.  She was also a Mental Health Act Commissioner in the 1990s.

Oneworld Press was founded in 1986 by husband and wife team Juliet Mabey and Novin Doostdar as an independent publishing house focusing on stimulating non-fiction. They are the publishers of NHS SOS and of the last two Booker Prize winners.

 

 

Michael Rosen is the author of over 140 books of poetry, stories and cultural politics. He was the UK’s Children’s Laureate 2007–9 and is currently Professor of Children’s Literature at Goldsmiths, University of London, where he co-devised and co-tutors the MA in Children’s Literature. He has won numerous international awards for his work.

 

Alison Steadman OBE is an award-winning actress and is well-known for her notable television roles in ‘Gavin & Stacey’; ‘Hold The Sunset’; ‘Pride and Prejudice’; and BAFTA nominated ‘Care’. Earlier in her career, she won the 1991 National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actress for the Mike Leigh film ‘Life is Sweet’, and the 1993 Olivier Award for Best Actress for her role as Mari in the original production of ‘The Rise and Fall of Little Voice’. She also received BAFTA TV Award nominations for the 1986 BBC serial ‘The Singing Detective’, and in 2001 for the ITV drama series ‘Fat Friends’.

Peter Stafenovic is a lawyer, journalist, filmmaker, political and social commentator, media personality and campaigner who is well known for his film, Debunking Political Deceit.

 

John Sutherland is a cultural critic and ex Professor of Literature at University College London.

 

 

 

 

Aneira Thomas was named after national health service founder Aneurin Bevan, Aneira Thomas is the first baby to be born in the NHS and as a former nurse, is a true advocate for the service. Aneira often tells of a time before 1948 when family members died or suffered great hardship for want of medical attention. Aneira gives much of her time to speaking to the media and making public appearances in defence of our NHS.

 

Claire Tomalin is an English author and journalist best known for her biographies on Charles Dickens, Thomas Hardy, Samuel Pepys, Jane Austen, and Mary Wollstonecraft.

 

 

 

Salley Vickers has written many novels including the best selling Miss Garnet’s Angel and The Cleaner of Chartres. The others include Dancing Backwards, Mr Golightly’s Holiday, The Other Side of You, Cousins and, published this month, The Librarian.

 

 

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EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

 

Carol Ackroyd, Executive Committee

Carol has been a member of Keep Our NHS Public since 2013 and on the Executive Committee since December 2015. She is Secretary of Hackney & City Keep Our NHS Public. She has previously worked both as manager and commissioner of community NHS and social care services. She aims to put skills developed deciphering NHS policy and directives to better use, helping to end privatisation and save the NHS.

Cathy Augustine, Executive Committee

Cathy Augustine joined the Executive Committee in July 2019. She is an energetic health campaigner with Oxfordshire KONP group defending NHS services. Cathy is an ex-local councillor. She has opposed the local impact of privatisation and damaging restructuring and has organised demos and rallies in Oxford.

Tone Horwood, Treasurer & Executive Committee

Tone Horwood is a member of Bristol Protect Our NHS and since July 2019 he is a member of the Keep Our NHS Public Executive Committee and KONP’s Treasurer.

Dr Louise Irvine – Executive Committee

Dr Louise Irvine is a GP in South London and secretary of Doctors in Unite. She is currently secretary and former co-chair of Health Campaigns Together. She stood twice against Jeremy Hunt in the general elections of 2015 and 2017. She is in constant demand for TV and radio interviews. 

Dr John Lister, Executive Committee and Keep Our NHS Public Secretary

John Lister is a founding Member and former Co-Chair of Keep Our NHS Public. He was co-founder of Health Campaigns Together in 2015, for which he edits the website and bimonthly newspaper, now in its fifth year. He is also co-editor of The Lowdown online journal founded in 2019. John has been researching and reporting on NHS policy since 1984 and has written extensively on the history of the NHS,including an award-winning book in 2008. In 2015 he also collaborated with Jacky Davis and David Wrigley to provide an updated analysis in the book NHS for Sale. He has written a number of award winning books on the NHS and global health policy.

Dr Tony O’Sullivan, Executive Committee and Keep Our NHS Public Co-Chair

Tony is a member of Save Lewisham Hospital Campaign (SLHC) which successfully took Jeremy Hunt to court to prevent the closure of the local A&E and entire acute hospital in 2013. Before retiring he was consultant paediatrician in childhood disability in Lewisham. Tony has served as co-chair of Keep Our NHS Public since December 2015 and he was a founder member of Campaign for the NHS Reinstatement Bill from June 2014. He is vice-chair of Health Campaigns Together since April 2018.

Dr John Puntis, Executive Committee and Keep Our NHS Public Co-Chair

John is Chair of Leeds Keep Our NHS Public which he helped set up in 2011. He is a retired paediatrician who specialised in gastroenterology and nutrition at the General Infirmary in Leeds, where he was Secretary to the Senior Medical Staff Committee and Chairman of Leeds West Research Ethics Committee. John worked as an NHS doctor for 40 years. He is a Member of Doctors for the NHS and Doctors in Unite, he joined the Executive Committee of Keep Our NHS Public as Secretary in June 2017. He became co-chair in July 2019.

Professor Sue Richards, Executive Committee

Sue is a health campaigner and member of Islington Keep Our NHS Public. She was co-chair of KONP until December 2015 and remains an executive member. She is an academic and writer on public management and worked in the Cabinet Office for several years. Sue was one of the five applicants for the Judicial Review 2018 challenging the introduction of ACOs (Accountable Care Organisations) into the NHS. She recently stepped down as co-chair of CHPI (the Centre for Health and the Public Interest).

Professor Wendy Savage, Executive Committee and Honorary Life President

Wendy Savage started her clinical training at the London Hospital Medical College in the East End of London in 1957.

Wendy qualified from Cambridge and the London Hospital Medical College in 1960. In 1985 elected Fellow of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists during suspension from practice on false charges of incompetence. Reinstated in 1986 as Honorary Consultant at The London Hospital, now Royal London Hospital. She became Honorary Professor at Middlesex University. Wendy is a founding member of Keep Our NHS Public in 2005 and is our honorary Life President in recognition of her great and vital contribution. She is a leading advocate and campaigner for women’s rights in childbirth and fertility.  In 2018 she won the BMJ Award for Outstanding Contribution to Health.

Keith Venables, Executive Committee

Keith Venables is a member of Amber Valley Keep Our NHS Public. He is a retired Principal Psychologist, trade union tutor and socialist activist who joined Keep Our NHS Public in 2014. He served as co-chair of Keep Our NHS Public for 18 months to July 2017 and was acting chair of Health Campaigns Together from its launch in Autumn 2015 until April 2017, when he was elected as its first secretary until April 2018.