Our England Council works on behalf of people living with MS in England.
Council members work alongside the staff team in England, as well as with our local groups, to stop MS.
The Council is ultimately accountable to our Board of Trustees.
Our meeting dates for 2021 are:
- Thursday 4 February
- Thursday 6 May
- Thursday 5 August
- Thursday 21 October
Meetings (except for occasional confidential items) are open to MS Society members. If you’d like to join an England Council meeting online, please contact us by email at [email protected]
Meet our England Council members
David Allen (Herts, Essex & Beds) Interim Chair
I was diagnosed with primary progressive MS in 1996. Having to give up work I understand the many issues people living with MS face, including family members and carers.
During my time as chair of the Luton Dunstable & District group I successfully developed a self-sustaining model for exercise classes.
My experience of social care and the benefits system, both good and bad, means I’m passionate about doing my bit to help bring about change for a fairer system.
I consider it a privilege and honour to serve on the England Council.
Peter Hicks (Hants & Islands) Vice-Chair
I first became aware of MS when my late wife’s uncle was diagnosed with MS in the 1970s. When my wife was also diagnosed with MS in 1998 I became her carer, and retired in 2005 to become her main carer. Since her death in 2013, I’ve been a member of my local group as a committee member and fundraiser.
I’m now the Group Coordinator. I’m working with some amazing people, whose tireless dedication to helping people with MS is truly amazing I’m also involved with Carers UK as a local Ambassador.
I want to use my experience and knowledge to move forward and seek the best possible future for people living with MS.
Ben Ajayi-Obe (Thames Valley)
I work in the media and broadcasting industry as a data scientist.
I've been aware of MS ever since my mum was diagnosed when I was 8 years old.
I'm a dedicated fundraiser for the MS Society and I've taken on several challenges to raise money. These include running a half marathon while pushing my mum in a wheelchair, and breaking a world record on an indoor rowing machine.
Recently, as part of a team of 4, I rowed 3000 nautical miles across the Atlantic Ocean without the use of an engine or sail. This challenge raised around £35,000 for the MS Society.
Helen Cherry (South West)
I was diagnosed with MS 14 years ago. At the time I was working as an occupational therapy support worker in a neurological unit specialising in acquired brain and spinal injury and MS.
In 2011 I had to take ill health retirement. To continue my passion, I decided to volunteer for the MS Society and train to become a lead support volunteer.
In January 2017 I became a group coordinator, and this has helped me to expand on the support they provide to those with MS in the local area. I'm involved in various steering committees with the NHS and local authority, where I provide advice and guidance from the point of view of someone with MS.
Marie Cullen (East Anglia)
I’ve had MS for 29 years and I’m a volunteer for South East Central Group and hold many titles.
I’ve run an exercise class with people with MS and have successfully handed over this project to the local doctor’s practice. I help people with MS find the right services, help with paperwork and act as an advocate for those who cannot communicate due to speech problems.
I have 4 children, one of whom is disabled.
I work full time and have a team around me to keep my MS in check.
David Kozlowski (North of England)
I’m married with two teenage children and live in Windermere in the Lake District.
I was originally diagnosed with relapsing remitting MS but transitioned to secondary progressive MS in 2013. At that point I had to stop working. I know first-hand the impact disability can have on employability and the dramatic effect it can have on the family.
I’m keen to push for improvements in medicine, diagnostics, treatment and care of those affected by MS.
Pete Nettle (Surrey and Sussex)
I was living with MS for over a year before it was confirmed. Before taking ill health retirement, I worked in the prison service for 17 years. I have been pleased by the care that I am given by my specialist at Southampton hospital, my local hospital and by the local MS nurse.
I know there are people living with MS who are a lot worse off than myself and I want to give something back. Having worked in conjunction with many charities though my work in the resettlement programme in the prison service, I feel I can help the MS community.
Shaun Paskin (West Midlands)
Biography and picture to come.
Tamla Willie (Wessex & West)
I have relapsing remitting MS, or as like to say, I’m an MSer!
I’m proud to be on the England Council and represent those with MS and affected by MS in my local community.
My role involves listening to the views of people with MS and making sure I have a good understanding of their opinions and needs. I then bring this to the council and share information with local MSers to keep them properly informed of developments.
Join our England Council
Philip was our England Council Chair. In this video he tells us about his passion for the role. Inspired by Philip's story? Join our England Council.
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Apply today to join a highly committed team of everyday superheroes helping our vision become a reality.