The Charity

Gerry O'Donnell : Chairman

Gerry O'Donnell, 68, is an Evesham District Councillor, and former Town Councillor, who also holds a number of other positions within the public and voluntary sectors, including Worcestershire’s Health & Wellbeing Board. He sits on the Executive Board of the District Council, with responsibility for Community Development, Sport, leisure, Culture, and the Arts. Gerry prefers to encompass all these areas under the heading of ‘Health & Wellbeing.’ Retired from the Civil Service in 2007 after 40 years service both at home and overseas, Gerry soon became interested in local issues after moving to Evesham in 1993.

His membership (and later Chairman) of Evesham Market Town Partnership provided an opportunity for Gerry to champion the cause of community based Cardiac Rehabilitation. His commitment to Cardiac Rehab stemmed from his own experience of the benefits of such a programme, following a heart attack in 1991. Fortunately, his home town at that time was Alton in Hants, where Dr. Hugh Bethell had been pioneering community based Cardiac Rehabilitation for a number of years.

Gerry piloted a community based Cardiac Rehab facility in Evesham in 2009 which has flourished and grown, but continues to need some financial support to pay for accommodation and promotional costs. In order to raise funds, Gerry established the Evesham Cardiac Rehab Charity in September 2010. Gerry’s aspiration is to have a community facility that can benefit all those at risk of chronic illness, as well as those who are recovering. This ‘wellbeing’ facility will be based on the principles of Cardiac Rehab, which is exercise, dietary and lifestyle advice.

Gerry's interests include music, current affairs, water-colouring, and socialising.

Anthony Haugh : Rehab Treasurer

Tony recently completed his career in the construction industry holding a Fellowship of the Chartered Institute of Building and membership of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. In his career Tony worked for a number of major UK contracting companies and latterly abroad for an international German group.

He is a strong Evesham Rotarian supporting many local activities and can regularily be seen on the river Avon in his classic launch.

He has two children, Julian and Lucy, who both live and work in London.

John Darby CDir, MIoD, FCIOB : Trustee

John has a background in management and strategic development. He spent most of his working life in the management of the construction process and was actively involved in the local community by serving on a number of boards related to children, young people, health and education.

He currently works for a Charity and provides project management, legal and personnel advice to various organisations in the Christian, Charity and Voluntary sector.

He is married with two adult and married boys and three grandchildren.

Fay Harrison : Trustee

Fay has recently taken early retirement from the NHS after 15 years working in Worcestershire, Gloucestershire and Herefordshire for both Acute and Community healthcare providers and as Stroke Lead for Herefordshire & Worcestershire Cardiac & Stroke Network. Prior to her NHS career, Fay worked in the commercial sector as Marketing Services Manager for a British international manufacturer.

Fay is passionate about promoting “holistic” care that recognises the impact of mental health and social wellbeing on physical health.

Dr. Martin Ounstead : Trustee
Dr. Sue Ablett : Trustee
Dr Sue Ablett

Dr Sue Ablett became a Trustee of EVCR in June 2015.
Prior to retirement two years ago, Sue was employed for 20 years as Executive Director of the Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Group, a job involving fundraising, publicity and promotion, coordination of clinical treatment protocols and clinical trials run across a network of specialist NHS treatment centres, and provision of information for patients, parents and healthcare professionals. On retirement Sue was invited to become involved with the Bell Tower Appeal in Evesham, subsequently chairing the Committee and achieving a successful outcome - £500,000 raised in 18 months. Other activities include chairing the Evesham Cyclefest and Writing and Literary Festival Committees. Sue is a passionate traveller, and has a wide portfolio of travel talks she delivers regularly to groups and societies, donating the fees to charity. She is an enthusiastic runner, completing her second London Marathon in 2014, walks miles every day with dog Spike, enjoys gardening and is an avid reader. Sue splits her life between homes in Evesham and Worcestershire.

Sharon Sterling : Trustee
Dr. David Farmer : Advisor
Sally Bee : Patron
Sally Bee

Many people say they have a keen interest in healthy eating and exercise. Indeed many TV chefs have dipped into the ‘healthy arena’ at one stage or another. However, no-one is better placed to speak from the heart when it comes to healthy eating. As Sally suffered 3 massive heart attacks at a young age, her approach to healthy eating is not so much a life-style choice but a life-or-death choice. Sally is a living miracle who relies on healthy eating to keep her body healthy and strong. Hers is a body that doctors said would not make it through the night during one of her heart attacks. Nine years on, Sally literally glows with health.

Sally is a regular on our TV screens appearing on This Morning, Alan Titchmarsh, Daybreak amongst others. She has a regular column in the Daily Mail called The Expert Patient and also writes for Top Sante Magazine.

Her cookbooks are bestsellers, appealing to heart patients and families alike. Michelle Obama is her biggest fan and her fourth, much anticipated book, 'The Secret Ingredient Family Cookbook' is out Jan 2nd 2014.

Sally has also just released a survival guide for heart attack sufferers called 'After Your Heart Attack. A Guide to Getting Your Life Back On Track.'

Accredited through the NHS as an Expert Patient, Sally is also a CBT counsellor and gives talks to patient groups up and down the country. She enjoys her role as an Ambassador for The Patients Association and is passionate about patient power.