Our Ambassadors

We are very fortunate to have the support of individuals from all walks of life. They have a shared passion for making a difference to the lives of those suffering trauma and loss. We are proud and extremely grateful to be working with such kind and empathetic friends and we thank you all

 

 

Greg Wise

We are thrilled to welcome Greg Wise, Actor, Author and Producer, as our Ambassador.  Greg has been an active supporter of our charity for a number of years and we are priviledged to have him on board.  Greg played the role of John Willoughby in Sense and Sensibility, which also starred Emma Thompson, whom he later married.  Greg’s sister Claire, sadly died of cancer in 2017 and he took over her blog when she was too sick to write and has since published her words into a book ‘Not That Kind of Love’.  Each year during National Grief Awareness Week, Greg helps us launch our event and talks passionately about the need to connect with others who are grieving, talk about our emotions and normalise grief.

John Adams

I am thrilled to become an Ambassador of the Good Grief Trust, a role that resonates deeply with my personal mission of empowering the bereaved and fostering societal resilience and compassion in the face of life’s challenges.

As a Funeral Director in my family funeral service in Bridgnorth, Shropshire, I has witnessed firsthand the profound impact of loss and the importance of compassionate support and service during times of grief, most personally the loss of my own Mum, Maria, when I was 12. This personal experience and how we support the bereaved has fuelled a passion for providing comfort and guidance to those navigating difficult transitions, I am very focused on creating further collaboration within the bereavement community, most recently with my ongoing service with the National Association of Funeral Directors (NAFD) and as Funeral Industry Advisor to Child Bereavement UK.

I believe in the power of togetherness among organisations dedicated to supporting death, dying, and bereavement. I see a future where these entities work closely together, pooling resources and expertise to create a more compassionate and supportive environment for all those affected by loss, resulting in a better way of living for all.

I am committed to amplifying the organisation’s message of hope and healing, while also advocating for greater cohesion and cooperation within the broader landscape of bereavement support, so naturally I am delighted to accept this role.

Dr. Amir Khan

We are proud to have the support of our new Ambassador Dr. Amir Khan.

Dr. Khan says; ‘In my practice in Bradford usually sends out condolence cards to the families of our patients who have sadly died.

After receiving a batch of cards from The Good Grief Trust, we began inserting them inside each condolence card.  The feedback was almost immediate, patients who had said they felt lost now felt as though where to go and who to speak with in regards to their feelings. They felt better supported and this has had a direct impact on their overall mental health which in turn, will have a positive impact on the work we do in the community’

 

Dr. Hannah Barham Brown

Dr Hannah Barham Brown is Deputy Leader of Women’s Equality Party, junior doctor, speaker, media commentator, blogger and social media stalwart. Her interests in include charity work, disability rights, medical ethics and law. 

Thankyou to Hannah for your passion for our vision and the need to reach out to all communities to offer early signposting to bereavement support.

Dr. Nighat Arif

We are proud to have the support of our Ambassador Dr. Nighat Arif.

Dr. Arif is BBC Breakfast GP and is part of the This Morning team, giving advice to viewers.

She says:

  • “In the pandemic so many patients have lost loved ones and families have been devastated. The ‘normal’ grief process has been the most difficult thing under lockdown. I have sent condolences cards with The Good Grief cards for my patients. This signposting has prompted them to consider contacting someone for support with their grief. No one should have to grieve alone. I fully endorse that the GP practices should add the Good Grief URL to their text facilities as another way of reaching the bereaved and supporting the mental health of our community” 

Dr Liz Riordan

Dr Liz O’Riordan was diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer whilst working as a consultant breast surgeon in 2015 aged just 40. She’s now a best-selling author, speaker and podcaster and one of the top 100 Female Key Opinion Leaders in Oncology on social media.

Liz needed the help of The Good Grief Trust when her mum died due to bone cancer after having her arm amputated and is passionate about making sure that everyone who’s grieving can get easy access to the support they need

Dr. Raj Arora

Dr Raj Arora is one of the most prominent and well respected experts within the UK medical landscape.  She is one of the UK’s leading medical educators, a highly respected NHS GP, a media doctor and the founder of The FaceBible Clinic.

She is an active Philanthropist and as an NHS GP she has seen first hand the lack of resources available to patients who are dealing with grief. She will be working closely with the foundation to help educate and raise awareness with regards to the positive impact the good grief trust can have on institutions and individuals. She says:

“Grief is a very personal experience. There is no one size fits all answer and as a national health service we need to recognise that. A lack of support during bereavement can lead to secondary issues such as individuals turning to drugs, alcohol and even self harm/suicide. Grief can have a huge impact on one’s mental health. The Good Grief Trust is an umbrella, it provides a shelter for those going through a difficult time. It also provides different types of support for those who are experiencing grief. I am extremely proud to be an ambassador for the charity – but our work begins now – we need the good grief card and QR code accessible in every primary care clinic (and beyond!)”.

Lydia Baker Bereavement Midwife

Luke was born in Hull and has two sons with his wife Lynsey. His boxing heritage goes back with his grandfather been an Irish boxing champion. Many of his relatives still live in Ireland.

In 2017, two weeks before Luke fought for the WBA and ring lightweight titles in America, his father sadly died, suddenly back at home in England. Luke didn’t tell anyone as he didn’t want it to affect such an important fight.   Speaking on this Luke said “I probably cried once a day. I had to try and shut my feelings off. After the fight I had a good cry. The only thing that kept me going is I know what my dad would have wanted for me.”

Luke is now ready to talk about his grief and he is passionate to help The Good Grief Trust in our work.  He will be opening a new gym in Hull in 2021 and we will be collaborating on a new initiative to support men’s grief through our Pop Up Cafes.

 

Jules Lewis

Jules Lewis is Lead Nurse, Swan/End of Life Care at Shrewsbury and Telford NHS Trust and is passionate to help improve EOLC and bereavement support for all her families.

Jules will be working closely with our Project Lead on the distribution of our Good Grief cards across all UK NHS Hospital Trusts.

She will help us to work with each EOL and Bereavement team across the UK, to ensure all staff are aware of the benefits of this one central signposting resource and that we plug the gaps that currently exist in the provision of early signposting for the bereaved.

Dr. Steve Marshall

Steve is based at King’s College NHS Trust.  As a clinical academic, Steve’s role combines research and teaching with clinical practice as a social worker in palliative care.

Steve is currently Co-Principal Investigator and lead researcher on a Marie Curie funded research project exploring the needs of children facing the death of a parent, known as the Supporting Children and Young People (SCYP) Project.

Steve’s research interests include the impact of life-limiting illness on the whole family; paediatric palliative care; the financial burden of illness; providing appropriate end-of-life care to the LGBT+ community; and improving pre-and post bereavement support.  His experience working with bereaved families within his Trust is invaluable to our work.

Tommy Blaize

As lead singer of the BBC Strictly Come Dancing band, Tommy’s powerful yet sensitive performances have helped create some of the most memorable TV moments of recent times.  Singing live to a live audience every week, Tommy is the man with the golden pipes whose unique, soulful sound is etched in the public consciousness.

Tommy began his singing career at the tender age of nine with ‘The Blaize Brothers’ alongside siblings Tony and Darrin, where he first learnt to sing in front of a live audience, playing in clubs across the North-West of England for 6 years in the 1970s.

Tommy met Linda, our Founder at a fundraising event, shortly after the death of his father and it was then that he offered to help The Good Grief Trust in our work.

Catherine Huntley

Catherine is a television presenter on QVC, the shopping channel.  With a lust for learning Catherine has earned several certificates in beauty, is handy with a power tool and is currently learning sign language. Passionate about compassion, she is an advocate for mental health awareness and is an animal-loving vegan. A producer once summed Catherine up by saying, “if you cut Catherine open butterflies would fly out”. In short, she’s nice and she loves love.

Linda and Catherine worked together at QVC and it was there that Linda learnt that Catherine had sadly experienced the death of her brother, who took his own life when she was very young.  Her personal understanding of grief and empathy for others will be a huge asset to our charity.

George Armstrong

We are all devastated at the loss of our friend, and former Trustee George Armstrong. We will always be grateful for his love and support for our charity and send our condolences to his family and friends.

George was a child actor in the BBC iconic series, Grange Hill, playing Alan Humphries.  He and Linda worked together as children in 1978, as she played George’s girlfriend Susi McMahon.  He then continued his success in television playing Alan in the spin off series, Tucker’s Luck, with our Patron Todd Carty.  George went on to have a successful career working as a lighting designer at Italia Conti Academy of Arts and a theatre technician at a public school. George has lost both his parents and is passionate to help others through their grief.

Miceal Murphy

Miceal Murphy is most well known for his work as a much loved presenter on QVC.  Miceal joined our team as Ambassador, after working with Linda, (our Founder), in their time together at the shopping channel, when she was guest presenter. Miceal sadly lost his brother to a heart attack and is keen to support our work and ensure we raise awareness of the importance of reaching out to help others.  He often posts about his mother and his own health challenges after the death of his brother, when he discovered he had a heart condition.  We thank Miceal for his passion for our charity and we look forward to working together.

Lee Pycroft

Lee Pycroft, make up artist is a highly regarded name in the beauty industry. She has worked with A-list celebrities such as Anne Hathaway, Elle Macpherson and Laura Dern and her editorial work has extended to Glamour, Tatler and Marie Claire. and heads up the make up team for Britain’s Next Top Model.

Lee founded and runs a groundbreaking initiative called MY-Makeover that uses beauty and makeup as a form of self-care to help boost self esteem and emotional wellbeing in vulnerable sectors of society.

Denise Parkinson

Denise is Entertainment Director Global and UK at Telegraph Media Group. She is responsible for the entertainment sector; creating the strategy for revenue and reach. Her work also includes producing and developing entertainment partnerships, revenue growth, exclusive content and leading new products to market both in the UK and internationally.

Julie Cole

Julie Cole is Family Support Counselling Lead at the Fountain Centre. She offer one to one counselling for children and young people under the age of 18, as well as guidance and support for parents when counselling might not be appropriate. Julie also offers support for teachers and other healthcare professionals.“I love working with children and young people. They tell it like it is. If they don’t think it is working they soon let you know! I have lots of ideas for projects that the children and families can be involved in, and believe if we can work with young people early enough, the impact of cancer on their young lives doesn’t have to be a negative one. At the moment there is very little provision for children affected by cancer, and I think this will fill a vital gap in the excellent service already provided”.

Debbie Flint

Author & QVC Presenter

“There’s a lot of people suffering out there….think about the umbrella group, you’ve got the resources there that if somebody is actually bereaved they can find exactly the type of help that they need in that moment.”

Denise Waterman

Denise is part of the original pop group Tight Fit.  She had a No. 1 single with a cover version of The Lion Sleeps tonight and a top 5 hit with “Fantasy Island” in 1982. The band re-formed in 2010.  Denise has experienced the death of both her brother and more recently her father in 2020.  She is a key member of our team at GGT, always enthusiastic about bringing people together, hosting events, and raising much needed funds.  Her brilliant acting skills have supported our National Grief Awareness week stories, with the production of videos to share others stories through drama, during the campaign.

Dr Julie Alexander Cooper

Julie Alexander Cooper
PhD, MSc, Dip. L.C., Cert. L.C., Fryog, YMCA, MBBO, MBASES, MASO.
Julie is a highly respected and qualified health and weight management scientist, who has been actively involved in exercise, health and nutrition for over 18 years
She has helped many individuals reach their goals with programmes that are holistic and take into consideration each persons wellbeing and lifestyle and has been invited to present at several national and international conferences,

Charlotte Broadbent

Charlotte is a professional, qualified Personal Stylist, helping people to look their best to be their best through styling, colour consultations, body shape analysis and personal shopping. Former HELLO! Magazine Fashion & Beauty Director she works with corporate clients and luxury brands such as Marc Jacobs, Chloe, Balenciaga and Calvin Klein and works closely with women and men across London, offering effective Personal Styling specialist advice, linking in with preferred partners.

Luke Campbell MBE

Luke was born in Hull and has two sons with his wife Lynsey. His boxing heritage goes back with his grandfather been an Irish boxing champion. Many of his relatives still live in Ireland.

In 2017, two weeks before Luke fought for the WBA and ring lightweight titles in America, his father sadly died, suddenly back at home in England. Luke didn’t tell anyone as he didn’t want it to affect such an important fight.   Speaking on this Luke said “I probably cried once a day. I had to try and shut my feelings off. After the fight I had a good cry. The only thing that kept me going is I know what my dad would have wanted for me.”

Luke is now ready to talk about his grief and he is passionate to help The Good Grief Trust in our work.  He will be opening a new gym in Hull in 2021 and we will be collaborating on a new initiative to support men’s grief through our Pop Up Cafes.

Neville Southall MBE

We are delighted to welcome Neville Southall MBE, Welsh former international footballer to our charity as Ambassador.

Through our work to support those who are bereaved in the football community, we know with Neville’s wealth of experience in sport, and his passion to reach out and help those who are struggling, he will be a huge asset to our work.

Neville says: ‘When it touches you personally, then it becomes a different ball game’

Katie Shalka

Katie Shalka is our Young Ambassador and has been supporting our charity for almost 3 years.  She has performed in two musical theatre shows, directing and devising a fundraising evening for us at Southwark Theatre, with many of her West End friends.

We are grateful for Katie’s input and support, and know that her personal experience of losing her dad when she was only 15 years old will be a huge asset to our charity and those she supports.

Honor Morrison

Honor is one of our Young Ambassadors. Her father died when she was 15yrs old and she has been helping us guide young people through their grief since we launched our website. Honor has designed our Young People’s page and co-hosts our 18-24yr old Virtual Good Grief Cafes. These online meet ups have been running throughout Covid19 lockdown and have been invaluable to her age group.

Honor was pivotal in launching our Pop Up Cafes at Nottingham Trent University, both for staff and students in 2019.  She will now be embarking on a research project commissioned by us in collaboration with Pastoral and Chaplaincy teams let by Notts Trent and a number of other universities. The project will focus on developing a new bereavement policy to support students, with a view to rolling out the initiative to all UK universities.

 

Georgia Newman

Georgia is a new member of our team and currently co-hosts our 18-24yr old Virtual Good Grief Cafes. These online meet ups have been running throughout Covid19 lockdown and have been invaluable to her age group.

Georgia’s brother sadly died in 2019 and she was a student at LSE at the time.  She is now working with us to help improve bereavement support for students across the UK.  She will now be embarking on a research project commissioned by us in collaboration with Pastoral and Chaplaincy teams let by Notts Trent and a number of other universities. The project will focus on developing a new bereavement policy to support students, with a view to rolling out the initiative to all UK universities.

Georgia is also helping us to raise awareness of the support needed within the LGBTQ community for those who are grieving and she is organising an event planned to take place during NGAW20.

Huge thanks to our Ambassadors for supporting our events