Martin Pettingell – Chair
Martin joined Headway Somerset as a trustee in 2003.
He also sits on Headway UK’s membership committee representing all the Headway groups in the south west.
Martin grew up and went to school in Taunton. Having attended university in London and qualified as a solicitor he returned to work in the west country firstly in Yeovil and then subsequently in Bridgwater and Taunton before moving to be a Partner with Clarke Willmott Solicitors, based in Bristol. Martin retired from legal practice in March 2020 and apart from the work for Headway now spends his time restoring old motorcycles and learning to play the classical guitar
Claire Stoneman – Vice Chair
I became Vice Chair of Headway Somerset in 2010. I am a clinical negligence lawyer and former Partner, now consultant, at Enable Law in Taunton and specialise in representing both adults and children with brain injuries, so I have a professional interest in this area. Unfortunately, I also have personal experience of brain injury as my cousin suffered a severe brain injury when she was in her 20’s following a road traffic accident, my sister in law had a brain injury in her 40’s after falling off her horse and my late Dad sustained a brain injury after falling off a ladder in his 70’s. I understand first hand therefore the vital support that Headway Somerset provides and I wanted on behalf of my family to contribute to this amazing charity. I live in Taunton with my husband. I am known for my love of travel and adventures. I love skiing, hiking (anywhere up a hill or a mountain!), running, HIIT, boxing, yoga…basically anything to do with exercise and/or being outdoors. I’m not good at sitting still and relaxing except when I’m on a beach in the sun!
Ian Topping – Treasurer and Trustee
After a 30 year career running large manufacturing and retail businesses, I returned to Taunton in 2020 with my wife when I led the acquisition of Relyon Beds Ltd where I am now Chairman. Established over 150 years ago, Relyon is an important local business in Wellington employing nearly 300 people.
I have had personal involvement with Headway through my wife who suffered a serious brain injury in a horse riding accident. I am very pleased to be able to work with Headway Somerset in my role as a Trustee and Treasurer as I understand the importance of support in aiding the recovery of people suffering with traumatic brain injury.
Outside work I like playing tennis and squash as well as walking mountains in the Lake District which I return to several times a year.
Gloria joined Headway Somerset as a trustee in June 2013. She has had a wide-ranging business career covering consultancy, marketing and market research. She has been a Citizens Advice Bureau manager and the elected Lead Governor of her local hospital. She currently works for the Patients Association on projects to improve patient experience in healthcare organisations across the South West
Dr Alyson Norman
I am a lecturer in Psychology at the University of Plymouth in the School of Psychology and I am a private counsellor in Somerset. I conduct psychological research into the long-term impact of head injury. My brother had a car accident and sustained a head injury in 1993 and was a client at Headway Somerset until his death in 2014. Headway Somerset offered him a huge amount of support over his lifetime and this is why Headway Somerset is important to me and why I support it as a Trustee.
Sue Cable – Trustee
After a varied career in teaching, training and counselling Sue retired to Somerset from Surrey in 2011. She joined Headway Somerset’s Board of Trustees in December 2013 and prior to this had been a volunteer at the Bridgwater centre for 18 months. Sue is a Senior Accredited Counsellor with BACP and worked for the NHS in Surrey in a Neuro-rehabilitation Unit supporting patients and families through the emotional adjustments needed when facing long-term Neurological conditions. In addition she designed and provided training for NHS staff, patients, commercial and Voluntary sector organisations. She is a committee member of the Somerset Neurological Alliance.
Lewis Janes – Trustee
I joined the board of trustees in 2014 having stepped away from a career spanning 25 years in Social Care Management in 2010.
My work settings included specialist residential schools, working with adolescents in care and on remand, managing a home for adults with learning disabilities and challenging behaviour and my last role was to manage a centre for adults with physical disability and sensory loss including people with an acquired brain injury. I was delighted to be invited to join Headway Somerset and to bring my public sector perspective and focus on high quality services to the organisation.
Alongside my social care career I developed a residential property business and I have been very fortunate that this business has allowed me many opportunities to enjoy many outdoor pursuits especially fishing, motor biking and travel.
A new long-term strategy for Headway UK Headway – the brain injury association (Headway UK) is currently developing a new long-term strategy.They would like to hear as many voices and views as possible from a range of stakeholders, including brain injury survivors,...
Brain injury charity Headway wants stronger action on concussion protocol following a "concerning" incident with Manchester United defender Harry Maguire on Saturday.https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/67330542