Meet the team
Always there for support
Meet the team
Hi Swanton Visitors
I am really pleased to have now joined the Swanton Team as CEO.
Having spent my formative years in retail and the leisure services sectors I began working in health and social care 10 years ago. In Jan 2008 I joined Nestor Group leading both domiciliary care services for Carewatch and live-in support agencies called Country Cousins and Patricia Whites.
In June 2009 I moved to the Lifeways Group, a leading supported living and residential care provider in complex LD/MH support services. I undertook number of roles ranging from Project Director through to Group Ops Director and then to the Group Commercial and Acquisitions Director. My experience with Lifeways across just over 8 years has given me a deep understanding of the complex care sector and the variety of projects that we will handle together at Swanton over the next few years.
I believe that publicly funded care and support is a truly dynamic resource where every moment can make a positive difference to an individual and their wider community. For me, excellent support is about people working together with openness, empathy and integrity.
Here at Swanton we will build our capability and proficiency to provide this excellent support through shared values, sustainable growth, and a commitment to best practice. This will be the platform for our future advancement of our current areas of services and our new pathways of service development.
Hi all, not many of you will know me but I joined Swanton on 27th April as your new Finance Director. I feel extremely privileged to be joining this company, especially as it embarks on an exciting new stage under the leadership of Alison.
Firstly, a little bit about myself. I qualified as an accountant over 20 years ago, initially working in the transport sector. Following this I moved into the service industry, working as the Chief Accountant for a business travel group for 5 years. A further move saw me working in the electricity industry for 3 years.
For the last 3.5 years I have been working for Care UK in a group role, managing the finances for all the central group activities and acting as a business partner for a number of directors and senior managers. I look forward to bringing the skills and experiences I have learnt from all my pervious roles to benefit Swanton on the journey that we are going to be taking together.
I also look forward to meeting you all over the coming weeks and months as I settle into my role here. I have absolutely bought into the vision that Alison has for Swanton and where she wants Swanton to be in the future, and look forward to working with everyone to meet this vision and provide the best quality service for all the people we support, as well as providing us with an excellent place to work.
On a more personal note, I am an active member of the Scout Association, running both a Sea Scout Troop and an Explorer Unit in my spare time. As you might expect, I enjoy a lot of outdoor sports including sailing, walking and camping, and enjoy providing opportunities for the many children who have been members of my local scout group.
My name is Vivienne Watson and I am Director of Operations with Swanton Care.
It has been a real pleasure for me to become part of the Swanton family. The company is growing and developing, with a sound company philosophy and values that reflect my own and centre on the service user. I am keen to further develop our staff teams and our services whilst ensuring that operational management is effective, efficient and quality driven.
I have been nursing since 1982 and became a Registered General Nurse following my training at Leeds General Infirmary in 1985. My career has predominantly been in the independent sector and I have managed elderly care, mental health, neuro-disability, critical care, paediatrics and rehabilitation services over the years at various levels. I have also owned and managed a specialist domiciliary care service, which cared for adults and children in their own homes with various complex and challenging needs, before selling my company in 2010.
I am very much looking forward to working alongside my colleagues in the Executive and Operational Teams to further develop Swanton Care’s services and the company’s standing in the health and social care sector.
Hello, my name is Gary Thompson and I am the new Operations Director for Swanton Care & Community. I am really excited to be here and look forward to meeting you all over the coming months.
I live in a small village just outside of Newark in Nottinghamshire with my wife of 25 years and our 3 boys aged between 16 – 23yrs old. Sharing our home are 4 dogs, 2 cats, 2 tortoises and 3 ducks, believe me this is a lot less than previously when there were a total of 35 mouths to feed before my own.
I have worked in the care / support sector for nearly 30 years now starting in a large residential home in Dorset, which is my home county. There I was eventually employed as a support worker and met my wife Jan, who was managing the home at the time. After 3 years and coinciding with the birth of our eldest son we moved to Nottinghamshire and I took a support worker role with the Hesley Group who provide Residential Education Services to children and adults. Whilst there I was lucky enough to be sponsored by them to go to University and study for my degree in Social Work.
When I qualified I was offered the opportunity by Thelma Turner Homes to open and manage a small residential home for adults with Prada Willi Syndrome which was my first position as a registered person.
We were then acquired by what is now the Voyage Group and I then moved into a Development Managers role for the group, latterly ending up as Group Development Manager, meaning that I lived and worked away from home for 3 years, in a national role. As you can imagine, with a young family this had its challenges and I decided to look for a more local role, closer to home. This I found with Robinia for a period of 2 years, again in a developmental role.
In 2009 I became the Operations Director of Autism Care UK, we operated specialist support services for people with Autism Spectrum Conditions in various locations throughout England and Wales. This included residential homes, supported living and outreach services.
ACUK was acquired by the lifeways group in 2015 by the Lifeways group and I became Managing Director for Specialist Support and Development, my final role before moving onto Swanton.
I am a trustee and Board Member for 2 networking organisations in the sector, namely the Association for Real Change and Confederation for Support Providers for People with Autism.
I believe strong leadership begins with openness, accountability and especially ambition. Ambition for the vital role of adult social care, for our staff teams and services, but most especially for the people we support. I think that this is what will see us through these challenging times. My own approach is to combine an attention to detail (about the lives of people we all support and the issues that are important to them) with strategic knowledge and a bit of plain speaking! These are things that I can bring to the Swanton Care Group and wider, through my association with ARC (Association for Real Change) and CoSPPA (Confederation for Service Providers for People with Autism) which can give us a vitally important voice / source of information and best practice throughout the sector.
People say that I am decisive and supportive as a boss and colleague. I am good at taking a long view and knowing where we need to be as a care organisation both now and in the future. I hope that people admire me for my honesty, transparency and integrity. These things are very important to me personally and professionally.
My name is Gavin Evans and I’m the Estates Director for Swanton Care & Community. It is my responsibility to ensure that the Company’s property Portfolio provides a safe and suitable environment, exceeding the expectations of those we support.
A Mechanical Engineer by trade with a BEng (Hons) in Mechanical Engineering and Pg Dip in Engineering my early career was spent as an Officer in the British Army serving in a number of different locations and roles around the world.
On leaving the Army I took a position as the Engineering Officer at the James Cook University Hospital, an 1100 bed tertiary training hospital, in Middlesbrough. Going onto become the Engineering Manager and then Capital Developments Project Manager.
In 2014 I left the NHS and took up the role of Property Manager for the Danshell Group, a provider specialising in the care of adults with Learning Disabilities, Autism and Challenging Behaviours whose Services range from Residential Care through to specialist Hospitals. As part of this role I managed a number of refurbishment projects as well as the development of new Services alongside the normal maintenance of the Estate. My final role before taking up my current position being as the Head of Estates at Danshell.
I am a firm believer in team work and supporting individuals to achieve their best. That and the fact that that there is a right way to do things, even if this is not always the easy way.
Hello , My name s Deborah Rice and I am Regional Director, East Anglia, for Swanton Care & Community.
I have worked in the health and social care sector since 1981, and qualified as RNMH in 1984 after training at The Manor Hospital in Epsom, Surrey.
My career has covered all aspects of care and management across the NHS and the independent sector . After a period of time managing children’s respite and a day service for people with learning disabilities I moved to the NHS purchasing dept as part of the contracts and development team working on the closure of long stay hospitals and then to Social Services as a Care Manager for people with learning disabilities. I joined the private sector in 1999. Here I gained extensive experience in service management and operations/development management covering a raft of specialities including, Autism, ABI, forensic services, supported living and residential care.
I love what I do and feel passionately about providing the best quality of life for people we support.
My name is John King and I have jointed Swanton Care as Regional Director for The North and Scotland.
I’ve worked in learning disability and mental health services since 2005 all within the private sector, including registered, nursing, supported living and domiciliary care.
My career has taken me on a varied path through a variety of different providers and services. An extensive aspect of my career has been working within ‘turnaround’ projects, utilising my passion for providing high quality care to some of the most vulnerable people in society and increasing their quality of life.
Working with these people have given me some of the highlights of my career and I am looking forward to sharing my skills and experience to increase the outcomes for the people we care for within Swanton Care and grow the business within the North & Scotland to provide high quality and sustainable care to more people.
I began my career in social care as a support worker in a service for people with Profound and Multiple Learning Disabilities and some years later undertook a masters in Social Policy and Social Work.
I have worked extensively within statutory social work settings, mainly with individuals of working age. Subsequently undertaking commissioning and strategic leadership roles with local government. More recently I have worked with a range of provider organisations, focusing on research and organisational development projects.
My main professional interests are around reflective practice, Autistic Spectrum Conditions, and the development of best practice in supporting those with profound and multiple needs. I firmly believe that 'every moment matters' in the delivery of care and support to make sure that each individual is enabled to fulfil their potential.
I am delighted to have joined Swanton in this exciting phase of our organisation's growth and development.
Hello, my name is Noel Davies and I am the new Head of Supported Living and Special Project lead for Swanton Care & Community. I am really excited to be here and look forward to meeting you all over the coming months.
I live in a small town called Aughton which is approx. 30 minutes outside of Liverpool. I am father to my beautiful 13 year old daughter and handsome 8 year old son. For my sins I am an Everton season ticket holder and have been for 25 years. I also enjoy my time spent managing and coaching an Under 9’S Football team, I also try to keep fit by playing for veteran’s football team.
Before working in the care sector I have served in the British Army as an army medic, during this time I completed tours of Bosnia and spent time in Norway and the Arctic Circle working alongside other armed forces - Canadian, Germen, French, Italian and Americans.
Before taking my first managerial steps into the care sector I trained and qualified as a probation officer, whilst I was training in this role I continued to work part-time supporting people with an acquired brain injury and autism in their own homes and their local community.
I have worked in the care / support sector for nearly 18 years now, starting by opening a drug and alcohol supported living service for women affected by drugs and alcohol in Liverpool for ‘the big life group’. After spending two years successfully opening and managing this service I was given the opportunity to work for one of the largest residential care operators, Voyage Care.
After a successful 3 years working for ‘Voyage’ where I commissioned and opened three complex residential services in the Northwest of England I was given the opportunity to work for a leading supported living provider, Lifeways Community Care. My first role with Lifeways was as Area Manager for the NorthWest. During my time in this role I and my team successfully grew our service delivery from 2000 hours to 7500 hours per week, this was a combination of organic growth and tender win – fundamentally this was only possible due to the quality and outcome focused services we delivered for the people we supported and the positive and professionally relationships we had with individuals, families, commissioners and care managers.
Prior to becoming a Regional Director in November 2016 whereby where I was operationally responsible for Nursing Neuro, Nursing elderly, LD, Autism and complex residential services I was employed as a National Senior Project lead for new High Complex Care services driving the development on new residential service and integration of acquired High complex care services.
I am fully committed to providing safe quality services to all users and the organisation, I have strong values and believe in the ethos of control, choice and empowerment for individuals as being at the forefront of all work that I and we do. I believe for us grow and provide good quality person centred services we are to provide our staff with the tools, training and the pathway to develop within the organisation to be successful.
I look forward to meeting and working with you all over the coming years.
Hello, my name is Simon Rooke and I have joined Swanton Care as the Regional Director for the Wales and West Midland region from January 2018.
I have worked within the Health and Social sector in excess of 20 years mainly within Learning Disabilities and behaviours that can be deemed challenging. I have held many positions and am proud to have worked my way up through the sector. Notably I have been a Registered Manager of a Residential Home, have turned another Residential home from a green field 70 acre site into a fully occupied service with a working farm. My most recent roles have been Acquisition and Mergers manager responsible for Due Diligence and integrations of acquired businesses leading on culture change, and most recently being the Project Director responsible for overseeing the service transfer an entire local authority’s adult social care team over to a social enterprise (£200m Contract).
I consider myself to be an open communicator with an eye on progression for the individuals we support and my Swanton team colleagues.
I am thoroughly enjoying embracing the challenges within Health and Social care and look forward to working through all potential opportunities within this sector for us all at Swanton Care.
If you asked others how they would perceive me I would like to think they would respond as approvable, dynamic and forward thinking. I’m not afraid to take the right option as opposed to the easy option and consider teamwork an essential part of progressing the lives of people we support