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The Trustees

Steve Holt (Chair)

A Graduate Engineer, Steve has held many senior roles across Europe, the Far East and finishing his corporate working career as Supply Chain Director for a global food company in the USA.

He and his wife returned to the UK in 2009 and moved to All Saints just North of Axminster, in 2010. Steve set up a business consultancy supporting local SME’s and is involved in local business support. He became a Trustee of the League in 2013 taking on the role of Honorary Treasurer.

In 2022, he was elected Chair of the league, following the stepping-down of the long-serving Dr Phil Taylor. Steve is also a Trustee of the Axminster Heritage Centre. 

Dr Sarah Ellis 

Sarah graduated from Bristol University Medical School in 1996 and completed the Exeter GP training scheme. 

This included a year as a GP trainee at the Axminster Medical Practice in 2000. She has been a partner in the practice and lived locally since 2002. She is the practice’s prescribing lead and clinical supervisor for the practice pharmacist and paramedic. She also works closely in our primary care network (PCN). 

This involves collaborative working on joint projects with the two Seaton GP surgeries. She lives with her husband and two children and they are all keen cyclists. Sarah has been a trustee since 2018.

Jeanette Ward

Jeanette is originally from Falmouth in Cornwall. She completed her RSCN at Great Ormond Street Hospital, London and then worked in a Nursery for children in London before moving to Tolworth, Surrey in 1970. The family moved to Fetcham, Surrey in 1980 and Jeanette began work at the Rainbow Trust, a respite home for terminally ill children. Having moved to Raymonds Hill in 1994 Jeanette began working as an Auxillary Nurse at Axminster Hospital and has helped to set up local carers support groups.

Jeanette has been heavily involved with the Brownies and Guides and is on the finance committee with West Dorset Division Guides. She helps to run Axminster Memory Café and volunteers with the Dementia Friendly Axminster. Jeanette became a Trustee of the League of Friends so that she could continue to be involved with the hospital.

Mervyn Symes

Hazel Cross

Julian Hussey

Martin Diplock

Martin started as a trainee surveyor with an agricultural practice in Worcester (cattle markets, farm sales etc) for the princely sum of £3 per week then moved to the regional office of a large London firm of Chartered Surveyors in Hereford where he became qualified as a Surveyor.

Having always had a hankering to live by the sea he managed to secure a post in Seaton with a medium sized West Country practice and then was relocated by them to Lyme Regis where he was lucky enough to secure a partnership. Martin set up on his own estate agency in 1991. He has been very grateful to live and work in such a lovely environment and joined a number of local charities as a trustee and was especially delighted to be invited to be part of the Hospital League of Friends.

The League have been very fortunate over the years in receiving so many wonderful bequests and these funds have enabled us to give ongoing support to the Hospital in Axminster and related medical organisations. It is so important to maintain such facilities locally.

Phil Taylor

Phil Taylor was a GP in Axminster for just under 30 years. He was chair of the Wakley group of GP practices during the era of GP commissioning of health services.

He chaired the League for more years than he can remember accurately. He played rugby for Axminster and is a keen supporter of Exeter Chiefs.

He was heavily involved with setting up the Axminster end of the home nursing hospice service and is very keen to see it reborn when the League can sustain it.

Christine Cawley (Treasurer)

Ann Veit

Margaret Pike

Gillie George