Page last updated:
20th May 2024

Key people

Alison Hopkins MBE
Chief Executive – Accelerate CIC

Qualifications: RN, DN, MSc

Find Alison Hopkins MBE on:
Twitter | LinkedIn | Articles

“Our campaign aims to stop the daily harm of poor leg ulcer management for patients and the health economy. A very exciting goal!”

Alison started her lifelong interest in leg ulcers when working as a District Nurse in 1980’s. Alison developed as a specialist nurse, led the multidisciplinary East London Wound Healing Centre and founded Accelerate Community Interest Company. Her passion for increasing tolerance to compression bandaging has not wavered; she has pioneered an innovative compression strapping technique for hard to heal leg ulcers. She loves data and demonstrating how a system change can create significant savings to the health economy. Alison was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2018, for her lifelong commitment to improving the lives of people with significant lower limb wounds. She is currently Co-Chair of Legs Matter.

More about Accelerate

Joanne Casey
Professional Development Lead, Royal College of Podiatry

Qualifications: BSc (Hons) MRCPod

Find Joanne Casey on:

“I am curious about how disease manifests within foot health. My specific area of interest is within the renal foot in those patients living with diabetes.”

Joanne is a Specialist Independent Podiatrist having previously worked at Kings College Hospital for 10 years. She also works at The Royal College of Podiatry. During the first waive of the Covid-19 pandemic, she worked as a TVN delivering frontline patient care. She has been a Podiatrist for 20 years. She is currently Co-Chair of Legs Matter.

More about Royal College of Podiatry

Leanne Atkin
Vascular Nurse Consultant

Qualifications: RGN, MHSc, PhD

Find Leanne Atkin on:
Twitter | Research Gate

“Lower leg and feet disorders are often overlooked by patients, carers and clinicians leading to thousands of people needlessly suffering simply. We'll help put a stop to this.”

Dr Leanne Atkin is a Vascular Nurse Consultant within Mid Yorkshire NHS Trust and Research Fellow at University of Huddersfield, additionally is a Council member of Society Vascular Nurses (SVN). Leanne was chair of the Legs Matter campaign for over 3 years from Sept 2018 until November 2021, and also was joint chair for the National Wound Care Strategy Programme (Lower limb stream) for a number of years.

Leanne has a clear passion for a wide range of lower limb disease and has transformed local community leg ulcer services, this transformation has been recognised within national awards.

More about Society of Vascular Nurses

Rebecca Elwell
Macmillan Lymphoedema ANP

Qualifications: RGN, MSc

Find Rebecca Elwell on:
Twitter | Articles

“I am proud to be part of the Legs Matter Campaign. Together we are raising awareness of disorders of the legs and feet which are not seen as sexy and often end up ignored by the public and health care practitioners. Often simple strategies can be employed to alleviate suffering and prevent complications”

Rebecca is a Lymphoedema Advanced Nurse Practitioner within University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust and a trustee of British Lymphology Society (BLS). Rebecca organises the annual conference for BLS each year and has a special interest in paediatric lymphoedema being a founder member of the BLS Children with Lymphoedema Special Interest Group.

Rebecca has a special interest in in managing lower limb lymphoedema and the associated skin, tissue changes and predisposition for infection. She developed the BLS Red Legs Pathway which is endorsed by Legs Matter with the aim to improve recognition of the cause of inflammation in the lower limbs and lead to the timely implementation of the correct treatment first time.

More about BLS

Clare Greenwood
Clinical Nurse Specialist in Tissue Viability & Visiting Research Fellow

Qualifications: RGN, MSc, PGCert, PhD

Find Clare Greenwood on:
Twitter | ResearchGate

“I am passionate about lower limb wounds prevention and healing, with a special interest in the complexities of the heel ”

Dr Clare Greenwood is a clinical academic at Leeds Teaching Hospitals, NHS Trust, where she has worked as a Clinical Nurse Specialist in Tissue Viability for 15 years. She is a Trustee for the Society of Tissue Viability and Associate Editor for the Journal of Tissue Viability.

Clare completed her doctorate in 2020 which focused on the use devices for the prevention of heel pressure ulcers, which she has presented at national and international conferences, and has informed a successful NIHR HTA Trial “WHiTE14-PRESSURE 3”.
More about Society of Tissue Viability

Bethany Head
Clinical Nurse Specialist and Operational Lead for Sirona

Qualifications: BSc Hons, V300, PG Cert

“I feel privileged to be part of the Coalition, promoting the patient voice and best practice in leg ulcer management to improve outcomes”

Bethany has worked in wound and leg ulcer management since 2016 and is now a Clinical Nurse Specialist and Operational Lead for Sirona (Bristol, North Somerset, and South Gloucestershire) Wound Care Service.

Bethany developed her passion for wound and leg ulcer management after working with an inspiring mentor who had a passion for leg ulcers and now strives to share her own passion for improving leg ulcer management with others.

More about Leg Ulcer Forum

Ellie Lindsay OBE
Life President - Lindsay Leg Club Foundation

Qualifications: OBE, BSc (Hons) RN, DN, CPT, Dip HE, FQNI

Find Ellie Lindsay OBE on:
LinkedIn | Articles

“I'm proud to be part of the coalition representing Legs Matter. Together we will help shape and influence public knowledge and clinical practice.”

Ellie’s goal has been to put leg ulcers and associated conditions onto the healthcare agenda by seeking support from influencing decision makers (e.g. NICE, Parliamentary groups, Healthcare Commissioners and industry). She has been working in partnership with members of the public, Expert Patient groups, Department of Health policy developers, NHS managers and Healthcare professionals with an aim to raise awareness of preventative management of all aspects of lower limb related problems. Promoting good practice by forging relationships with nursing and professional organisations / societies, patient and industry groups, she regularly attends the All-Party Parliamentary Groups (APPG) and Medical Technology Group meetings (MTG), representing the Leg Club Members (patient) group.

More about Lindsay Leg Club

Jayne Robbie
Course Lead; MSc in Advancing Practice in Peripheral Vascular Disease

Qualifications: MSc, BSc(Hons), PGCE(HE), FRCPod, FRCPSG

Find Jayne Robbie on:

“By working with Legs Matter, we can increase the reach of FDUK and incorporate the lower limb and not just the foot. This will hopefully enable us to reduce the healthcare inequalities that exist for people clinically”

Jayne is a Senior Lecturer in Advancing Diabetes Care and Course Lead for Advancing Practice in Peripheral Vascular Disease at Birmingham City University as well as a Diabetes Specialist Podiatrist at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Trust.

She has been involved with high risk foot care for over twenty five years, and has been pivotal in the ACT NOW campaign to raise awareness of early referral of foot problems to specialist centres to reduce amputations. Jayne represents Foot in Diabetes UK (FDUK) for which she is Co-Chair.

Jayne is currently a doctoral student – researching health care inequalities and delays in accessing specialist foot care for people with highrisk diabetic foot disease.

More about FDUK

Debbie Sharman
Consultant Podiatrist - Diabetes

Qualifications: DPodM, DipHE, MSc, FRCPodM, FFPM RCPS (Glasg)

Find Debbie Sharman on:
Twitter | LinkedIn

“I have always been keen to remain a clinician and am passionate about improving the care and management of diabetes foot complications”

Debbie has been working in the NHS as a podiatrist since 1987, and as Consultant Podiatrist for Diabetes in Dorset since 2008.

She is also the Professional Lead for Podiatry at Dorset HealthCare University Trust, and Visiting Lecturer at the University of Southampton.

She has been an Independent Prescriber since 2010. She is a Fellow of the Faculty of Podiatric Medicine, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons (Glasgow) and a Fellow of the Royal College of Podiatric Medicine. Additionally, she is a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Foot and Ankle Research, and co-chair of FDUK (Foot in Diabetes UK).

Together with her colleagues on the Executive Committee, the aim of FDUK is to support healthcare professionals to deliver high quality clinically effective care in order to improve the lives of people living with diabetic foot problems.

More about FDUK

Gill Sykes
Advanced Podiatrist

Qualifications: MChs, SRCh, MSc

“Legs Matter means holistic involvement and pulling all disciplines together to give the best outcome for the patient by sharing knowledge”

Gill is an Advanced Podiatrist working in rural North Yorkshire and has specialised in wound management and offloading for many years now in the NHS. She enjoys the holistic management of foot ulceration and working as part of a multi disciplinary team.

She currently represents The Royal College of Podiatry and was previously a Trustee for the Society of Tissue Viability.

More about Royal College of Podiatry

Kate Williams
Senior Lecturer and Honorary TVN

Qualifications: MSc, FHEA, SPDN, BSc (Hons), RN

“Our website provides clear, reliable information for the public and professionals, so everyone knows what is needed to prevent and treat lower limb problems”

Kate is a Senior Lecturer in Tissue Viability at the University of Huddersfield and an Honorary Tissue Viability Nurse for Leeds Community Healthcare Trust.

She started working in Plastics and Orthopaedic Trauma but settled in the Community and trained as a District Nurse. She has worked in Community Tissue Viability in London, mid Wales and Leeds since 2003.

Kate is passionate about patient centred care and the values of the clinician patient relationship and is Vice Chair and Treasurer of Legs Matter and a Trustee of the Society of Tissue Viability.

More about Society of Tissue Viability