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Our Trustees and Patron

Ghislaine Howard - Patron

A message from Ghislaine…

I am very happy and honoured to have been asked to be patron of Crossroads Derbyshire especially as I have links with what was then Glossop Women’s Refuge going back a good number of years.

It was in 2000 that I spent four months as part of the Arts Council’s ’Year of the Artist’ working with women and children in the refuge.  There, I made my own drawings and paintings of the experience and co-ordinating photography and  drawing workshops as well as organising the re-development of the garden area.

It was a marvellous time and re-affirmed the driving force that shapes my own work as an artist who celebrates shared human experience. It was deeply moving to see for example, someone chatting over a cup of tea, or relaxing in front of the television, and to realise that these ordinary activities that so many of us take for granted could be enjoyed by everyone there in a place of support and safety.

There is something about painting that is special, think of Rembrandt and Van Gogh, L.S.Lowry and others who were able through their work to touch people’s lives and to remind us of the joys and anxieties of being human. To draw or paint someone is to show that person respect and to recognise the frailty of the human condition,  celebrating not just the things that make us different, but above all, that which we share. Sometimes words fail us, and a simple gesture, a hug, for example can ‘say’ so much more – this is what I feel about painting – a single image can be so eloquent and affect people directly.

I hope that my involvement with Crossroads Derbyshire will be long and fruitful one.

Elaine McDonald – Chair of the Board of Trustees

Elaine is now retired but has a background of over 25 years working in Careers, Connexions and most recently Children’s Services. She has a wealth of experience in dealing with young people’s issues and multiple agency work. She also has extensive experience of delivering Training & Development and managing a satellite Assessment Centre.

Elaine combines being a Trustee with her other interest of Soroptimism.

Wynn Moran – Vice Chair

Wynn Moran acts as the Vice-Chair and is a member of the Fundraising Sub-Group. She recently retired from her post as Drama teacher at a Manchester Sixth-Form College where she had also been Pastoral Manager, dealing with the academic and personal problems of a large number of teenagers.

She was previously Head of English at St. Philip Howard School and has lived in Glossop for over thirty years. Her father was Lithuanian, her mother was Welsh and she is married to an Irishman so she finds it difficult to identify ‘British values’ but can cook across a broad ethnic range.

Meera Senior

Meera has been working in the field of monitoring and evaluation with the NGO sector for a number of years in international development and youth leadership & development.

Meera moved to the High Peak from London, and has travelled extensively with her work in international development to East and West Africa, Middle East, South Asia and Central America.

She is particularly interested in gender based violence and is an advocate of engaging with men in this field to overcome patterns of violence, and improve and increase the opportunities in the lives of men, women and children.

Cilla Hollman

Cilla has always worked in education and is still working at the University of Sheffield, but in semi-retirement. Many years of working abroad have given her insights into cultural differences and human relations. She has lived in the High Peak since 1986 and is also a primary school governor.

Jan Lee

Jan is now retired, but has worked in secondary education for most of her career. She was a chemistry teacher and then also the Education for All Co-ordinator for which she was responsible for co-ordinating the equal opportunities, PSHE, Careers and Citizenship in the school.

She is active in the local community. For many years she was on the Board of Trustees of Glossop Labour Club and has served as its treasurer and then Chair.

Jan is also treasurer of the Glossopdale Furniture Project and was treasurer of High Peak Women’s Aid (soon to be Crossroads) for many years.

Michelle Simpson

Michelle is a Family Law specialist with over 20 years experience in dealing with a wide range of Family Law issues. She is an Associate with Chafes Solicitors and is based in New Mills. Michelle is a member of the Law Society’s Family Law Panel and a Resolution accredited specialist in Children Law and Domestic Abuse.


She has lived in the High Peak for over 20 years. Michelle is also the Board’s Minutes Secretary.

Karen Mitchell

Karen has always worked in social housing in both operational and strategic roles for local councils and housing associations. Currently she works for a housing association in Manchester which provides affordable homes for rent and a range of community and support services across the south of the city. She has a strong belief in the right of everyone to a safe and secure home.


Karen has lived in the Glossop area for over 25 years and became a of Trustee of High Peak Women’s Aid, now known as Crossroads, in 2012. She is proud to be involved with this local charity which provides essential services across the High Peak.

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If you or someone you know is affected by domestic abuse, Crossroads Derbyshire offers confidential advice and support in Glossop, the High Peak and the North Dales. If you need our help, or know someone who does, call us on 0800 0198 668.