Learning Disability England to be Led by People with Learning Disabilities, Families and Allies

Press Release

July 2017

Learning Disability England, a charity and membership organisation, has elected a Representative Body comprised of people with learning disabilities, family members, friends, professionals and organisations.

Since the launch of LDE in June 2016 the organisation has undergone a transformation, working with solicitors to create a governance structure that ensures LDE is led by its members.

It turns the traditional charity structure on its head – giving members the power to elect a Representative Body, which in turn appoints a Trustee Board.

The Representative Body reflects the tripartite nature of LDE. Four representatives have been elected in each of LDE’s membership categories: people with learning disabilities, families and friends, and organisations and professionals.

Elected to represent people with learning disabilities are:

  • Jordan Smith
  • Lorna Ely
  • Lynn Jackson
  • Vicky Buckingham

The representatives for families and friends of people with learning disabilities are:

  • Claire Crossley
  • Lucy Burke
  • Sheila Moorcroft
  • Wendy Burt

The representatives for organisations and professionals are:

All LDE members were eligible to vote for the people standing in their category of membership. Over 200 people with learning disabilities, family members, friends and professionals voted.

The newly elected Representative Body will make important strategic decisions about LDE and will be responsible for appointing the Trustee Board.

LDE Co-Founder Gary Bourlet says:

“The Representative Body will make things happen on behalf of LDE’s members. It’s about time that learning disability organisations were led by people with learning disabilities and families, rather than just professionals. Nothing about us without us.”

LDE’s Representative Body will stay in post for the next three years, after which a new set of representatives will be elected.



For more information, interviews, and case studies contact Annie Tidbury, Head of Membership & Communications at Learning Disability England:

Phone: 07780 707 577

Email: Annie.Tidbury@LDEngland.org.uk


Learning Disability England is a membership organisation for:

  • people with learning disabilities
  • families and friends
  • providers
  • commissioners
  • national and regional learning disability organisations like self–advocacy & carer groups
  • development and training organisations.

We aim to:

  • Work together – with people with learning disabilities, families, professionals, organisations and the government to achieve better lives for people with learning disabilities.
  • Put people with learning disabilities first – in everything we do and how we are run.
  • Be challenging – when it comes to what people with learning disabilities and families want, need and have a right to.
  • Be empowering – by making sure our members have power and can act on behalf of Learning Disability England with confidence and clarity.
  • Be creative and try new things – by thinking differently about how we can solve problems and not being afraid to get it wrong sometimes.