Staff

We are a small staff team because we want to work alongside our members and bring people together, rather than trying to do everything ourselves.

Meet our team:


Bridget Pike

Bridget is a mum of 3 and works as our Office Manager 4 half days a week.

Bridget leads on our administrative and finance support and tries to organise us.


Gary Bourlet

Gary has been a self-advocate for over 30 years and is a Co-Founder of Learning Disability England. Before this, he founded People First England.

Gary has a vast amount of experience in working with the media and has appeared on Channel 4 and in the Guardian. He is a civil rights campaigner and brought the People First movement to England.

Gary is a Membership and Engagement lead with extra focus as self advocate spokesperson.


Lisa Watchorn

Lisa is our Communications Lead. She works part time, every morning.

Lisa has worked in the social care sector for over 25 years in operations, business development and change management jobs.

She is the mum of two adult sons with labels of learning disability and autism and has been involved with lots of groups and individuals to make sure everyone’s voice is heard.


Rachael Hall

Rachael is one of the Membership and Engagement leads at Learning Disability England, and has a joint role with JMS Trust as a Carers engagement worker with them.

Rachael has a master’s degree in Disability Studies from the University of Leeds. She has previously worked as a Personal Assistant and with disabled children within afterschool and holiday club settings.

Rachael is a family carer and is passionate about disabled people being included, accessing their rights and living independently.


Sam Clark

Sam is the Chief Executive. She supports the members Representative Body and Trustees to lead Learning Disability England

Sam believes everyone has a contribution to make and is always looking for opportunities to collaborate and learn from other people. On her best days she goes swimming


Anna Balding
(currently on maternity leave)

Anna is personal assistant to Gary Bourlet.

She is a sociology graduate and passionate about supporting societal groups who are the most vulnerable to discrimination and may struggle to get their voices heard, particularly those with learning disabilities.

She also expresses this in her other work as a healthcare assistant for elderly people with dementia.