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Our Patrons

Our Patrons share our vision at St Peter & St James’s Hospice where people live and die well according to what matters most to them. We sincerely appreciate all the support they give us.

Anne Billson

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Anne trained in Oxford as an Occupational Therapist and moved to Sussex when she married Hew, a Solicitor, in 1956.

Anne has lived in Wivelsfield Green for over 60 years and has always supported St Peter & St James Hospice. Anne and Hew brought up their three children in the village and have been very much part of village life with the church fete being held in their garden for many years. Hew sadly died in 2023 and will be remembered fondly by those he leaves behind.

Anne was a Justice of the Peace for 32 years. She also volunteered as a driver and organised activities for patients attending the Living Well Centre at the Hospice.

Anne and Hew had a great interest in breeding and training Labradors and Anne had many happy holidays fishing in Scotland where she still goes every summer.

Black and white photo of a young Edward Fox OBE

Edward Fox OBE

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Edward Fox OBE has been a Patron of St Peter & St James Hospice for many years. He is married to the actress Joanna David and has three children and two grandchildren.

Edward has had a very distinguished career in the theatre, on television and in film. Together with his family, he moved to Cuckfield from London during World War Two. He initially went to school in Haywards Heath.

The Fox family are theatre people, Edwards’s father, Robin, was a theatrical agent and his mother, Angela Worthington was an actress and writer. His brother James is also an actor, and his youngest brother, Robert is a film producer. Edward’s children Emelia and Freddie are actors too.

Lisa Welton

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Lisa Welton was brought up, educated and married in Sussex and feels “It is an honour and a pleasure to work as a Patron of St Peter & St James Hospice”.

Lisa has a degree in French from the Sorbonne and Oxford Polytechnic and worked in Paris and the Loire before pursuing a career as a Corporate Conference Organiser with the international publisher, IBC Ltd, in London. She went on to establish the conference arm of publisher Acquisitions Monthly in Tunbridge Wells.

Lisa moved from London to East Sussex in 1996 where she has used her creative and organisational skills more broadly to support a number of different organisations in the local community. These organisations include Tommy’s The Baby Charity, Beacon School, Crowborough, and an ambassadorial role for St John’s Ambulance.

Lisa has lived in Newick with her husband, three children, dogs, chickens and the occasional pig since 2009, and supported Sussex Hospices in a variety of ways, including staging an Evening of Celebratory Music to showcase young musical talent in Sussex. She has developed her interest in horticulture over many years, and has immensely enjoyed opening her garden at The Old Rectory for St Peter & St James Hospice since 2019. Her commitment to the hospice companion service has become increasingly important as a way of widely supporting our local communities.

Susan Fleet MBE Hon GMS

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Susan Fleet was born and brought up in Burgess Hill. Susan has supported St Peter & St James Hospice as a regular beneficiary over the past 25 years and also by performing numerous concerts and fundraising events.

Susan Fleet founded Lea Graham Associates – a Burgess Hill-based PR consultancy and entertainment agency – in 1986. It is now one of the oldest agencies in the South East. She is the former chairman of the Burgess Hill Business Parks Association where she remains a director. Susan is also an ambassador for the Gatwick Diamond Business Association – Lea Graham is the longest-serving member, having joined in 1988.

Susan was Dame Vera Lynn’s PA for the last few years of her life. They became close friends, sharing some wonderful times together – which often involved singing and eating!

Susan’s passion for music and raising funds for charity earned her an MBE in the 2022 New Year Honours. She staged her first charity concert in November 1970 and has continued directing and performing several concerts every year since.

Piers Morgan

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Piers Morgan was born in 1965.  He studied journalism at Harlow College, beginning his career in local South London newspapers.  He joined the Sun in 1989 and was given his own showbiz column, ‘Bizarre’.  Rupert Murdoch made him editor of the News of the World in 1994 and he was headhunted two years later to edit the Daily Mirror, where he stayed until 2004.  Piers was a judge on both Britain’s Got Talent and America’s Got Talent; he won the first series of Donald Trump’s Celebrity Apprentice and also hosted his own prime-time CNN show, Piers Morgan Tonight.  He has co-presented one of the UK’s most popular morning shows, Good Morning Britain and the interview show Piers Morgan’s Life Stories.  He currently presents Piers Morgan Uncensored and writes regular columns for the Sun. He has written several books, including the bestsellers Wake Up and The Insider.

Piers Morgan grew up in Sussex where he went to school.  He is married and has four children.

Emma Cleary

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Emma is a trained teacher by profession, a traveller and a sportsperson. Her early career in London was spent in media sales for The Daily Mail, General Trust Group and Dow Jones International – publishers of the Wall Street Journal. She returned to Sussex and now lives in Ditchling with her husband, 3 children and 2 golden retrievers.

Emma launched her recruitment business specialising in flexible working seven years ago and most recently as an independent business called Flexibility Matters. Through her commitment and hard work, she has built a happy and motivated workforce by embedding flexibility at the heart of her business strategy. Emma was delighted and humbled to receive the award for New Business of the Year 2022 at the Gatwick Diamond Business Awards in March and is currently shortlisted for start-up of the year in the Sussex Business Awards

Emma is looking forward to working as an ambassador for the Hospice to help them maximise their visibility through her continual business networking in local associations.

Toby Whittome

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Toby Whittome was born and brought up in Sussex on the family farm just outside Scaynes Hill; he now lives there with his wife, two daughters and their two black Labradors and last but never least Pepper the cat!  

Toby’s passion for St Peter and St James Hospice began when the Hospice cared for his father during the later stages of his life-limiting illness.  “If together as Patrons we can help the Hospice to provide their incredible and all-encompassing support to even one more person and their family in their hour of need, it would mean the absolute world to me”.

Toby went to school locally at Great Walstead School and Ardingly College.   After graduating in ancient history and philosophy, Toby worked as an estate agent in London for twenty years in the Chelsea, Belgravia and Mayfair markets.  He then decided with his business partner Guy, to set up a branch of Jackson-Stops in his own much loved home county of Sussex. “I only wish I had done it sooner as we couldn’t work in a more lovely area or have nicer clients”.  

Toby is a man of many passions including travelling and sailing. These twin passions have led him to visit many incredible places including amongst others the South and West Pacific.  However, he is also just as happy spending time at home on the farm, tending to his vegetable patch!

Kay Andrews, Baroness Andrews of Southover OBE

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Baroness Andrews was born in Wales and she was a member of Tony Blair’s government and is a Labour Peer. She says; “St Peter and St James Hospice is known and greatly valued across the whole Sussex for the dedication and quality of its work supporting people and their families and friends at their most vulnerable. It is a privilege to support everyone involved in that work, going forward.”

Baroness Andrews was Chair of English Heritage from 2009-2013 and Deputy Chair of the National Lottery Heritage Fund, 2016-23. She served as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Communities and Local Government from May 2005 – May 2009 and held the position of Government Whip on Education and Health from 2003-2005.

Before being raised to the peerage in 2000, Baroness Andrews was a Fellow of the Science Policy Research Unit at Sussex University from 1968 -1970, Parliamentary Clerk in the House of Commons from 1970 -1985, and Policy Adviser to Neil Kinnock as Leader of the Opposition from 1985 to 1992. From 1992 until 2002, Baroness Andrews was the Founder and Director of Education Extra, the national charity for out of school learning and activities. She received the OBE in 1998 for her work in education.

Baroness Andrews has written books and articles on the history and organisation of science and technology policy, on poverty and social policy, and on education.

Matt Turner

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Matt Turner is extremely passionate about philanthropy. As well as being a Patron of St Peter & St James Hospice, he is also a patron of Chestnut Tree House and the founder of Young Start-Up Talent, a competition which aims to help 16 to 25-year-old entrepreneurs.

Matt started Creative Pod in 2006 and is the CEO. He has since developed The Creative Group’s portfolio to include Creative Pod, The PrintShop, SquareOne, Spacelink Commercial Interiors and 427 Marketing. Matt is only in his mid-thirties and, with no college or university degree, Matt’s success is based on his own merits, creative ideas, extensive network and first-hand experiences.

Matt Turner is married and lives locally with his wife and two children.

Karol Matthews

Karol Matthews

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Karol Matthews is an ardent supporter of St Peter & St James Hospice. Karol’s commitment to the hospice is deeply personal following the death of her husband in 2013. Her unwavering support has been instrumental in enhancing the hospice’s services and have helped to ensure that the hospice provides exceptional care and support to patients and their families.

Karol regularly visits the hospice and is a significant source of support to the Chief Executive. She is known for her warm and approachable nature and embodies the spirit of care and dedication that defines the organisation.

Staff and carers sat in sunshine

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