Our Chair, Janet Underwood

Janet grew up and has lived in Rutland nearly all her life.  On leaving school she trained to be a registered nurse but then left the profession to concentrate on a growing family. For many years Janet also helped her husband successfully run his own garage business in Whissendine, where they live.  When the business was sold Janet successfully undertook a Return to Practice Course at De Montfort University to regain Registered Nurse status. She then worked as a staff nurse at Leicester General Hospital.  Janet also studied part-time, gaining a BSc (hons) in social sciences and sociology, an MSc in Social Science Research Methods and a PhD researching the experiences of hospital visitors to NHS hospital acute wards.  Since gaining her PhD in April 2017 Janet has been involved with research and associated academic activities at the De Montfort University Health Policy Research Unit and the University of Huddersfield School of Human and Health science. Janet therefore has a major interest in all things 'healthcare' and wants to use her own knowledge and experiences to protect the healthcare interests of Rutland residents.

Our Board

Kay Jaques, Board member

Caroline Spark, Board member

Caroline works in Adult Social Services for Rutland County Council in the REACH (Rutland Enablement, Crisis Response & Health) team. She has recently completed an Open University degree with modules in Public Health, Dementia Care and Health and Social Care. She has a prior professional background in consultancy and has presented technical reports and proposals to a wide range of professionals.  

Caroline strongly believes in communication between agencies and organisations to avoid wasting precious resources and has worked effectively in Multi-Disciplinary-Teams for RCC for several years. She has used many of its facilities (St Mary’s, Oakham Medical Practice, Rutland Memorial Hospital, Oakham Enterprise Park and the Community hub) and so understands some of the limitations and advantages of each.  She has varied interests in the health of Rutlanders from pregnancy, early years including a particular concern for teenagers’ mental health services, CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service) plus the vulnerable adults with whom she currently works. 

Jacqui Darlington, Board member

Jacqui worked as a Higher Level Teaching Assistant for a number of years before moving to Rutland in 2006 with her two sons, the youngest of whom has Down’s syndrome, Autism and very limited speech. Jacqui joined the staff at The Park School, Barleythorpe Road, Oakham where she worked with children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND). During this time, she also joined Park School’s Outreach Team. The team went into various Rutland schools to support children who required assistance to improve their literacy and numeracy skills. Jacqui then moved on to become a Special Needs Co-ordinator for The Ark Association nurseries in Oakham and the Rainbow Childcare Centres Ltd nurseries in Edith Weston and Exton. Jacqui eventually gave up paid work due to her caring responsibilities, but continued using her skills by volunteering with several organisations. Jacqui has also used her skills and experience to represent the views of carers and those with Learning Disabilities at meetings with the Local Authority and other service providers and commissioners.

Jacqui’s personal experience, and knowledge gained from extensive volunteering, has made Jacqui aware of the wealth of problems faced by Carers including the lack of information given to Carers of adults with various needs. As a board member of Healthwatch Rutland, Jacqui feels passionate that the views of the public need to be given to service providers and commissioners to enable positive change to happen across health and social care.

Connected Together CIC's Board

Past Board papers

We make the papers for our public Board meetings available online. We also publish a summary of what was discussed. Check out our past meetings to read more.

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View our latest Annual Report

Report on the findings, achievements and outcomes of 2018 - 2019, Healthwatch Rutland's fifth year's work since starting in Oakham in April 2014.

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