Speakers/Chairs SCaH 2023

We would like to thank all of our speakers for helping us develop the SCAH programme.  Below are the confirmed speakers for 2023.  We will continue to add to this page, please check back regularly.

Dr Dianne Addei

Public Health Advisor for Health Inequalities

NHS England

A consultant in public health medicine, Dr Dianne Addei is the senior public health advisor in the NHS England National Healthcare Inequalities Improvement Programme. As a healthcare public health practitioner, Dianne has over the last 20 years led the review and development of several services in the NHS at local, regional and national level. She has successfully supported the development of various national policies and programmes to transform and improve the quality of services. Dianne is a Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health and has been a member of the NIHRs Health Technology Assessment Prioritisation Committee for many years. On the international front, she worked on the WHO led Polio Eradication Campaign and the launch the cervical cancer vaccines. Dianne currently works with colleagues in the national healthcare inequalities improvement programme to deliver good quality healthcare for all – ensuring equity of access, an excellent experience, and optimal outcomes for patients.

Prof Sanjay Agrawal

Professor of Respiratory Science,

University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust

Professor Agrawal is a Consultant in Respiratory and Intensive Care Medicine at the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust (UHL), National Clinical Advisor for tobacco dependency to NHS England & Improvement and Chairs the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) tobacco advisory group. With others he helped develop the British Thoracic Society (BTS) National Tobacco audit in Secondary Care , the BTS tobacco dependency Quality Improvement tool and delivered an RCP  ‘Breakthrough Collaborative’ focussed on treating tobacco dependency. Professor Agrawal co-edited the RCP report published in 2018 ‘Hiding in plain sight: treating tobacco dependency in the NHS’ that made the case for systematic treatment of tobacco dependency in the NHS.

Mary Aziz

Programme Development Lead

Health Innovation Manchester

Mary is a Programme Manager at Health Innovation Manchester working to deliver projects under the remit of the Academic Health Science Networks. Mary is currently working locally in Greater Manchester to address healthcare inequalities around paediatric asthma, including wrap-around smoking cessation interventions for families and the creation of educational resources on the impact of 2nd hand smoke on asthma.

Caitlin Barry

Project Manager

North East and North Cumbria ICS Smokefree NHS

Caitlin Barry is a Project Manager working on behalf of the North East and North Cumbria ICS Smokefree NHS Workstream and has been project managing the NHS Staff Tobacco Dependency Offer since its inception in December 2019.   With a background of working in an NHS Research and Development team which included recruiting patients to smoking cessation studies across the acute and maternity setting, Caitlin is passionate about supporting people to quit smoking with the use of evidence-based interventions and in breaking down barriers to accessing stop smoking services.

Richard Boden

Head of Tobacco Control and Gambling, Addictions Team

Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, Department of Health and Social Care

Richard Boden is Head of Tobacco Control and Gambling Policy within the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID) at DHSC. Prior to this, he worked at the Department for International Development for over a decade covering a range of international policy and programme issues.

Andy Burnham

Mayor of Greater Manchester

Greater Manchester Combined Authority

Andy Burnham was first elected as Mayor of Greater Manchester in May 2017 and was re-elected for a second term in May 2021. Responsible for shaping the future of Greater Manchester, Andy’s priorities include building a London-style integrated transport system, ending rough sleeping, transforming Greater Manchester into one of the greenest city regions in Europe and making Greater Manchester a great place to grow up, get on, and grow old. Before being elected Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy was MP for Leigh from 2001. In government, Andy has held Ministerial positions at the Home Office, Department of Health and the Treasury. In 2008 he became Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, before returning to Health as Secretary of State in 2009. In opposition, Andy has served as Shadow Education Secretary, Shadow Health Secretary and Shadow Home Secretary. Andy lives in Leigh, Greater Manchester, with his wife and three children.

Amy Butler

Senior Engagement Officer

Healthwatch Blackpool, Empowerment Charity

My name is Amy and I've worked in the Healthwatch Blackpool Team for 2 and a half years. I'm passionate about changing the lives of our local community in Blackpool, through advocating and empowering those whose voices are never heard. I share local people's feedback on health and social care services with those who commission and provide care, in order to strive towards improved access for all.

Jamie Cameron

General Manager

PharmaStrat Ltd

Jamie heads up PharmaStrat, the number one community pharmacy smoking cessation clinic for Birmingham and Hertfordshire. PharmaStrat provides turnkey hospital inpatient smoking cessation services and is currently on track to generate 1000+ four week quits per year. Other services include 'real life' vaping clinical research and training.

Emily Cannon

Head of Quality Improvement

National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health

Emily is Head of Quality Improvement (QI) with the National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health (NCCMH) and provides oversight on the NCCMH’s portfolio of QI collaboratives. She has been part of the QI team at the NCCMH since its inception, coaching teams on the Reducing Restrictive Practice, Sexual Safety, Enjoying Work and Advancing Mental Health Equalities Collaboratives. In addition, Emily has provided QI expertise on the national Suicide Prevention Programme. Prior to joining the NCCMH, Emily worked in the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ College Centre for Quality Improvement and the Clinical Audit and Research Unit of the London Ambulance Service NHS Trust.

Hazel Cheeseman

Deputy Chief Executive and Policy Director

ASH (Action on Smoking & Health)

Hazel has worked across health and social care policy in the UK and abroad. She currently manages ASH’s policy development work. With a background in health and housing policy Hazel has particular expertise in local government and the delivery of policy at a local level. Hazel also co-ordinates two coalitions dedicated to addressing the health inequalities caused by smoking; The Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group and the Mental Health and Smoking Partnership.

Dr Paul Cilia La Corte

Senior Programme Manager - Prevention

NHS England

After completing the NHS Graduate Management Training Scheme, Paul worked for 10 years in acute Trusts managing a range of services, including Women and Children’s and Trauma & Orthopaedics.  These roles focussed on delivering quality services to patients, operational priorities including acute patient flows, capacity & demand planning and the delivery of performance targets. They also provided the opportunity to act as a patient advocate and work with clinical teams to positively change ways of working. More recently Paul has moved to NHS England and NHS Improvement, working on national policy for Patient Choice, Elective Care Transformation and currently on Prevention.  In the latter role Paul has been working to develop and deliver the NHS Long Term Plan commitments on prevention with a particular focus on tobacco and alcohol dependence.

Dr Sharon Cox

Principal Research Fellow

University College London

Dr Sharon Cox is a Principal Research Fellow within the Tobacco and Alcohol Research Group at University College London. Collectively she has over 15 years’ experience within substance use treatment and research. Her research focuses on tobacco smoking amongst people living with severe, and often unchanging, health and social needs. She has a special interest in tobacco harm reduction, specifically investigating how quitting smoking using an e-cigarette can improve health outcomes and quality of life in people experiencing homelessness.

Jane Coyne

Senior Operational Programme Manager

Greater Manchester Integrated Care

Jane is a senior midwife and Lead for Tobacco Dependency programmes for NHS Greater Manchester Integrated Care. Jane has been responsible for implementing and embedding this complex programme that is pioneering in its work, taking a system-wide approach in the implementation across multiple areas of the NHS including maternity, acute and mental health services. Jane is passionate about ensuring behavioural support and treatment is available for all at point of care plus ensuring that Element 1 of the Savings Babies Lives Bundle is fully embedded to reduce the number of people who smoke during pregnancy. Her goal is for Greater Manchester to reach the national ambition of being Smokefree by 2039 and reducing the percentage who Smoking at the Time of Delivery to 4% or less by 2026.

Dr David Crane


Smoke Free

David earned his PhD in app-delivered behaviour change at UCL after 20 years creating a variety of socially-orientated technology companies. He now runs Smoke Free, a smoking cessation app which follows NCSCT guidance, has been found effective in three randomised control trials and has been downloaded 6.5m times worldwide.  

Heidi Croucher

Dorset Integrated Care System Treating Tobacco Dependency Programme Manager

Public Health Dorset

Heidi is the Founder and Lead Convenor of SCAH – this annual national conference that brings professionals together with an interest in smoking cessation to share the latest evidence based research and practices. Qualifying with a first class honours Bachelor of Science in 1999 Heidi has over 22 years midwifery experience with 9 of these specialising in tobacco control across Dorset. From 2014 Heidi implemented and led the ‘award winning’ Smoking in Pregnancy Service within University Hospitals Dorset.  In 2018 Heidi was head hunted by Public Health Dorset to lead ‘smokefree pregnancy’ projects, and more recently ‘treating tobacco dependency’ within secondary care programmes across the region’s Integrated Care System. Heidi has also proactively been the Regional Smoking in Pregnancy Champion for the National Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group. For the past 10 years Heidi has shown true dedication to her branch Royal College of Midwives by working in the role of a Union Learning Representative and her passion for conference organising, running learning events and networking opportunities is what brought SCAH into fruition in 2019.

Dr Alan Curley

Programme Lead and lecturer in Adult Health Studies

University of West of Scotland

Dr. Alan Curley BSc(hons), MBSCH, FHEA PFPH, FRSPH, PhD. Is the Author of the book ‘Playing the game of your life’ and Programme Lead and lecturer in Adult Health Studies at the University of West of Scotland. He is also Therapeutic Director of UC- Mindsolutions Ltd, which is a successful Addictions, MH and Sports Psychology Centre near Glasgow (www.uc-mindsolutions.com). Dr. Curley, is regarded as one of the most qualified experts on Cognitive-Behaviour change techniques used within the Addictions, Mental Fitness and Sports performance fields. He is also a Prominent guest speaker at many International conferences and Universities, as well as delivering training courses on Addiction, stress and motivation management, Groupwork skills, and influential behaviour & mind-change programs for the hardest to change clients. In 2005 he helped to devise the smoking cessation services for NHS Scotland. Dr. Curley, is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy as well as a member of the British Association of Behavioural Counselling and Psychotherapy. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Society for Public Health and has also been granted the ‘Distinguished Practitioner’ award from the Faculty of Public Health of the Royal college of Physicians.

Martin Dockrell

Tobacco Lead

Office for Health Improvement and Disparities

Martin is Tobacco Lead for Office for Health Improvement and Disparities. Martin has worked in Public Health since the mid 1980’s when he was involved in HIV prevention work. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Public Health.

Dr Maria Duaso

Senior Lecturer, Care in Long Term Conditions Research Division

Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care, King’s College London

Maria Duaso is a Senior Lecturer at the Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care at King’s College London. Her research seeks to understand the factors that influence the uptake, adoption, and implementation of tobacco control interventions. It spans across several clinical areas including substance misuse, long term conditions and maternity care.

Mike Elliott

Strategic Account Manager

Unite - Mercateo Procurement Portal

Meet Mike Elliott, the Strategic Account Manager at Unite's Mercateo Procurement Portal. Having spent nearly five fruitful years with Unite, Mike is set to share his deep understanding of compliant platforms for vape solutions. Mike’s personal journey is a testament to the efficacy of these solutions. After wrestling with the habit for 15 years, Mike triumphed over smoking with the help of vaping, an experience that motivates his efforts to forge viable solutions for the NHS and local authorities. Mike's career has also included valuable stints with central government departments such as the Home Office, where he honed his understanding of compliant purchasing and procurement efficiencies. Now, with the Mercateo platform of Unite enjoying the confidence of the NHS and local authorities, Mike is blending his professional prowess with his passion for promoting efficient smoking cessation. Attendees of the SCAH event can look forward to Mike shedding light on how to purchase vape solutions through a compliant, fair tax accredited platform, all the while illustrating the impact of such solutions through his personal journey towards a smoke-free life.

Hanna Ellison

Programme Manager, Tobacco Prevention Team

NHS England

Hanna has worked in the prevention team in NHS England since September 2021, both within a regional and national capacity and is currently focussing on delivering the Long Term Plan ambition around tobacco. Hanna has had a wide range of experience from a variety of roles at regional and local levels in the NHS over the last 15 years including roles in Public Health, Commissioning, Planned Care and Operational Management.

Kate Frazer

Associate Professor

University College Dublin

Kate Frazer is an Associate Professor at the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems, University College Dublin.  She is a Registered General Nurse with 30 years of clinical practice, education and research experience in nursing and health services. Her research focuses on three interconnected public health topics: inclusion health, tobacco control and Public and Patient Involvement (PPI) impacting clinical practice, health services and policy. Tobacco-related research encompasses maternity, paediatrics, primary care and oncology settings.

Louise George

South West Maternity and Perinatal Programme Manager

NHS England – South West

Louise has been the Programme Manager with the South West Maternity and Perinatal Team since November 2021, working on supporting the delivery of the NHS Smoke-Free Pregnancy Pathway across the South West. Louise has worked for many years in different roles supporting improvement initiatives for women and pregnant people, including in women’s health research and on the Maternity and Neonatal Safety Improvement Programme.

Darren Haley



Hi, My name is Darren and I'm the Co founder of e-burn Ltd. I have 19 year experience in HMP as a Senior Officer and worked in Security towards the end of my Service. I could see the need to develop vaping device suitable for secure environments especially as the Prison Service needed to introduce the Smoke Free Policy for Prisoners. The e-burn was born and we have become the leading supplier of high-security disposable vapes to the NHS Mental Health Trusts and private sectors. We've been in business since 2016 and have a proven track record of providing high-quality products and services to our clients.

Rafik Hamaizia

Expert by Experience

Cygnet Health Care

Raf’s role as an Expert by Experience sees him using his perspective as a former service user in a variety of organisations within the public and Independent sector. This has included the development of policy and guidance with NICE (National Institute of Health and Care Excellence), Royal College of Psychiatrists and the NHS. He is currently the Expert by Experience Lead with Cygnet Healthcare leading on the organisations engagement and involvement initiatives. Prior to this Raf was an Expert by Experience with the Care Quality Commission where he took part in over 150 CQC inspections. His experience of working on both a strategic and local level within Cygnet Healthcare has been recognised as ‘an area of outstanding practice’ by the Care Quality Commission and a number of other organisations. Raf was one of 12 chairs on the Independent Review of the Mental Health Act commissioned by the Department of Health and Social Care. He has completed an MSc in Mental Health Recovery and Social Inclusion at the University of Hertfordshire.

Rob Hebdon

National Pharmacy Integration Lead

NHS England

Rob is a National Pharmacy Integration Lead at NHSE and is leading on Smoking Cessation Services. Prior to his role with the national team, Rob had worked at Midlands & Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit (MLCSU). During his time with MLCSU, Rob supported the Wirral CCG Medicines Management and Optimisation team as the Lead Pharmacist and has also had the opportunity to support NHSE with a number of Pharmacy Integration Fund projects, including the lead role for the national implementation of the NHS Smoking Cessation Service.

Richard Holley

Area Manager

North and West Northamptonshire Council

Richard Holley is the Area Manager for the North and West Northamptonshire Stop Smoking Services, and Tobacco Control lead for both the North and West Northamptonshire Public Health teams. In early 2020, Richard and his teams started to provide e-cigarettes to service users. A passionate harm reduction advocate, Richard has shared his experiences with numerous stop smoking services across the country looking to provide e-cigarettes as part of their local offer.

Kaylee Hopwood

Targeted Lung Health Check Programme Tobacco Dependency Treatment Support Delivery Manager

Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Trust

Kaylee currently manages the delivery of Northern Lincolnshire and Goole Hospitals Tobacco Dependency Treatment Support service and has since the launch of the Long Term Plan implementation in 2022. Before working for the Trust, she worked for several years within the County of Lincolnshire, supporting health promotion within its population of people and leading organisations. Her interests lie within Behaviour Change and is working hard to highlight the importance of such, the implementation of behaviour change techniques within the newer service her Trust provides, and now has been given the opportunity to embed the same processes within the newer area of Tobacco Dependency Treatment support within the Targeted Lung Health Check Programme, by offering a new and innovative service model within the project.

Steve King


Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit

Steve is a pharmacist in the Medicines Support Partnerships team at Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit  (MLCSU).  In January 2022, Steve joined Rob Hebdon (before Rob's move to NHSE) supporting implementation of the new Smoking Cessation Service for community pharmacies.
Qualifying in 1989 Steve started his career in secondary care with a particular specialisation in Rheumatology and Rehabilitation Medicine. After moving to primary care, Steve has had a variety of roles within medicines management and optimisation teams including intermediate care and nursing homes.  Steve joined MLCSU in 2016.

Abigail Lee

Young Person’s Engagement Officer

Healthwatch Blackpool, Empowerment Charity

My name is Abigail Lee and I am a Young Person’s Engagement Officer at Healthwatch Blackpool. My role is to listen to the experiences of local young people living in in Blackpool surrounding health and social care, and provide them with a platform to have their voice heard.

Martin Lever

Tobacco Reduction Programme Manager

Somerset NHS Foundation Trust

Joint Lead Convenor - Martin graduated with a first in Environmental Sciences from Manchester Metropolitan University in 1998. He has worked in tobacco control since 2006, managing services in acute, community and mental health settings. Presently, he is the Tobacco Reduction Programme Manager at Somerset NHS Foundation Trust where he is mobilising acute and mental health smoking cessation and harm reduction pathways. A behaviour change clinical specialist, Martin has a strong interest in evolving the frontiers of smoking cessation practice and interventions, particularly when working with marginalised and deeply entrenched smokers. Twitter @QuitTobaccoSom

Dr Nicola Lindson

University Research Lecturer & Cochrane Tobacco Addiction Group (TAG) Managing Editor

University of Oxford

Dr Nicola Lindson is a senior researcher, who has been involved in smoking cessation research since 2008. She is based within the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences at the University of Oxford. Nicola is leading a programme of research looking at the provision of support to quit smoking in social housing and other financial support services.

Jo Locker

Senior Tobacco Control Manager

Office of Health Improvement & Disparities

Jo Locker is Senior Tobacco Control Manager at the Office of Health Improvement & Disparities, working across the national tobacco control programme, with a special focus on reducing smoking in pregnancy. She has been involved with issues related to tobacco and smoking cessation for more than fifteen years including providing stop smoking interventions, the development and delivery of training for stop smoking practitioners and supporting the implementation of policy at the national, regional and local level.

Rachel McIlvenna

Smokefree NHS Strategic Manager

North East and North Cumbria ICB

Rachel McIlvenna is the Smokefree NHS Strategic Manager for the North East and North Cumbria ICB. In her role Rachel is leading the system wide implementation of the NHS Long Term Plan smoking ambitions in the regions’ 10 NHS Foundation Trusts and providing strategic leadership across multiple tobacco programmes. Prior to joining the NHS, Rachel worked in local government for over 11 years in multiple public health roles including on tobacco control and smoking cessation programmes and led on a number of long term conditions portfolios. Rachel is a UKPHR registered public health practitioner and in 2019 was the first recipient of the UKPHR Alison Thorpe Award for ‘Translating Evidence into Practice’.  

Samantha Osborne

Specialist Smoking in Pregnancy Midwife

University Hospitals Dorset

Samantha Osborne is a specialist midwife in smoking cessation at University Hospital Dorset UHD. Graduating from Greenwich University BSC Hon Midwifery in 2010, whilst training at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in South East London.  Samantha has worked in all areas of midwifery before adventuring into tobacco dependency in pregnancy. Samantha provides an in-house smoking service with a dedicated maternity team. She's passionate about providing quality care and the importance of allowing everyone to access the support and opportunities they need. Samantha aims to help achieve a smoke free generation, to provide equality in knowledge and the support needed to create smoke free homes for our babies, whilst reducing the one largest modifiable factor, leading to poor outcomes in pregnancy, birth and for the neonate; smoking.

Chris Parker

Finance Director

Liberty Flights

Chris manages Liberty Flights with responsibility ranging from product development to in-market execution inclusive of both convenience retail and stop smoking services. Having worked in the industry since 2009 Chris has supported Liberty Flights’ efforts in engaging with stop smoking programmes to reduce the harm caused by smoking. Liberty Flights already work with a range of stop smoking services providing advice, training and products suitable to the setting in which they are intended to be used whether that be a secure inpatient facility or in the community.    

Helen Pearson

Senior Pharmacist

Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit.

‘Helen is a Senior Pharmacist within the Partnership Team at Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit. She currently leads MLCSU’s Smoking Cessation Service implementation support team. Over recent years she has also project managed a variety of projects including a collaboration with NHS England and NHS Specialist Pharmacy Service supporting patients with a learning disability and/or autism, and NHS England evaluations of the GP Community Pharmacy Consultation Service and Medicines Optimisation in Care Homes. Helen has a background of senior NHS medicines management experience, working across all sectors including GP practices, community pharmacies, local acute and specialist trusts and local authorities.

Melanie Perry

TTD Project Manager

British Thoracic Society

Melanie is currently managing a three-year BTS project, funded by NHSE, which involves supporting clinicians within hospital acute trusts to implement and improve tobacco dependency treatment services alongside the NHSE Long Term Plan delivery objectives. Melanie has over 30yrs experience in the NHS, nursing, within secondary and primary care followed by working within tobacco control and smoking cessation, whereby she successfully set up and led a hospital-based smoking cessation service for 13yrs. She has presented across many national platforms and is a free-lance trainer, working alongside Health Education England, NCSCT and De Montfort University.

Dr Francesca Pesola

Research Fellow in Statistics

Queen Mary University of London

Dr Pesola is a Chartered Statistician working at the Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine, QMUL. She has worked both the Department of Health and academia. Her research interests are varied with a specific interest in the field of smoking cessation.

Dr Ian Pope

Specialty Doctor in Emergency Medicine

University of East Anglia

Dr Ian Pope is a Specialty Doctor in Emergency medicine with a special interest in opportunistic behaviour change interventions. Ian is currently co-leading the Cessation of Smoking Trial in the Emergency Department, an NIHR funded RCT of a smoking cessation intervention across 6 EDs. Ian also leads the Physician Associate emergency medicine module at the University of East Anglia.

Dr Debbie Robson, RMN, PHD

Senior Lecturer in Tobacco Harm Reduction

King's College London

Debbie Robson RMN, PhD. Senior Lecturer on Tobacco Harm Reduction & Mental Health Nurse, King’s College London Debbie works with the Nicotine Research Group in the National Addiction Centre.  Her work involves evaluating tobacco dependence treatment pathways in mental health, substance use and acute settings, and also assessing the effectiveness and harms of vaping in young people and those with mental health problems. She is a co-author of several annual evidence reviews about vaping, commissioned by PHE/OHID and is a Trustee of ASH.

Ailsa Rutter


Fresh and Balance

Ailsa originally trained as a nurse and has worked in tobacco control since 1998. Her early work included heading up the Queensland Quit Campaign in Australia, managing Gateshead and South Tyneside NHS Stop Smoking Service and being Regional Tobacco Policy Manager for the North East. In 2005 Ailsa working with others launched Fresh the UK’s first regional tobacco control programme and has been its Director ever since. In 2014 Ailsa was awarded a World No Tobacco Day Medal by the WHO, an OBE in the New Year’s Honours 2017 for ‘services to tobacco control’. She is passionate about this work, having prematurely lost her father and auntie to COPD. She has also been closely involved in the running of Balance, the North East alcohol programme launched in 2009 in April 2021 became Director of Fresh and Balance, and is proud of the brilliant dedicated small team who work with so many committed partners.  

Samantha Ryder

Head of Infection Prevention & Safety

Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust

Sam Ryder qualified in 2004 as a Registered Adult Nurse and has experience of working across Acute, Community and Mental health settings. During her career Sam has worked, in acute medicine, critical care, infection prevention and control, physical health in mental health and clinical education. Sam is extremely committed to reducing health inequalities and improving the health and wellbeing of those suffering from mental health illnesses. As part of her current role she is leading on the implementation of the Treating Tobacco Dependency Programme within LSCft alongside other programmes to improve the health and wellbeing of people using LSCft services.

Neil Skinner

Retail Area Manager Yorkshire and North East

Totally Wicked

Neil is currently serving as the Retail Area Manager at Totally Wicked, having joined the business in 2017. With a personal history as a former smoker who made the switch to vaping in 2014, he is committed to advocating vaping as a quit aid and enabling smokers to transform their lives. His proficiency draws from a blend of practical client-facing experience and being involved in Health Improvement programmes. This diverse expertise equips Neil to actively participate in and facilitate training initiatives across a wide range of community projects.

Dr Kirstie Soar

Trial Manager

London South Bank University

Dr Kirstie Soar is Trial Manager of the NIHR funded project SCeTCH (Smoking Cessation for the Homeless), in the Centre for Addictive Behaviours Research (CABR), School of Applied Sciences, London South Bank University (LSBU).  She joined LSBU in 2020, having worked for the previous 20 years in the School of Psychology at the University of East London, where she was a Reader, Deputy Head of Department and led the Drugs and Addictive Behaviours Research Group. Dr Soar’s research interests are around the cognitive and psychobiological effects of recreational drug use (MDMA/Ecstasy, cannabis, cocaine, and Novel Psychoactive Substances) and more recently focus has shifted to vaping (both nicotine and cannabis), assessing the experiences of vapers, effects of vaping and the role of vapes in smoking cessation.  Her work is published widely, both nationally and internationally and is highly cited.  Her work has significant impact directly feeding into National Centre for Smoking Cessation Training (NCSCT) and Public Health England (PH) training guidelines and the Health and Social Care Committee Drugs Policy Inquiry (2019), and the UK Government Consultation: Advancing our Health: prevention in the 2020s Supporting Smokers to Quit.  Dr Soar has received grants from Alcohol Change UK and Sir Richard Stapleys Educational.  She has conducted consultancy work for the NCSCT, a health care consulting company – PharmaStrat, Royal Society of Medicine and Essex and Thurrock Drug Action Teams. 

Pete Stewart

Healthy Hospital and Community Programme Manager

Sheffield Health and Social Care Trust

Pete Stewart is the Smoke Free Lead for Sheffield Health and Social Care NHS FT, with 19 years' experience as a Registered Mental Health Nurse. In his current role as Healthy Hospital and Community Programme Manager, Pete leads the Trust's Tobacco Treatment Team (QUIT Team). The QUIT Programme is part of a South Yorkshire Integrated Care Board funded programme and one of the NHSE early implementer sites providing tobacco treatment for Trust staff and service users in our Inpatient and Community services. Pete has been involved in smoke free policy implementation, research and tobacco treatment service delivery since 2015.

Tracy Sutton

Operational Health and Wellbeing Manager

Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust

Tracy Sutton trained as a nurse until 2000 where she developed a keen interest in public health, behaviour change and the treatment and interventions to support people with addiction. Tracy has managed a number of community services which include specialist weight management, nutrition and dietetics, physical activity and community development projects. Since 2015 Tracy had developed and managed a specialist stop smoking service . Tracy is keen to support the implementation of Smoke Free and work in partnership to ensure that patients who have a mental health illness are offered an equitable and high quality service for the Treatment of Tobacco Dependency. Tracy Is currently working as the Health and Wellbeing Manager (smoke Free lead ) for LSCft.  

Hilary Wareing

Director of iPiP

Improving Performance in Practice

Hilary has a background in health service research and management as well as a clinical background in general nursing, midwifery and health visiting. Hilary’s main areas of interest are developing the wider public health workforce and supporting organisations to implement evidence-based practice and improve performance in practice. She is particular interested in using an asset-based approach in the development of public health initiatives and in gaining and maintaining compliance with public health policies and legislation. The areas of work she is currently involved in includes utilising the understanding of organisational culture to improve performance in maternity setting, using storytelling to improve staff engagement plus developing and applying sector led improvement tools to support the commissioning and delivery of public health interventions. Hilary led the development of babyClear, an evidence based whole-systems approach converting the evidence and guidance into practice that and is involved in the implementation of the NHS Long Term Plan in secondary care and mental health settings. She also has an interest in fuel poverty and is currently the Principal Investigator for a study focused on understanding the level of environmental carbon monoxide exposure during pregnancy. Hilary is a member of the Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge group, an Expert Advisor for the NICE Centre for Guidelines, a member of the ASH Advisory Council and the All Party Parliamentary CO Group’s (APPCOG) Healthcare Sub-Group and acts as an expert advisor to WHO Europe.

Brian Watts

Head of Public Sector Channel

Vape Dinner Lady

Brian has been a harm reduction advocate for over 14 years, since quitting a 30 cigarette a day smoking addiction using Electronic Cigarettes. Brian started working at Vape Dinner Lady in June of 2017 and had one goal, to bring harm reduction products to those in need. When Dinner Lady released their first disposable vape product in 2019, Brian had just completed his NCSCT training on Mental Health and realised that this was the time to start reaching out. Following a successful trial in Birmingham and Solihull NHS MHT, Brian and his colleague Nazim Set out to assist the NHS with smoking harm reduction and cessation, focussing on Mental Health. Brian and Nazim have an extreme passion for developing products suitable for all smoking cessation services and have developed products/solutions for both secure Mental Health Services, Prison Services and Community Stop Smoking Services. Knowing that a retail product was not the best suited for all environments, Brian along with Nazim and the Dinner Lady team are continually looking at how to improve and regulate nicotine dosing using vapes and are one of only a very few companies that can offer a full nicotine step down program using disposable products designed for Mental Health facilities. Brian also assisted in creating a full and complete recovery and recycling program for all his Healthcare partners, where show 100% recoverability and recyclability of the products can be shown, offering this free of charge and without increasing costs to services.Brian has conducted training sessions on vaping for many Healthcare partners, including vapes function, how an e-liquid is made, and its chemical makeup. Additionally creating both written materials and videos to assist Service Users as well as Healthcare professionals. He has also previously spoken at many events including SCAH 2021.  

Liz Woodworth

Professional Lead

ABL Health Ltd - Smoking Cessation Services

Liz Woodworth is the Professional Lead for all of ABL Health`s Specialist Stop Smoking Services nationally. In 2018 the commissioners in one locality agreed that ABL could provide vapes to clients by direct supply. Based on the positive outcomes from this locality the use of vapes are now an integral part of other service offers, including utilising vapes as harm minimisation approach for services working with SMI and substance misuse clients.

Mary Yates

Clinical Expert, National Tobacco Dependence Trainer

Mary is a Learning Disability and Mental Health Nurse. She provided leadership for the smoke free programme in South London & Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust from 2014 to 2022. She was expert advisor to the NICE committees when they developed guidance on smoking in 2013 and 2020 and was an active member of the Mental Health & Smoking Partnership. She now works as a National Tobacco Dependence Trainer supporting implementation of smoke free policies in mental health and learning disability services.