Meet The Team
The Staff
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Anita Ollerenshaw   
Farm Manager

Anita started at Rhubarb Farm as a volunteer.  Her background is in transport logistics, HR and retail, and the experience she brings to her role as Manager is invaluable in juggling all the issues we have on site. 

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Richard Reddish   
Site Supervisor/Support Manager

Richard started at Rhubarb Farm as a volunteer.  From a farming background, he brings much-needed knowledge and experience of farming, including animal husbandry and agricultural machinery.

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Helen Health
Volunteer Coordinator

Before joining Rhubarb Farm Helen worked in adult learning for over 16 years, predominately as a project manager, managing the development of digital learning resources for adults with low level literacy skills and apprenticeship programmes.  She has come to Rhubarb Farm looking for a complete change in role and a different environment.

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Joanne O’Connor  
Youth Worker

Jo originally trained to work in education, and worked as a teaching assistant and other support roles in school.  She has also worked in retail and when not working at the Farm, she is a wedding venue stylist.

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Wendy Shone          
Book-keeper   

Wendy brings many years experience as a book-keeper. After life took her from Langwith to South Africa, she's now landed back in the village, where she keeps us very well organised and on the right financial track! 

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Christine Breach  
Horticulture Lead

Chris worked in the food industry for many years , including ten years with our partners, The School of Artisan Food, which is where she first came into contact with Rhubarb Farm, working on collaborations such as the Chatsworth Show and the School’s kitchen garden. Her own experiences of the therapeutic benefits of gardening have helped prompt a change of direction to work in  supporting volunteers with substance misuse issues. She loves to cook and has always been an enthusiastic amateur gardener.

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Diane Gravestock   
Support Worker

Diane joined Rhubarb Farm after retiring from a career as a Probation Officer.  She brings long experience of working with people as well as being a qualified yoga teacher.

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Melanie Richardson  
Food Champion

Mel has spent her career in catering providing all aspects of food service. She spent many years running a hotel and planning weddings, functions and corporate events. She has a real passion to reduce food waste and loves preserving.

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Wes Key  
Training Manager

Wes is the Training Manager at the Farm and is responsible for the education, training and personal development of both staff and volunteers.

His diverse background includes stints working in IT, education, sports development and small business.

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Elaine Czipak
Support Worker (casual)

Elaine previously worked in the NHS for 34 yrs and for the last 8 as a community Physiotherapist.

In her spare time she is part of her residents association helping to organise events in her village. She loves gardening and takes the lead in planting flower tubs in her village.

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Paul Hancox
Driver

Paul has joined Rhubarb Farm despite trying to retire!  He had a career in the armed forces as a Mechanical/Electrical Engineer, serving in various countries as a senior NCO.  After his army service he made a career in bus and coach manufacturing in Birmingham. After relocating to Chesterfield he began a business manufacturing small and medium coaches, and then beer containers.   His engineering and driving skills are invaluable in maintenance of the vehicles, and transporting volunteers to the Farm.

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Mark Ratcliffe
Garden Maintenance Team

Mark originally started as a volunteer at Rhubarb Farm, before joining the staff team. 

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Isabel Scarle   
Green Prescribing Mental Health Worker

Isabel came to the Farm as a volunteer struggling with her mental health and burn out. After experiencing the benefits of horticultural therapy first hand, she joined the team wanting to help other volunteers the way the Farm helped her. Her background is supporting people with complex needs in the homeless community working for social housing organisations.

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Carol Lewis

 Support Worker/Food Worker

Bio to follow

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Hannah Lavery   
Youth Worker

Bio to follow

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Josh Davis   
Support Worker

Bio to follow

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Julie Hall  
Support Worker

Bio to follow

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Sharna West    Horticulture Assistant (Kickstart)

Bio to follow

Managing Director
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Jennie Street (Managing Director and Board member)

Jennie Street has 30 years development experience in Sheffield, Derbyshire, Hong Kong, Ethiopia, Sudan, and Eritrea. She has worked in community action and rights, mental health, housing, gypsy action, and refugee rehabilitation. She worked on a community allotments project involving residents in Rotherham, and on an organic therapeutic horticultural project in NE Derbs. She has experience of management, audit, evaluation and project management. Jennie opens her own garden each year for a local open gardens scheme and for 2 years under the National Gardens Scheme (Yellow Book).  She co-wrote a book "Red Sea Railway", published 2010.

The Board
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John Beazer (non executive director)

John Beazer was formerly CEO of Yes2Work Ltd, a small social firm helping disabled jobseekers back into work and employing disabled people itself. John works on the strategic side of Rhubarb Farm, where his 30 years experience as a senior civil servant and his IT expertise is invaluable.


 

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SIMON TAYLOR (Non-Executive Director)

Simon Taylor worked in care management at a residential school for students with language disorders and autism. He then spent 12 years working in local authority economic development, managing European funding streams and developing business support schemes for social enterprises. He then worked for Shared Lives Plus, a charity and the UK network of micro and family-based providers of care services. Currently he works for Derbyshire County Council as Social Pedagogy, Senior Staff Development Officer in the Children and Younger Adults Department. 

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PETER FINCH (Non-Executive Director) 

Peter has worked for Smith Bros Electrical Wholesalers in Doncaster for the past 26 years and currently holds the post of Sales Manager and is very highly regarded and respected within the electrical industry.

 

Pete first joined the Board after a visit to Rhubarb Farm and arranging the funding and installation of a full site CCTV and intruder system to protect the Farm.  Pete is very active in seeking practical support for the Farm from a variety of suppliers he works with, and brings important business advice and guidance to the Board.

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GARETH DILLON (Non-Executive Director) 

Gareth is a qualified Mining and Civil Engineer with over 30 years of industry experience and was appointed Managing Director of Chesterfield based contractor NT Killingley in November 2018. Killingley have a long relationship with Rhubarb Farm and have provided much appreciated assistance, equipment and materials over the years. Having made a number of visits to help with various issues and being so impressed with the Farm's community engagement, Gareth was delighted to accept an offer to join the Board of Directors and brings his diverse business experience to the Board.

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ANGELA KEYWORTH (Non-Executive Director) 

Angela comes from a background of sales and consultancy.  She has lived and worked in countries such as Malta and Dubai for 12 years, where she ran her own businesses in real estate.  Angela returned to the UK in April 2011 and became one of the first women in the UK to qualify as a Green Deal, Carbon Energy Assessor.  She has a technical background in energy saving and has worked with a portfolio of large-scale commercial clients.   Angela is passionate about the future of Rhubarb Farm and the work it does for so many less privileged people in society.   

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MEGAN BLAKE

An expert in household food security and local community reliance in economically wealthy contexts, Dr. Blake is a geographer with more than 20 years of experience conducting research with households, community organisations, charities, commercial organisations local and national government, and grant and trust organisations to generate stakeholder informed research. Dr. Blake’s research has made a significant and fundamental change in communities across and beyond the UK, forming an impact case study submitted to the REF 2021, by the University of Sheffield. Her Food Ladders framework is now being adopted by Local Authorities across the UK and internationally, third sector organisations, government departments, and industry to structure and evaluate their efforts to address food insecurity and its effects at the local scale.

 

In addition to providing ad hoc advice and support to numerous public sector, private, and third sector organisations, Dr Blake is also an academic advisor to Feeding Britain and a founder member of the XCess surplus food redistribution network.

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REBECCA DERMODY-SIMMONS

Rebecca has worked in Public Sector procurement for over 20 years and is currently the Chief Executive of national procurement consortium, Efficiency East Midlands (EEM).

 

EEM chose Rhubarb Farm as their charity of the year in 2019 and helped to fund and purchase the Rhubarb Farm mini bus. EEM is a not for profit organisation who over the last five years has distributed nearly £2million in community and charity donations. Rebecca is passionate about the work EEM does to support the local communities supported by EEM members and is proud to be directly involved with Rhubarb Farm. Rebecca hopes that her procurement knowledge, expertise and supply chain contacts will enable her to provide advice and support on future projects.