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St John & St Anne

As well as being passionate about making a difference to the wellbeing of alms-house residents, St John & St Anne's new dynamic chief executive Doreen Woodward has the goal of forging stronger links between the charity and the Rutland community.

14th Chapel at St John & St Annes

This will result in the charity's 14th century chapel being open to the public on the 15th September between 10am and 2pm. Visitors will be able to find out about the history of this hidden 14th century gem, and to discover the work of the alms-house charity today.

Doreen who took up the role in June, has extensive experience in leadership and housing schemes for vulnerable client groups, including older people. This made her the ideal candidate to replace Paul Martin, who retired earlier this year after transforming and building up both the staff team and finances during his eight years with St John & St Anne (SJSA).

Doreen has worked as a CEO in housing and support charities for older people and for people with disabilities in Warwickshire and the Southwest.

Doreen said: 'I am delighted to be joining such a historic charity as St John and St Anne's and I look forward to helping to shape its vision for the future with the governors, staff and residents.

There is such a huge benefit to residents when they live in a supportive community and there has been recent national press coverage of how people living in alms-houses enjoy longer and happier lives than people who live elsewhere.

I look forward to working with key stakeholders in the area and above all, with the residents, to build a strong and happy future for the charity.

The charity currently provides homes for 117 older people across five sites in Oakham and Rutland and has scored very highly in its resident satisfaction surveys.”


Doreen and her dedicated staff team is dependent on the board of governors whose diverse backgrounds bring a cross section of expertise to the governance of the charity. Because governor involvement is time limited, this means there is a need to recruit governors on a regular basis.

The charity is particularly looking to recruit governors prepared to engage with resident care and interests, or with property expertise. Financial, legal, care and IT skills would also be of much value. Importantly, applications from anyone who feels they could contribute are welcome.


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