“Volunteers do not necessarily have the time; they just have the heart .”

– Elizabeth Andrew

Behind every charity there is a Board of Trustees. These Trustees are the unpaid – and often unsung – heroes of the charity sector. Our Trustees are so passionate about supporting the military community, that they voluntarily give up their own time to oversee the running of The Ripple Pond. They all work incredibly hard, making hugely important decisions about how we operate, and about the services that we provide to our Members. Theirs is a vital role, and we wouldn’t be where we are without them.

brigadier andrew wood


We are delighted to announce the appointment of Brigadier Andrew Wood as new Chair of the Board of Trustees, with effect from 01 July 2022. You can read Andrew's full bio by clicking the button below.



Rachel is our human calculator! She’s an accountant with a public sector background, so has a passion for getting the numbers right when it matters most. Having worked alongside the military, Rachel understands how essential the support provided by the Ripple Pond is. When she’s not working, Rachel spends her time running races and being bossed about by her dogs.



David is currently the Director of Fundraising for Lincs and Notts Air Ambulance, having previously held roles with City of York Council, Cancer Research UK’s National events team, St Luke’s Hospice in Sheffield and, more recently, as Head of Supporter Fundraising at Help For Heroes. David’s experience of working with beneficiaries, supporters and colleagues at Help for Heroes had a profoundly positive impact on him, and he cites H4H’s Big Battlefield Bike Ride as being one of the most humbling experiences of his life. David had no hesitation in applying for the role of Trustee at The Ripple Pond, and hopes that his 20 years in fundraising will be of benefit to our team, supporters, and beneficiaries. One of David’s proudest achievements was being part of the 2012 Olympic Games organisational team, and having responsibility for key stages of the men’s and women’s cycling and outdoor swim. Strangely enough, David’s appearance on the Channel 5 remake of ‘It’s a Knockout’ doesn’t feature on his list of proudest moments…! Outside of work, David is a big Ice Hockey fan – playing, coaching, and watching. When he’s not driving up and down the country to play in freezing buildings, usually at ridiculous hours of the day, and having people hitting compressed rubber at almost 80mph at him, David enjoys nothing more than spending time with his partner, three children and their Labrador, Ashbee.


Media and Communications

Jess has over 15 years PR, Communications and Marketing experience, working with a variety of consumer, corporate and third sector brands including McDonald’s, Jaguar Land Rover and Age UK. Having started out in London, Jess then moved to Wiltshire to join Help for Heroes when it was in its infancy and spent 10 years working within their Communications & Marketing team. There she had a particular focus on encouraging veterans and their families to seek help and also led the charity’s rebrand and brand development work. Jess’s career to date has given her a passion for people and brands with purpose. She believes in the power of a team and is inspired by people achieving things they never thought possible. Coming from a military background with her father, grandfather, uncle, aunt and husband having all served, Jess joined The Ripple Pond in November 2020 as she wanted to combine her passion for the Armed Forces Community with her Marketing & Communications experience. Outside of work, Jess enjoys spending time with her 3-year old daughter, running, good food and getting to see the rugby when she can.


Simon is a serving member of the British Army, and was very seriously injured in 2010, during his first of two tours to Afghanistan: “Having got married in the months after injury, I have first-hand experience of the recovery pathway, and the impact that the process can have on the loved ones of the injured person. Critically, my experiences also exposed the gap in support available to adult family members of injured personnel. I saw how such a service can improve the ability of these loved ones to care for the injured person, and to cope with the complex and stressful situations within which they can find themselves. When the opportunity to join TRP came up, I jumped at the chance to help drive positive change on this issue. I am determined to keep highlighting the importance of supporting those who support current or previous members of our Armed Forces who have sustained physical injuries or mental ill health due to their service - you’re an inspiration.”

Jackie Watts

Jessica Cheesman

Member Representative