The Leigh Neighbours Project has a management board (which we call the Partnership Board) which is responsible for the strategic direction and control of the project. That includes responsibility for planning and prioritising, finances, volunteering and the work of contracted workers.
The Partnership Board has a majority of local residents on it (this is one of the rules set by our funders at the lottery).
If you’d like to apply to join the Leigh Neighbours Partnership Board, download and complete our Partnership Board Application »
Meet the Partnership Board
“As a mum, I know just how important it is to invest in our kids’ futures. We need to find ways to channel our young peoples’ talents, provide positive role models, and create exciting opportunities for their growth and personal development. That’s why I got involved in Leigh Neighbours, so I could help make a positive difference for their future. I’m also passionate about recycling, so it’s really important to me that any projects we embark on, whether environmental ones such as Incredible Edible or educational projects such as crafts for children, features some element of upcycling!”
Helen Ahmed – Headteacher at Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School
“I’m the headteacher at Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School, which lies within the Leigh Neighbours project area. I agreed to get involved with the charity because I wanted to support the other members in ‘making a difference’ in the area. Over the past 5 years the children at our school have enjoyed attending the hanging basket workshops, where they plant baskets to put around our school to make it bright and cheerful. The children and members of their families also enjoy the bike workshops which ensure their bikes are in good working order. Leigh Neighbours works alongside members of the local community on many worthwhile causes in the neighbourhood. I am proud to be a member of Leigh Neighbours and know we do make a difference to the lives of local people.”
Cllr Dane Anderton
“As one of the youngest Councillors in the borough, I am proud to represent the Leigh West Ward and be able to work with a range of inspiring community groups. I was born and raised locally, and this is why I want to see our area do well for future generations. To achieve this I invest my time with organisations that make a difference for example; being a School Governor at Newton Westpark Primary School, Trustee Director of Citizens Advice for Wigan and Leigh and now working on the board of Leigh Neighbours Project plus many more in our ward and Town. Therefore, I see one of my roles as supporting and linking community groups and organisations together so they get the right resources to help them achieve maximum impact in what they do. All residents have a right to start well in life, live well, have aspirations with equal opportunity and feel safe in their area. By working together we can achieve more for our area!”
Cllr Dane Anderton
“Because I am a landscape gardener, I often take before & after photos to see the improvements we have made to a piece of land. I can relate this to the work we do within the Leigh Neighbours project area. It is very satisfying to me to look back at our successes with the many varied and diverse projects we have been involved with, particularly as a local resident. I am always on the lookout to see where we can make a difference within our community in the future, it is important to me that we invest whatever spare time we have to achieve this.”
A busy mum who loves her job and is a passionate community volunteer, Michelle has since 2018 also found the time to become a Board Member for Leigh Neighbours! Together with her colleagues on the Board, Michelle plays a part in helping to decide where the Lottery funding should be invested for the greatest strategic benefit for the whole community.
Michelle is keen on working on projects which help to raise the aspirations of young people, whilst building confidence and developing skills.
Cllr Susan Greensmith
“I’m immensely proud to have been a local councillor for Leigh West since 2009 and the Mayor of Wigan Borough in 2018/19. I was born and raised in Leigh, and I’ve always been actively involved in the community.
I’m currently a governor at Sacred Heart RC Primary School, and I’m also a lay person at St Peter’s Church where I deliver Holy Communion. Working for the benefit of young people and families is a particular passion of mine.
I run a ‘messy church’ for the community from St Peter’s school hall, which allows young families to come together and take part in fun, educational activities. I’m delighted to be working with my fellow members on the Leigh Neighbours board in helping to improve the quality of life for people in our local neighbourhood.”
Cllr Susan Greensmith
“I have lived in this area for 21 years. As a resident, parishioner at a local church, someone who works in the area and most importantly a parent with a child at a local school in the area, I want to help make the area a better place to live, work and play and keep it sustainable. Over the years the area has gone into decline. When I moved to the area, it was an area that had so much going for it and over the years this has sadly declined in so many ways. I have seen the great work that Leigh Neighbours has and is continuing to do and I want to be a part of this legacy, I believe that we need to all work together and make the area a great neighbourhood, somewhere to be proud of, rather than seeing and hearing all the negative comments. We can all do our bit and this is the reason behind me joining the group. I want my children to be proud of the area they live in and my neighbours to feel safe and happy in their community.”
Dawn Hurst – Headteacher at Leigh Central Primary School
“I’ve lived and taught in Leigh for over ten years and I am now in the privileged position of being Headteacher at Leigh Central Primary School . I joined the Leigh Neighbours Project Board as I am passionate about offering the best life chances and opportunities I can to the children who attend our school. I believe that the local community plays a vital part in this and by working with the project to improve Leigh, our children will be able to succeed in the future.”
Meet the Team
Stephen has worked in Leigh for over 30 years, first in the public sector for the Council and latterly in the voluntary sector. He is passionate about community development and making a difference. He has been a governor at a local school and was a Trustee Director for a local charity for a number of years alongside volunteering for a number of good causes.
When Stephen isn’t working he is happiest outdoors – he runs with Leigh Harriers AC, is a keen cyclist, rock-climber and mountaineer.
Sue has been involved with the Leigh Neighbours Project since 2009. She started her working life at one of the ‘Big Four’ accountancy companies and has spent the latter part of her career working in the charity and voluntary sector. She is actively involved in the local community, serving as a Governor at a local primary school and volunteering as a member of the supervisory team at Unify Credit Union. When she isn’t working she can be found with her camera in her hands.
Martyn has worked in and around Leigh for over 20 years, having moved north to manage the Turnpike Gallery. He works as a freelance arts curator, educator and visual artist. In addition to exhibiting his work in galleries across the UK, Martyn manages projects with artists and communities in Greater Manchester and Yorkshire.