Sydenham Garden appoints new Chair of Trustees

Jim Sikorski retires as Chair of Trustees and Sydenham Garden appoints Julia Brandreth as new Chair

Sydenham Garden, the unique wellbeing centre helping people in their journey with mental and ill-health, is pleased to announce the appointment of Julia Brandreth as its Chair of Trustees, replacing Dr Jim Sikorski with effect from 14 May 2019.

Julia is a local resident and an experienced trustee. She is currently a market trader in Greenwich, specializing in vintage goods and also volunteers for local organisations. She was previously Head of Communications at the National Union of Teachers, with prior roles in TUC affiliates and as a community organizer. Her volunteering work in gardening, her experience of mental health issues, campaigning, communications and leadership positions will be of great help to Sydenham Garden as it continues its development.

Incoming Chair Julia said “I am very excited to be joining the wonderful team of co-workers, volunteers, staff and trustees at Sydenham Garden. Working together we will continue to build on the heritage Jim and others have created.”

Jim, the Founder, is stepping-down as Chair as planned after 17 years, in order to devote more time to his other interests but will remain a Trustee for his current term and intends to remain a committed volunteer too. In recognition of his exceptional drive and dedication to Sydenham Garden he has been appointed as Honorary President.

He said “After a lengthy recruitment process we are thrilled that Julia has become Chair, having joined as a Trustee in April. Her personal skills, team ethic and relevant experience will help to drive our services and organization into our next three-year plan.”

Tom Gallagher, Director, said “Jim is impossible to replace and so we are blessed that he will remain a constant in the organization. He was one of the first GPs to prescribe the role of gardening in the treatment of mental health and the development of Sydenham Garden has been masterminded by him, with the support of our wonderful staff, volunteers and co-workers through the years. “

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