Staff Governors are elected and sit on the Council of Governors to represent staff members’ views within the four staff constituencies (medical; nursing; other clinical, scientific, technical or therapeutic staff; and non-clinical).

Ten Staff Governors

Declan Hyland


I have been employed as a Consultant in general adult psychiatry in Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust since August 2016.  I work on a full-time basis at Clock View Hospital, one of the Trust’s inpatient units, where I look after a caseload of 23 inpatients across two wards.  Having completed almost all of my six years of psychiatry training in Mersey Care, working at various inpatient and community sites across the Trust and in various subspecialties of psychiatry, I always knew I wanted a Consultant post in the trust.  Aside of my clinical role, I hold numerous roles with the Royal College of Psychiatrists and am the lead for undergraduate psychiatry with the Liverpool School of Medicine. 

Whilst I am passionate about medical education, recruitment to psychiatry and training, I am equally passionate about patient care and ensuring that Mersey Care provides high quality and safe care to all of those patients under its care.  I am fully committed to representing my medical staff colleagues in Mersey Care and ensuring their views are heard at Board level.  I relish the opportunity to be an elected governor on the Trust Board and to do justice to this privileged role I have been given.

First term 1 October 2021-30 April 2024

New governor elected

First term 1 May 2022 – 30 April 2025

Mark Chandley


My name is Dr Mark Chandley (Dr by virtue of gaining a PhD) I am a Senior Clinical Nurse based in the secure division. I was born in Anfield and I am very proud of my working class, industrial origins.

I began as a Nursing Assistant (interestingly I would never get a job in Mersey Care today as I was only a builder back then). I worked up completing a degree and PhD in 2007 at the Manchester Metropolitan. I have worked in secure services for almost forty years and I still enjoy myself. 

I work also lecturing on violence and aggression across the UK and amongst others I have taught 3000 bus drivers for Nottingham City Transport.

I was seriously ill in 2015 and similar to long COVID it left me ill for a while, Mersey Care usually treated me as I wish others to be treated, that low point in life was a high point in the NHS.

I will bring passion to this role. Most of Mersey Care is robust but occasionally the best of trusts fall short. I put myself up for governor to be a conduit between the members & public and the trust board. I want to help the little guy.

I know from experience that the view from the top is different to the view at the bottom and I want the board to know both views. Your views on the importance of the services we offer. The services we offer often aspire to be world class, but I have been around a long time and I am aware that a great service can get itself into trouble very quickly. I want to be an excellent, reliable and accessible representative.

First term 1 October 2020 to 30 September 2023

Nicola Gelling


I am committed to provide patient centred care and to ensure all services work together to give our patients the best care possible in the community. I am confident and passionate about patient care, and I will challenge, and I am happy to be challenged to ensure that as a trust we are delivering safe, effective, responsive, caring and well-led services for our patients, service-users and staff.

I commenced my Nursing career as an Auxiliary Nurse in Broadgreen Hospital in 1992. I have worked within Sefton for 20 years where I started as a D Grade District Nurse. In 2013, I became a Community Matron which is a role that I thoroughly enjoy as I work with all members of the Multidisciplinary team regularly. I feel that I understand how it is to work at all grades within the Nursing service and the demands on each role within the team.

I regularly Mentor and Support Colleagues to assist with the development of their knowledge and skills. I enjoy Mentoring and teaching colleagues and staff as I feel it is important that we share our knowledge and skills to continuously provide the best possible care to patient and service users. As a Mentor I get a great deal of personal and professional pride in seeing colleagues and students develop professionally and feel supported in their roles. 

Patients are why we are here, and we should not lose focus of the need for High Quality Patient Centred Care and always ensuring their needs are met. As a Nurse within Merseycare it is important to me that all Patients, Service users and Staff are treated with dignity and respect at all times.

I am extremely honoured to have been voted by my peers to be a staff governor. I am passionate about Nursing and I feel that I have the experience and passion to represent my colleagues. I will endeavour to ensure that the staff’s views are represented by me in a constructive way. I hope to work in partnership with the board to voice the views of staff.

First term 1 October 2020 to 30 September 2023

Liam Stowell


The voice of nurses is often ignored or suppressed in our society and I am determined to get this changed. We are thousands strong and together can make a difference.

I have worked within the NHS for the last 10 years. During this time, I have worked predominantly in children’s mental health services, from inpatient to community and now in crisis services. I’m from Bury but worked in Manchester mental health services at the start of my career before moving to Warrington, when I qualified as a nurse. I come from a family that have worked in the NHS and I am also married to a nurse. Nursing and the NHS have been an integral part of my life both professionally and personally and I want to continue this legacy.

I am truly a passionate individual about mental health nursing. Throughout my career I have often stood up for those who are oppressed or discriminated against. I have done this within the workplace and society. Nursing is a profession that requires great personal sacrifice. We often have to leave loved ones at home in order to support and help others who are vulnerable and traumatised. This can have a significant impact on our own wellbeing and is often not recognised or taken seriously. I want to be at the forefront for those who feel that nursing is not taken seriously and cement our place in society to showcase what invaluable and lifesaving work we do.

First term 1 October 2021 to 30 April 2024

Gie Peneche


Keeping our service safe – is the driving force for my aspirations of becoming a staff governor. For me, providing safe patient care is not only about evidence based practise but also about the interaction, experience and the psychological safety of both patients and staff. It is therefore my passion to promote ideas and views, representing fellow colleagues and promoting better staff experiences, which in turn will improve the patient’s experience of service.

As one of the Just and Learning Ambassadors I am already part of cultivating an open, just and transparent culture. If elected, I will draw upon these skills to represent staff views, challenge decisions and ensure that issues specific to services will be addressed. Through my experiences, I have amassed and have built resilience that makes me flexible, courageous and well-rounded individual. The challenges that I have personally experienced over physiotherapy career of 20 years, have taught me to find my voice and speak up when I needed to; make my own ethical decisions everyday no matter how much pressure is being placed on me and the lessons I have learnt from colleagues’ experiences. Their wisdom is the reason why I enjoy the opportunity to collaborate.

My personal experiences and attributes have led me to believe that I would be well suited to be a governor and all that it entails. Furthermore, it is just simply to make a difference at a place where everyone is welcomed, and I can only attain that with your support.

Second term 1 October 2021 to 30 April 2024

New governor elected

First term 1 May 2022 – 30 April 2025

New governor elected

First term 1 May 2022 – 30 April 2025

New governor elected

First term 1 May 2022 to 30 April 2025

Chris Boland


I have 14 years’ experience in Merseycare in Corporate Services and over the past year I have spent most of the year supporting Local Services at Hartley Hospital.

I came to Merseycare as a staff member after a long spell in the Service Users and Carers Forum, where I served on working parties and interview panels and shortlisted candidates.  I have a long history of campaigning on Equality and Human Rights issues in Mersey Care and served as an Assistant Equality Advisor within the Workplace team.  I organised Hate Crime workshops with the Anthony Walker Foundation and administered Unconscious Bias training.  I have brought those experiences to bear in Local Services, supporting both staff and service users. I also helped devise Level 2 suicide prevention training for staff.

I have a long record of public service in Mersey Care and the Civil Service, where I managed teams in the Tax Credit Office and worked as a National Insurance Inspector.  I have an in-depth knowledge of both Health and Welfare issues and experience of working alongside senior management in the Public Service.  I have highlighted Equality issues in Merseycare and have brought it to the attention of managers when work practices have fallen short of those policies and values.  I am able to master policies and briefing documents and highlight ways in which they might be improved.  Above all, I am committed to ensuring that both staff and service users are treated with dignity in the way they deserve.

First term 1 October 2021-30 April 2024