A Better Start Southend

Our Team

A Better Start Southend is proud to have an expert team with backgrounds ranging from early years practice to health, education and social care. The team covers project and programme management, business support, research and evaluation, marketing and communications, and a dedicated crèche service. Additional expertise is provided by partners including specialist public health expertise and data analytics. All are committed to working alongside parents and the community, our partners and providers, to ensure Southend-on-Sea is the best place in the country to bring up a child and be a parent.

Alex Khaldi

A Better Start Southend Independent Chair

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Dr Nia Thomas


Email Dr Nia Thomas

Nicky Ficken

Programme Manager

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Dr Clare Littleford

Research and Evaluation Manager

Email Dr Clare Littleford

Hannah Fitchew

Strategy and Finance Lead

Email Hannah Fitchew

Emma Swan

Governance & Executive Support Officer

Email Emma Swan

Liz Green

Governance & Executive Support Officer (maternity cover)

Email Liz Green

Laura Burke

Operations Manager

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Rosemary Ersser

Finance Officer

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Chirsty Aggas

Business Support Administrator

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Ella Greaves-King

Contracts and Compliance Lead

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Carolyn Smith

Project Manager

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Zoe Hill

Project Manager

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Michelle Welbourn

Project Manager

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Benji Andrews

Project Manager

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Dr Elizabeth Buzza

Research, Evaluation and Impact Lead

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Mikki Barrett

Research, Evaluation & Impact Officer

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Nathaniel Owen

Research, Evaluation & Impact Assistant

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Cheryl Greenway

Assistant Project Manager

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Natalie Taylor

Assistant Project Manager

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Sarah Butler

Project Support Officer

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Sue Hinton

Project Support Officer

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Riskat Abimbola

Project Support Officer

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Melanie Larke

Communications and Marketing Lead

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Alicia Bannister

Communications and Marketing Officer

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Joanne Armstrong

Communications and Marketing Officer

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Danielle Dodwell

Interim Videography Assistant

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Stephanie Stevenson

Interim Events Officer

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Erin Brennan-Douglas

Senior Public Health Principal

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Richard Warren

Senior Data & Performance Analyst

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Gary Stroud

Data and Performance Analyst

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Professor Vicky Joffe

Professor of Speech and Language Dean of the School of Health and Social Care, University of Essex

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Dr Aaron Wyllie

Lecturer and Programme Lead, Division of Social Justice, School of Health and Social Care, University of Essex Co-Principal Investigator, ABSS

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Kathryn Chard

Senior Research Officer, University of Essex Co-Principal Investigator, ABSS

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