Meet the Team

Bernie Wood image
Bernie Wood

Hi, my name is Bernie Wood, and I have been the General Manager of Talbot House Support Centre for 25 years. I have five children, and my youngest has Downs Syndrome. I came to Talbot House in 1978 searching for the support I desperately needed from parents like myself and so I now support other parents just like me.

I am an optimist and to stay focused I always try to look on the "bright side". I set realistic goals, accept compliments graciously, avoid dodging my mistakes and I admit to and apologise for hurting others. I am active in carers causes, I am passionate about parent carers rights and will try to educate others about learning disabilities so they understand their new knowledge!!

To contact Bernie you can e-mail

Frances Crake image
Frances Crake

Fran came to Talbot House in 2006 to tackle the admin and quickly became a very important part of the Talbot House team. She always makes herself available whenever the parents who come to the centre need anything and later became a parent support worker.

Fran has the knack of soothing all situations that need it and she contributes so much to the running of Talbot House; arranging weekends away, carers lunches, parent consultations, organising the pamper service, and home visits for older carers. Fran will never leave a task alone until it is completed successfully, she is a valuable asset to Talbot House.

To contact Fran you can e-mail

Jacqui Hyde image
Jacqui Hyde

Jacqui joined Talbot House as a support worker in 2008 following a career change from being a legal secretary. Jacqui is a strong mum who single handedly raises her two children. Her youngest has a significant speech and language disorder, ADHD and learning disabilities.

Jacqui is a unique character bubbly and fun, her straightforward thinking is appreciated by parents as well as her fantastic correspondence skills. Jacqui's letter writing especially with legal matters is second to none. Jacqui has recently been working with parents with court issues, child protection and vulnerable adults. 

To contact Jacqui you can e-mail

Lucy Adams image
Lucy Adams

Lucy joined Talbot House as a support worker having graduated with a degree in social work. She also experienced 6 years working in a residential home for adults with learning difficulties, as well as volunteering for Home Start.

Her role is similar to that of Fran and Jacqui, and involves seeing to the needs of parent carers and to provide the support that they need on a daily basis, whether it be the filling out of forms, advice or even emotional support.

If you would like to contact Lucy, please email

Kylie Malone

Please email Kylie on:


Abigail Birch

 Please email Abigail

Tel: 07939 245279

Lesley Joynson
Viv Wells
Denise Price (Treasurer)

Denise has been aware of the work of Talbot House for many years as she was Lead Commissioner for Learning Disability Services. Upon her retirement from Manchester City Council she joined the board in 2013.

Denise’s considerable professional knowledge, understanding of and empathy for people with learning disabilities and their carers is an incredible asset to our management team. Denise has also been able to bring her knowledge of budget management to the role of treasurer.

Denise is very ‘hands on’ and also carries out additional volunteer work with us providing support and advice to parent carers.

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Helen Bottomley

Helen is a parent carer and has been involved with Talbot House for 30 years. Helen is married to John and she has twin daughters aged 32 years old, Nikki and Claire. Claire has multiple and profound disabilies and Nikki is University educated. Helen devotes most of her free time to Talbot House. She contributes in ways that only Helen can do from decorating, gardening, designing and sewing costumes for our Christmas shows. She is infact a women of all trades and master of everyone. In fact she is the only one who can make Bernie do as she is told!!!

Helen became a Talbot House Trustee in 2009.

Deirdre Webb

Deirdre joined Talbot House as a trustee following her retirement from Manchester City Council in May 2013, where she was a Commissioning Officer. Deirdre became aware of Talbot House very early in her career over 27 years ago and was impressed by the devotion and sheer doggedness of Bernie and her helpers, which over time has not changed.

Prior to working as a commissioning officer Deirdre was an Auxiliary Nurse at Wythenshawe Hospital for 15 years. Deirdre also has specialist knowledge of supporting people with learning disabilities in forensic settings, and therefore brings a wealth of experience to her role as Trustee.

Deirdre has 2 birth children, 5 foster children and is a grandmother to 10 and great grandmother to 1. She is also a very hands on trustee and volunteers at Talbot House providing advice and support to parent carers and we value her no nonsense but compassionate approach.

Paul Cassidy
Phil Ascott
June Jackson