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Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust is governed by a Board of Directors. It's made up of Executive Directors, appointed to specific roles within the organisation, and Non-Executive Directors, who bring a range of external expertise with them.

Alan Burns2

Alan Burns, Chairman

Alan was appointed as Chairman on 20 December 2018.  He has many years' experience as a strategic health authority chief executive and is currently chairman of Kettering General Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.  Alan was previously chairman of Hinchingbrooke Hospital and Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow.  He has also been involved in national work on public sector reform and research and development, and was vice chairman of the NHS Confederation.  

 1 Chief Executive Simon Weldon

Simon Weldon, Group Chief Executive

Simon was appointed as Group Chief Executive for Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust  and Kettering General Hospital NHS Foundation Trust on 1 July 2020.  Simon was appointed as chief executive of Kettering General Hospital in July 2018, prior to which he was director of operations and delivery within NHS England.  As regional chief operating officer for NHS England in London Simon's responsibilities included public health, primary care and specialised commissioning.  He has extensive experience of acute contracting and performance.

Non-executive directors

Rachel Parker

Rachel Parker

Rachel Parker was appointed as a non-executive director on 1 January 2020. She has several years' board level experience of managing operations and improving performance through a combination of leadership and strategic planning.

  Jill Houghton NED

Jill Houghton

Jill was appointed as a non-executive director in May 2018.  She is currently a registered nurse and has worked as a midwife and health visitor. Jill has had experience in all sectors of healthcare, clinically and managerially within primary and secondary care.  As a board member she has been responsible for patient services, quality, medicines optimisation and children, young people and maternity commissioning. Jill was most recently Chief Nurse for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough CCG and is now a Maternity Clinical Lead within the national Maternal and Neonatal Health Safety Collaborative. 

 David Moore

David Moore

David was appointed as a non-executive director of the trust in August 2018 following six years on the board of Milton Keynes University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.  He spent most of his career in banking with Citibank in a variety of roles, for the most part working internationally. He has significant board experience not only in the private sector but also as a Public Member of Network Rail and as a Lay Member of the Council and Treasurer of the University of Leicester. David is currently a Trustee of the Leicester Students’ Union and also sits on the University’s Investment Committee. He lives in Daventry.


Professor G. Andre Ng

André was appointed as a non-executive director in December 2021. He is a consultant cardiologist and electrophysiologist based at Leicester with specialist interest in heart rhythm management. He is a clinical academic and is currently Head of Department of Cardiovascular Sciences at the University of Leicester, with research interests in sudden cardiac death and atrial fibrillation. He is Vice President (Education & Research) of the British Cardiovascular Society and recently appointed as Deputy Chair of the East Midlands Cardiac Network as well as clinical pathway lead for heart rhythm.


Elena Lokteva

Elena’s executive career was in the private equity. Focusing on investments in complex, turnaround situations she managed international teams handling acquisitions and exits across Europe and the Middle East and led restructuring of business in Russia and Finland.
Elena has more than twenty years of board level experience in executive, and non-executive capacities. Her current NED portfolio includes another two organisations in healthcare sector - North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust and St Andrews Healthcare. Elena is a qualified accountant and a Fellow at the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants

Denise Kirkham

Denise joined the NGH Board in February 2020. As an Executive Resourcing and OD professional, Denise is highly experienced at working with Boards and Executive teams in an advisory and developmental capacity. Qualified to Level A and B in Occupational Testing, Myers Briggs and ILM 7 Executive coaching studies, Denise has held posts at Director level across sectors. Throughout her consultancy career, Denise has led and delivered on executive and NED recruitment, major Culture Change projects, organisational structure reviews and Executive coaching. Through her earlier career in the private sector, Denise developed strong business development and commercial skills, and a clear understanding of Customer Focus.

Executive directors 

Heidi Smoult

Heidi Smoult, Hospital CEO

Heidi joined NGH as Hospital Chief Executive in August 2021. Prior to this, Heidi was at the Care Quality Commission (CQC) where she held the role of Deputy Chief Inspector for seven years.

Heidi began her career as a Midwife and has worked in a number of operational roles in NHS Trusts, before leading work at a regional and national level in the CQC.

Hemant Nemade

Hemant Nemade , Medical Director

Biography coming soon.

Chief Operating Officer Palmer Winstanley

Palmer Winstanley, Chief Operating Officer

In February 2022 Palmer was appointed as Chief Operating Officer for Northampton General Hospital. Prior to this, he was the Site Executive Director of Operations at Kings College Hospital. He is passionate about empowering our leaders and enabling clinically led change for the benefit of patients across Northamptonshire.

Palmer was initially an Army Officer in the Infantry for just over 9 years serving around the world on operational deployments in Kosovo and Afghanistan. His roles included commanding troops on the front line, Intelligence work, communications, strategic NATO work and training recruits. Since leaving, he joined the NHS and worked in Norfolk, Hertfordshire and London working across all areas of Acute Hospitals before joining us in Northampton.


 Debbie Shanahan

Debbie Shanahan, Director of Nursing, Midwifery and Patient Services (Interim)

I am proud to have been a nurse for over 30 years, much of which has been based at Northampton General Hospital.  My experience has been in a variety of settings and includes Surgical Nursing, Gynaecology, Head and Neck, Maternity and setting up a Nurse led one stop Pre-Operative Assessment Service.

I have the privilege to lead a fantastic team and to provide senior nursing leadership ensuring delivery of high care standards care and patient experience. I’m responsible for the strategic direction and overall provision of the management of nursing services. I am a passionate nurse who has been a part of a senior team in the achievement of ‘Pathway to Excellence®’ designation and I want to empower nursing to ensure best possible patient care.

Group Directors

Paula Acting Chief People Officer

Paula Kirkpatrick, Chief People Officer

Paula joined Kettering General Hospital in 2019 after a career in HR spanning both public and private sectors, latterly including 15 years in policing where she was half of a job share partnership working in a number of senior roles.  Whilst working for Cambridgeshire Constabulary Paula was part of the HR leadership team that developed a collaborated HR service across Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire police forces.  Initially joining KGH as Deputy Director HR and OD in September 2019, Paula was appointed as Director HR and OD in June 2020 and Acting Chief People Officer in July 2022.

Paula’s areas of interest include health and wellbeing and equality, diversity and inclusion.  She believes leadership is about supporting teams and individuals to be the best they can be: by ensuring people are healthy and well in the broadest sense; are able to be themselves in the workplace, bringing all their skills and expertise to their role; and are supported and developed to reach their potential.

On 1st September 2022 Paula was appointed as Group Chief People Officer.


Andy Callow, Group Chief Digital Information Officer

Andy was appointed as Group Chief Digital Information Officer across both Northampton General Hospital and Kettering General Hospital in December 2020. He has responsibility for delivery of the digital strategy across both hospitals. For Andy, digital is not a rebadged IT but about a different way of working and across the Group he is striving to apply the culture, processes, business models and technologies of the internet era to respond to people’s raised expectations.

Andy was previously the Chief Digital Information Officer at Kettering Hospital and brings a wealth of digital experience to the role from a career spanning the public and private sector. Andy was previously Programme Director for the innovative NHS App at NHS Digital and took the app from inception to availability in the app stores in a little over 12 months. Prior to that he was the Head of Technology Delivery for the national NHS website NHS.UK, which receives c40m visits each month.


Jon Evans

Jon Evans, Group Chief Finance Officer

Jon joined Kettering and Northampton General Hospitals in June 2021 as Group Chief Finance Officer.

Previously, Jon was Director of Finance at Oxford University Hospitals and prior to that worked in various senior finance roles at Imperial College Healthcare and UCLH in London, having started his career in the NHS on the national graduate training scheme.

Jon is a qualified chartered management accountant and has an MBA from the Alliance Manchester Business School. He is an active member of the HFMA, having been part of various committees and regional branches throughout his career.


Karen Spellman, Interim Group Director of Integration and Partnerships

Karen has worked for the NHS for 25 years and has experience in strategic planning, business development, transformation, commissioning and contracting. Karen has worked in a variety of posts in planning, performance and strategy within the acute sector as well as roles in system transformation and leadership roles. As Director of Strategy and Partnerships, she is responsible for working with our partners, staff and patients to lead the strategic planning, transformation and development of the Trust. This also includes developing partnerships across the system to deliver integrated care.


Rebecca Taylor, Group Executive Director of Transformation and Quality Improvement

 Stuart Finn 1

Stuart Finn, Group Director of Estates and Facilities

Stuart's career began in electrical engineering. He has worked in both technical and senior management roles in several industries including airports, automotive manufacturing, semi-conductor manufacturing and facilities management. He joined NGH in December 2006 and prior to his current role he was the Head of Estates and Deputy Director of Facilities.Stuart has responsibility for both hard and soft services facilities management as well as our procurement and sterile services departments. 



Bola Agboola, Director of Finance

Bola started her career in 1997 with PwC and later with KPMG before joining the NHS in 2010. Her career spans audit, consultancy as well as general finance. Since joining the NHS, she has worked across a number of organisations in the acute sector. She joined NGH in 2016 as Deputy Director of Finance and was appointed as interim Director of Finance in December 2020. She is a fellow of the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants (ACCA) and holds a BSc in Accounting and an MBA from Cranfield University.


Dan Howard, Digital Director


Tracey Robson

Tracey Robson, Director of Human Resources


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