Trade Union Committee

The Committee responsible for the RCN’s trade union function

Lorrae Allford Trade Union Committee

Lorrae Allford (Chair)

Member for South West
January 2018 - December 2019

Lorrae, better known as Lors, began her nurse training in 1976. She is currently employed as an Emergency Nurse Practitioner at the Royal United Hospital NHS Foundation Trust Bath. She is also an accredited RCN Steward and Health and Safety Representative, supporting members. Lors was a volunteer as a ‘Games Maker’ at the 2012 Olympic Games and also currently volunteers for Festival Medical Services as the Hospital Manager at events such as Glastonbury helping to raise money for various charities. She was elected to RCN Council in 2009 and was Vice Chair from 2014 till 2017.

Tracey Budding Trade Union Committee

Tracey Budding (Vice-Chair)

Member for West Midlands
January 2018 - December 2019

Tracey has worked on the NHS frontline for over 35 years, from Health Care Assistant to a Modern Matron. Her current nursing specialism is Neonatal Intensive Care. She is the South Birmingham Branch Chair. Tracey has held many roles within and across the organisation since attending her first congress in 2002, from chairing Boards to National Committees. Playing an active role as a member of RCN Council in developing and changing the governance structures which have affected members at a local regional and national arena. Locally she is the lead RCN Steward & Safety Representative and interim Staff-Side Chair.

Fiona Devlin

Member for Northern Ireland
January 2018 - December 2021

Fiona qualified as a Registered General Nurse in 1989. Her main area of expertise lies in adult community nursing but she has held posts at staff nurse, sister / team leader and manager level in both acute and community settings, as well as in the independent sector. She worked as a professional and practice development nurse within the Northern Health & Social Care Trust before secondment as an accredited representative within the Trust. Fiona is an RCN Steward and an active member within her local Branch. From 2013 - 2017 Fiona was an RCN Council member and she has been the lead for the RCN Northern Ireland Community Nursing Network since 2013. Fiona is Chair of the RCN Northern Ireland Board.

Diane Coleman Trade Union Committee

Diane Coleman

Member for Scotland
January 2018 - December 2019

Diane qualified in 1984 as a Sick Children and Adult Nurse before completing Midwife and District Nurse training. She spent five years out of direct clinical practice working on the quality of care in a clinical governance team, completing a BSc in Clinical Governance. Diane completed the PGDip in Advanced Practice and is an independent prescriber. She is now a District Nurse in a remote rural practice leading a team of community nurses. She enjoys the variety the post brings and the freedom to make decisions and be accountable for her choices in patient care.

Gaynor Jones Trade Union Committee

Gaynor Jones MBE

Member for Wales
January 2018 - December 2019

Gaynor has been a registered nurse for over 37 years. Gaynor is an accredited RCN Steward, and primarily works as the lead Steward within the Cwm Taf Health Board. She also works part-time as a senior staff nurse in the emergency department at the Prince Charles Hospital in Merthyr Tydfil. Gaynor is Chair of the RCN Welsh Board and the Welsh Government appointed Independent Member on her University Health Board representing staff-side. Gaynor was awarded the MBE in the 2018 Queen's Birthday Honours for services to the nursing profession in Wales.

Carol Evans Trade Union Committee

Carol Evans

Member for Eastern
January 2018 - December 2021 

Carol is currently working in Primary Care as a Primary Mental Health Practitioner in Cambridgeshire. She works as a staff-side Chair at Cambridge and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust, where she is an RCN steward. 

Neil Thompson Trade Union Committee

Neil Thompson

Member for East Midlands
January 2018 - December 2021 

Neil has been attending RCN Nottingham Branch meetings since the early 1980’s, he became a Steward in 1986 and a Safety Rep in 1993 (he has been the East Midlands Rep on the UK Safety Representatives Committee since 2011). Within the Branch structure, Neil has served as Vice-Chair, Secretary, and Treasurer and has only just come off of the Executive Committee after serving the maximum 10 year term. From 1982 to 2009 Neil was a fill-time District Nurse and for a number of years linked that with staff-side Chair for a PCT, since 2009 Neil has been away from front line nursing and has worked as a staff-side Chair and lead RCN Steward / Safety Rep.

Karen Sanders Trade Union Committee

Karen Sanders

Member for London
January 2018 - December 2021 

Karen has over 35 years’ nursing experience. Prior to becoming a Senior Lecturer at London South Bank University in the Adult Nursing and Midwifery Studies Department, Karen specialised in Adult Intensive Care and Neurosciences nursing and held Management, Practice Development and Education roles. In her present role Karen works with post–registration nurses and pre-registration nursing students. Karen is an RCN Learning Rep and served for two terms as Chair of the UK Learning Representatives Committee from January 2015 to December 2018.

Michael Appleby Trade Union Committee 2018

Michael Appleby

Member for Northern
January 2018 - December 2021 

Michael presently works as a Nurse Teaching Fellow at County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust and before that worked as a community staff nurse within Community Health Services. He has worked within the National Health Services for over 32 years, starting as a HCA before qualifying as a nurse in 2002. He is very active within the RCN and is presently Chair of the Northern Board and Chair of his local Branch, Michael represents the Northern Region on the UK Stewards Committee and is presently acting as Vice-Chair.

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Mike Travis

Member for North West
January 2018 - December 2021
Liz Jeremiah Trade Union Committee

Liz Jeremiah

Member for South East
January 2018 - December 2019

Liz qualified in 1999 as an Adult Nurse, since then she has been working full-time at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust. Her clinical background is in Emergency Medicine and Critical Care. Although Liz has been a member of the RCN since she trained, in the past two years she has begun to take on more active roles – alongside her election to the Committee, she is also a work-place Steward and Branch Chair. Liz is passionate about staff well-being and is especially interested in combatting workplace bullying and harassment. She works closely with her Trust’s ‘Freedom to Speak Up’ guardian service.

Karen Pike Trade Union Committee

Karen Pike

Nursing Support Worker Member
January 2018 - December 2021 

Karen started her career working at Torbay General Hospital as a Nursing Auxiliary. In 2003 she started work in an acute surgical setting. Karen undertook her NVQ3 in 2007 and progressed through her band. Looking for a new challenge, she started her RCN Steward training in 2016, qualifying in 2017. Karen enjoyed attending the Continued Learning and Development days in the South West and it was here that she was encouraged to put herself forward for the Nursing Support Worker Member of the Trade Union Committee.

Clare Manley

Clare Manley

Student Member
April 2019 - December 2019

Clare is a third year Mental Health Nursing student at Sheffield Hallam University. Clare sits on the RCN Students Committee as an ex-officio member. As the student member of the Trade Union Committee she provides a voice for student nurses.

The Trade Union Committee works to ensure that the RCN develops as a modern progressive trade union making a positive difference to the working lives of nursing staff. The committee is accountable to RCN Council and makes decisions on its behalf on all the RCN’s trade union functions and activities.


The Trade Union Committee has 14 members: one member each from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and one from each of the nine English regions: East Midlands, Eastern, London, North West, Northern, South East, South West,  West Midlands, Yorkshire and the Humber. They are elected by members in their country or region.


The remaining two members are from the Student and Nursing Support Worker (Health Care Assistants and Assistant Practitioner) membership categories and are elected by the members of those groups.

You can find out more about the role and remit of the RCN Trade Union Committee by reading the Terms of Reference. 


Reports from recent committee meetings can be downloaded below.

October 2019


Report of meeting

June 2019


Report of meeting

March 2019


Report of meeting