Team and Clinical Leads 


Clare Hillitt

CN Manager for Maternity and Perinatal Mental Health

Clare was appointed as a Clinical Network Manager in April 2013. From April 2014 Clare worked to provide leadership and management to the Children and Young People's Mental Health and Maternity Clinical Networks to drive improvements in the outcomes and experiences of women, children and their families. This included support to services implementing the recommendations of ‘Future in Mind’ 2015, the 5 Year Forward View for Mental Health and Better Births 2016. From October 2020 Clare will focus her leadership and management to the Maternity and Perinatal Mental Health Networks supporting services in the implementation of the NHS Long Term Plan. Clare joined the NHS in 1981 and worked in Directorate Manager roles for 26 years in Trusts in Nuneaton, Birmingham and Sheffield. This included seven years at Birmingham Children’s Hospital managing a range of medical and surgical specialties as well as critical care and radiology and laboratory services. Clare’s work in Sheffield in Plastic Surgery and Burn services included managing the transfer of paediatric burn services to Sheffield Children’s NHSFT, supporting the establishment and development of the North of England Burn Network and the development of the Sheffield Hand Centre, a fully integrated orthopaedic and plastic surgery hand unit. In 2009, Clare joined the North Trent Network of Cardiac Care as Network Director providing strategic leadership to the Cardiac Network and to the implementation of the National Stroke Strategy including the development of North Trent Stroke Services. Clare is based at our Oak House office in Rotherham.


Dr Sarah Winfield

CN Clinical Lead for Maternity

Consultant Obstetrician with an interest in Maternal Medicine, Leeds Teaching Hospital NHS Trust.

Sarah works as a Consultant Obstetrician and is based at Leeds General Infirmary. She has a special interest in maternal medicine and runs the Obstetric Cardiac and Renal Service in this tertiary referral centre. Sarah also works with the Diabetes team and is part of the twice weekly Diabetic Antenatal Clinic at St. James’s University Hospital. She sees high risk obstetric patients for pre-pregnancy counselling and participates in the consultant on-call rota at LTHT.

Sarah is the Yorkshire and Humber Senate lead for the NHS England ‘Complex Obstetrics’ Clinical Reference Group (a merger of the previous Fetal Medicine CRG and Specialised Maternity Services CRG), which has been chosen by NHSE as the vanguard for new ‘Collaborative Commissioning’. This will be an interesting challenge, and Sarah is keen to link this with her SCN role to optimise what can be achieved to improve maternity services for women and their families in Yorkshire and Humber.

Sarah comes from Newcastle upon Tyne and completed a degree in Physiology at Leeds University before going to Medical School at Newcastle University, from where she qualified in 1998. She then completed her Obstetric training in the Northern Deanery and was appointed as a Consultant Obstetrician at The James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough in 2007, where she became the Maternal Medicine Lead in this Trust. When the opportunity arose to come back to Leeds to work, after having enjoyed living in Yorkshire while at University, Sarah was appointed as a Consultant at LGI and has been in post since January 2011.

When Sarah is not at work, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two daughters. 


Katy Morley

Clinical Advisor, Perinatal Mental Health

Katy is a Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Nurse and Team Manager with the Perinatal Mental Health (PMH) Liaison Team, Humber Teaching NHS Foundation Trust, which provides a service to women and families living in the Hull, East Yorkshire, North and North East Lincolnshire area. Katy qualified as a mental health nurse in 2002; she has extensive experience working with unwell, vulnerable and at risk patients including those that attend A&E in crisis and are cared for within an inpatient setting. Katy accepted a lead role in the development and set up of the perinatal mental health liaison team in 2010, at the time one of the few PMH teams in the country. Katy’s role was pivotal in an ambitious programme of expansion of services in the Hull, East Yorkshire, North and North East Lincolnshire area following investment from NHS England community service development fund. Katy chairs the Yorkshire and Humber (Y&H) PMH Network Steering Group and Learning Collaborative and represents Y&H on National PMH groups. Katy has been involved in regional and national conferences and is a contributing author to the well-known book “Another Twinkle in the Eye” a key text about experiencing perinatal mental illness from a patient’s viewpoint.


Hilary Farrow

Quality Improvement Manager

Hilary’s role involves collaborative working with commissioners, providers, local maternity systems and other key stakeholders in the development of maternity services and in alignment with the Maternity Transformation Programme. Her aspiration is to support colleagues to commission and provide a high-quality maternity service for the women, families and the staff providing maternity care in Yorkshire & the Humber. Hilary has previously worked in maternity services at York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust as a midwife and has experience in all areas of midwifery practice. Her previous role as a Maternity Risk Manager and Supervisor of Midwives involved quality assurance, clinical governance, clinical audit and peer reviews. Her passion for improving services has supported her role as Quality Improvement Manager for the Y&H Maternity Clinical Network and is the Y&H Maternity Safety Lead. She has provided expertise and leadership to develop a Y&H Maternity Dashboard, Y&H Stillbirth and Bereavement Care Recommendations as well as supporting the work programme areas and safer maternity care projects. Her national involvement includes being a member of the working groups for Saving Babies’ Lives Care Bundle version 1, ATAIN programme and has presented regionally and nationally on the safety agenda. Hilary has experience of working as a Senior LMS Midwife leading on safety, neonatal care and provided a strategic link for the Yorkshire Ambulance Service. She has also provided support for the North Region Maternity Team as a safety lead. Hilary is based at our Alpha Court office in York.


Anna Downward-Fletcher

Quality Improvement Manager - PMH

Anna leads on the development and delivery of the clinical networks perinatal mental health work programme. The programme aims to support the delivery of quality improvements and improve the experience and outcomes for women, infants and families. Previously Anna was a Quality Improvement Lead for Maternity. Prior to joining the Clinical Networks in 2014, Anna worked in Human Resources and has undertaken a number of improvement projects and project management roles within the NHS. Anna led on achieving NHS Litigation Authority Standards at an acute provider trust and worked in maternity services working alongside obstetricians, midwives and managers to achieve the Clinical Negligence Scheme for Trusts (CNST) Maternity Clinical Risk Management Standards. Anna is based at our Oak House office in Rotherham.


Elizabeth Audsley

Quality Improvement Lead - Maternity

Lizzy was appointed as Quality Improvement Lead in October 2018 and is supporting the delivery of the Better Births Maternity priorities. Lizzy is leading on the Maternity Enhanced and Critical Care programme for the Clinical Network, as well as aspects of the Safer Maternity Care agenda, supporting providers and stakeholders to improve the quality and outcomes for women and their families. Lizzy has worked in a number of roles within NHS England since 2013; working within the National Maternity Transformation Programme Team (established as a result of the Better Births Review) as well as the Medical Directorate in the South West Region for the Performers List and Controlled Drugs Team, working collaboratively with professional regulatory bodies and across different directorates and regional boundaries to support service improvement. Lizzy is based at our Alpha Court office in York.


Mrs Talitha Grandison

Quality Improvement Lead

Quality Improvement Lead - Maternity Talitha was appointed as Quality Improvement Lead in January 2021 and is supporting the delivery of the Better Births Maternity priorities. Talitha is leading on the Saving Babies Lives and Stillbirth programmes for the Clinical Network, supporting providers and stakeholders to improve the quality and outcomes for women and their families. Talitha has worked in the maternity services across the Yorkshire and Humber region as a Midwife since 2007 and has experience of working at LMS level, initially supporting providers to implement the Preventing Cerebral Palsy in Preterm Birth (PReCePT) programme and expanding her role into improving neonatal outcomes by leading on Preterm Birth and ATAIN workstreams. Talitha is based at our Alpha Court office in York.


Fiona McCulla

Admin Support Officer

Fiona joined NHS England in 2017 as a Temp, working as PA to a Medical Director. Her current role sees her providing a wide range of administrative support to colleagues across the Y&H Maternity and Children & Young People’s Mental Health Clinical Networks. Fiona’s earlier career was spent in the Civil Service where she worked for more than 30 years, beginning as a front line Clerk in Benefit Offices and Jobcentres, helping unemployed people to claim benefits and find jobs or training. She moved to work in Sheffield in 1997 at the head office of the then Department for Education and Employment, changing direction entirely and helping to edit, proof read and publish a range of respected careers publications. Later roles were focused on policy development for Government schemes such as the EMA scheme (Education Maintenance Allowance) and the Connexions Card, which were aimed at encouraging young people to remain in education, both of which involved working with the private sector company Capita. Before taking voluntary redundancy from DfE in 2016, Fiona was a Senior Assurance officer working in the Academies programme, conducting audits and providing financial assurance over the expenditure of Academy funding. During the Covid 19 crisis of 2020, Fiona spent several months providing additional support to the Digital Transformation Director for the North East and Yorkshire, building on the valuable skills and experience gained in her NHS career to date.



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