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Independent Advisory Group

Our Independent Advisory Group are a strategic partner to the Executive team, bringing added independent lay insight, and overview regarding delivery of the annual strategic workplan, and contributing to safeguarding the probity and transparency of Local Healthwatch.

Our Independent Advisory Group Members

Ian Dewar

Ian Dewar has enjoyed almost thirty years in Public Relations, Marketing and Business Management. Post-RAF career he entered the world of publishing working in New York, Boston and here in the United Kingdom. With British Rail he gained first hand experience in sales, marketing and public relations before becoming that company’s first Commercial Officer. As a PR and Marketing consultant he provided services to a blue chip client base at home and abroad. Ian was Vice Chairman of the South West Durham Health Authority for five years and has maintained an active interest in health related matters since. Now retired he describes himself as a neurotic author with a wife and several ailing cats.

Carol Dyas

Carol has over 35 years’ experience in Primary Care. Carol has volunteered with Healthwatch East Riding of Yorkshire for a number of years before taking up her new role on the Independent Advisory Group. She enjoys reading, learning new languages, aqua aerobics and walking.  

Sally Burns

Sally is a highly Experienced Senior Manager with over 35 years strategic and operational workplace experience managing a broad range of local government services delivered in Communities. Extensive experience in financial, and people management and Partnership Working. Track record of effective strategy/ policy development and implementation. Outcome-focused approach, with a proven ability to deliver service improvements in a climate of transformation and reducing resources. Project manager with experience of leading complex multi organisational partnership programmes, Effective motivator and able to work with teams to achieve goals within budget and to tight deadlines.

Barbara Lappin

30 years housing management experience working nationally for a housing association that provided housing, care and support to people over 55’s. After a long career in housing and social care it’s so rewarding to have an opportunity to work and contribute to a great team. As a volunteer I feel I have the opportunity to make a difference by helping people have their say in health and social care. I like to listen to peoples experiences, needs and preferences and help them to understand their options and make informed decisions.

Howard Lester

I volunteer to give back to my community and the share skills and knowledge I have developed over 46 years in healthcare. I enjoy talking with people, people of all ages and abilities have so much to share, this helps in the development of a user focused health and care system. Healthwatch is rewarding, interesting and sometimes challenging but never boring. It has opened doors for me to contribute in so many areas.


The Independent Advisory Group, in line with national guidance, is made up of the Healthwatch Chief Executive, the Healthwatch Delivery Manager, and independent members, who will be selected for their specific skills and experience, in the following areas:

  1. Patient and public engagement
  2. Marketing and communications
  3. Health and Social Care
  4. Volunteer management
  5. Strategic leadership

Core Responsibilities

With information provided by the Healthwatch East Riding of Yorkshire staff team, the Independent Advisory Group takes responsibility for:

  1. Developing strategic plans for Healthwatch East Ring and other projects developed under the HWERY initiative that are informed by the needs and experiences of East Riding residents.
  2. Reviewing plans for the delivery of Healthwatch East Riding
  3. Monitoring progress against Healthwatch East Riding delivery plans and advising on amendments to meet identified need
  4. Making recommendations to the management of Meeting New Horizons CIC regarding maintaining and safeguarding the independence, probity and transparency of Healthwatch East Riding of Yorkshire
  5. Championing the public and patient views


The Independent Advisory Group meets in person four times a year and the meetings are open to the public, who are welcome to ask pre-agreed questions. The role of these meetings is to set the strategic workplan for Healthwatch East Riding and to check the delivery against that workplan at key stages. 

The ISAB provides the overview, scrutiny and challenge to the plans and actions of the delivery team. Dates and venues of meetings are published in advance on our website.