Sir Mark Hedley, Chair of the NYAS Board

Sir Mark Hedley practiced as a barrister for many years in Liverpool. He was appointed a full-time Circuit Judge in 1992 and from 1997 to 2002 was responsible for judicial training in family law. As a High Court Judge, 2002- 2013, he presided over many cases which attracted media reporting and comment. He also had management responsibility for other judges both in Wales and then in Greater London. Sir Mark has now officially retired.

Sir Mark was recently appointed to the board (Dec 2020) and said “I am looking forward to joining NYAS as the chair of its board of trustees, having supported the charity. NYAS is highly regarded as a leading children’s rights-based charity”


Annesley Wright, Honorary Treasurer of the Board

Annesley is the retired managing director of a large international company who has experience in finance, accountancy, governance and compliance.

In recent years he has been heavily involved in the Charity and Not for Profit sectors volunteering as a Trustee/Non-Executive Director. The majority of his roles centre on the support of disadvantaged youth in Wales and England. He brings all his skills and experience to his advisory role as a Trustee and Non-Executive Director at NYAS.

He says, “I am passionate about developing opportunities for disadvantaged young people and believe NYAS is uniquely positioned to achieve this for those who have no-one to fight their corner.”


Judith Timms OBE

Judith is the founder and first Chief Executive Officer of NYAS and is Vice President of the Family Mediators Association and policy consultant to NAGALRO – the Professional Association for Children’s Guardians, Family Court Advisers and Independent Social Workers.

She is a trained family mediator and a former Chair of the British Association of Social Workers with many years’ experience as a family and childcare social worker and children’s guardian. She has also served as a Non-Executive Director on both regional and area Health Authorities.

“I am deeply committed to the principles of children’s rights and welfare” said Judith. “For happy, healthy and secure children, the rights to be heard and to be represented are insurance policies they will hopefully never need to use, but for the many thousands of vulnerable children who may be disadvantaged, alone, exploited, abused, neglected, or discriminated against, these rights may be their only hope, with effective independent advocacy the only chance of making their voice heard.”


Martyn Best

Martyn is managing director of digital dictation transcription and secretarial service, Document Direct.
He began his career as a chartered accountant and spent nine years in corporate finance with Ernst & Young which propelled him into the business world. An entrepreneur, he developed a range of diverse businesses and currently heads up the UK’s leading digital transcription agency.
He is also an Associate Director of Tranmere Rovers Football Club, and a trustee of the Royal Court Theatre.

Martyn has been an active supporter of NYAS for several years, as a Trustee and as a fundraising ambassador. He said: “As a father, you hope that all children are supported and cared for during their formative years. Sadly this is not the case for thousands of children across the UK.

“NYAS provides vital support to children and young people when they are at their most desperate. NYAS needs all of our support to enable it to continue to play such a vital role in the lives of so many young people.”


Roy Jones MBE

Recently retired after 46 years with Scottish Power as Community Manager North West England and North Wales.

Roy is actively involved with a number of charities and was awarded an MBE for services to young people in Wales in the 2011 New Year’s Honours list and was winner of the BITC Business Volunteer of the Year in 2015.

“I got involved with NYAS as supporting young people making the transition from education to employment, and more importantly when they require a voice and support, is important to me,” he said.
“I have seen how NYAS has benefited many young people and the truly positive impact it has had on their lives and the transformational and supportive direction it can provide.”

Martha Cover

Martha Cover is a barrister specialising in child protection law and care proceedings. She is the joint head of Coram Chambers and a former chair of the Association of Lawyers for Children. She represents children, young people and their families in court, and supports NYAS in ensuring that the voice of the child is heard by local authorities, judges and policy makers.

Kelly Harris MSc

Kelly is a qualified youth worker with almost 20 years experience of working with young people from diverse backgrounds, and is currently working for Brook – a sexual health, relationships and well-being charity for young people under 25 – as the Business Development and Participation Lead, steering their expansion across Wales.

Kelly has extensive knowledge of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, and during her employment with Funky Dragon; the Children and Young People’s Assembly for Wales, contributed to the first NGO report written by young people as part of the reporting process to the Committee on the Rights of the Child. Kelly also helped the Welsh Parliament to establish its Youth Engagement service, set up the Welsh Youth Parliament and contributed to lowering the voting age to 16 in Wales.

“I am deeply passionate and committed to ensuring that young people are given the opportunity to have a say in decisions being made about them, and I am delighted to be a Trustee with NYAS to ensure that care experienced young people are afford the opportunity and support as they need it” said Kelly.