England ambassadors

We have a number of Ambassadors based around England.

Find out more about the role or register your interest in becoming an ambassador here.

Current Ambassadors:

  • Neil - Architect, East Midlands
  • David - Architectural Technologist, North East
  • Emily - Architectural Assistant, North West
  • Darren - Architect, South East
  • Priya - Architect, East 
  • Abigail - Architect, North West
  • Alice - Architectural Assistant, South East
  • James - Architect, South West
  • Rosa - Architectural Assistant, Yorkshire
  • Charlotte - Architect, South East
  • Ray - Architectural Technologist, North West
  • Alison - Architect, North East
  • Simeon - Doctoral Researcher, West Midlands
  • Amy - Architectural Assistant, West Midlands
  • Mike - Architect, West Sussex

Neil Scroxton, ABS AmbassadorNeil Scroxton, Architect – East Midlands Ambassador

“Working with the ABS is an opportunity to give back to a community of people, friends and colleagues who give so much to me.  I love my job and as an Architect and employer. The interactions I have with people and the positive energy that is created throughout our industry makes each day enjoyable…  Ok, makes most days enjoyable…  But if I were to lose that, if illness or injury were to take the tools of my trade away and make it impossible to work, it would break my heart.  Beyond that, the fiscal burden would just be salt in the wound. 

Being able to offer support during such difficult time helps to lighten the load and frees the mind of worry and that is why I jumped at the chance to spread the good word…  Oh, and they wanted to call me an Ambassador which made me feel very important, and kind of swung it for me really!”

David Adams, ABS AmbassadorDavid Adams, Architectural Technologist – North East Ambassador

“As an Ambassador I plan to engage with members of the profession and focus on growth of interest in the Northumberland and North East region. I aim to bring in donations to the Society and promote the support it can offer to the professions members or their families in times of need.

I first became aware of the existence of the Society through my activities with the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists.  One of our Committee members, the late Marjorie Smith, was very involved as a trustee for the charity and represented our institute for many years. Her enthusiasm has encouraged me to become more involved as a volunteer for ABS.”

 Emily Green, Architectural Assistant - North West Ambassador

"I am an architectural assistant based in the North West, studying for my part 3 and hoping to qualify soon, but as everyone knows, life gets in the way sometimes!  I decided to get involved with the ABS after hearing about how they helped a friend, I wasn't aware of the support they can provide or the breadth of professions they can reach out to, but when I did, I couldn't not get involved.
I myself have struggled in the last few years; with being unable to work due to illness, which in turn implicates you financially, redundancy and then the aftermath of mental health struggles coming to terms with what had happened.  I feel really passionate about helping others know that they can have confidence in the fact that they are not alone, there is help out there and they do not need to suffer in silence. 
I would love to be able to help others by spreading the word of the architects benevolent society and give back to the profession I enjoy so much.  It is so so important that people know there is always help, there is always someone to talk to or listen and all they need to do is ask!"

Darren Bray, Architect - South East Ambassador

"The main motivation for becoming involved in ABS, has been due to the amazing support they have given to some of the students that I have taught recently, who have been struggle with different aspects of mental health.

I believe, those of us, who are in a position, to give back to the profession, should see it as our duty, to help and assist the next generation, therefore I see ABS, in playing a significant part of the future of the architectural profession."

 Priya Aiyer, Architect – East Ambassador

“Having used the ABS’s services myself to help battle my mental health demons, I have found it incredibly useful and life-changing and want to be able to give something back so that others are aware of what they do. Being an ambassador means a great deal as I realise there is an issue and stigma within the architecture and wider construction industry, with many either not being brave enough to speak about mental health or not getting the support quick enough.

I am pleased to be a Mental Health First Aider in England and I am also a Wellbeing Ambassador at my company, Mace Ltd. I feel that my role as an ABS ambassador ties in with these, and it’s helped to connect with like-minded people who feel that everyone deserves to have a voice. I have begun to spread the word about ABS and I certainly will continue to do so.”

Abigail Patel, Architect - North West Ambassador

"As a student of architecture it is an incredible honour to be asked to be an ambassador for the Architects Benevolent Society and help raise awareness within the architectural profession about the brilliant work that the charity does for people who need their help most.

It’s safe to say that the work ABS do is invaluable for students, graduates, professions- or anyone working within the architectural industry. I wish I had known about the charity during my time studying my undergraduate, when my struggles with anxiety were at their worst. Luckily I have incredible family and friends who helped me through very difficult times, but now I want to be able to give something back and help those who might be in a similar situation and use my own experiences to support others.

Currently, I am studying my MArch (Masters of Architecture) at The Manchester School of Architecture, as well as being student representative on the RIBA North West Regional Council and RIBA National Council. I am passionate about supporting others and advocating for equality, diversity and inclusion in everything I do and I hope that I can bring this into my role within the ABS and help to continue their amazing work!"

Alice Dammery, Architectural Assistant - South East Ambassador
"It was wonderful to be asked to be an ambassador for The Architects Benevolent Society. They help raise awareness and promote positive mental health and well-being within the architecture profession and at universities. 
Tom, Mark, Katie and everyone are really enthusiastic and have created a wonderful community of ABS ambassadors from all over the UK. It was great to be invited to one of their training sessions at Portland Place where we enjoyed insightful discussions with like-mined people - many of whom I still keep in touch with at various events throughout the year! 
I first heard about The Architects Benevolent Society in 2017 as an MArch, final year student at The University of Nottingham. Since then, I have kept in touch and now work as a Part 2 Architectural Assistant for Purcell in the South." 

James Brown, Architect - South West Ambassador

"I’m a chartered architect with a small studio based in North Somerset, with links to several academic institutions and organisations across the West Country. I’ve experienced and witnessed some of the mental health issues that are prolific in our industry, leading me to challenge why a nation of creative, problem solving professionals are not applying the same rigour in supporting our own wellbeing, as we do with our projects!

After completing the educational long-haul, and having worked at all scales of architectural practice, a recurring theme throughout is that simply too many people are suffering from the poor mental health epidemic and this must change.

The ABS, along with their partnership with Anxiety UK, is invaluably supporting both our professional and student cohorts with a whole range of measures. Being an ambassador empowers me to share awareness of the support available, the changing attitudes towards mental health, and I’m looking forward to stimulating positive, open conversations with students, academic and professionals alike."

Rosa Turner

Rosa Turner-Wood, Architectual Assistant - Yorkshire Ambassador
"I first gained knowledge of the Architects Benevolent Society when they hosted an event at the Sheffield School of Architecture, in collaboration with the RIBA, that sought to raise awareness of mental wellbeing among architecture students. Since this event I have used their services to deal with my own anxiety and have been incredibly impressed with the support ABS staff offer, and the pace in which I was offered appropriate mental health provision. I believe the intensity of the profession often neglects the mental health of its practitioners – without the work of ABS I know many within the profession would be suffering.
As an ambassador I hope to further promote the work of the charity, from its mental health support, through to their financial advice and assistance. I am truly excited to work in partnership with the ABS in the future!"  

Charlotte Goodman-Simpson, Architect - South East Ambassador

"I am a practicing Architect working for an international practice in Hampshire and I also lecture part-time in Professional Practice for the University of Portsmouth.

Being an Ambassador for the Architect’s Benevolent Society and raising awareness for them is an invaluable alliance that helps support my colleagues in practice and my students at the university, as well as others within the wider architectural industry.

I first got involved with ABS when both my colleagues in practice and my students were affected in their personal lives and the work place, with mental health or other issues, and I felt like I could do more to assist.  I have of course felt the pressures of the business, and life, and this only allows me to relate better to those I want to help.  I have a passion for mentoring and believe that education and awareness is the principle way to break stigma.

It is important to know that ABS is not limited to mental health and their assistance and knowledge goes much further.  Their work with Anxiety UK however proves an incredible resource. I am very excited to see collaboration and change."

Ray Ockenden, Architectural Technologist - North West Amassador

"I am honored to be an Ambassador to the ABS, it is my opportunity to be able to give back to my profession and others that have experienced mental health problems and face/faced hardship in there lives.

I am a Chartered Architectural Technologist, based in the North West, at Mott Macdonald a worldwide, multidisciplinary company. I am also the current NW aspirATion group chair and work closely with CIAT.

The aspirATion group, part of the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists, is an initiative aim at the younger generation (students and recent graduates) of upcoming AT professionals. I am proud that ABS offer support to students on what can be a highly stressful program and I can ensure the North West Region of aspirATion will do the part to raise awareness and educate on ABS and what they offer.

I myself suffered from the effects of mental illness and unfortunately at the time, did not know anything about ABS. As soon as I heard about the charity I knew I could not say no to representing them. There are so many people that keep their head down about suffering with a problem and don’t want to speak up and get help. I want to be able to help people have the confidence and the chance to become known and get the support they need.

The construction industry can be a very high pressure/stressful environment to be in and companies often forget the person behind the screen, creating the work and do not think about (or see) what is happening with the person and their life and wellbeing.

I am looking forward to working with ABS and helping spread the message that help is there and all you need to do is ask."

Alison Thornton-Sykes, Architect - North East Ambassador

"I am delighted to become an Ambassador for ABS. Having worked as an architect for 27 years I have known of ABS for some time but following an ABS presentation at a local RIBA health and wellbeing event I have only recently discovered the extent of support they provide. This inspired me to become an Ambassador and help to raise awareness in the North East region of the amazing work done by the Society.

I am passionate about the mental health support ABS provides, enabling people to gain access to therapy during difficult times. Having someone to turn to, who can provide advice, through often short periods of difficulties can facilitate returning to work and allow careers to continue and flourish. ABS provide such support and  I am keen to help spread their message.

As Principal Architect at JDDK Architects I have worked on many community projects for a range of charitable organisations who are driven to change people’s lives for the better. It is humbling to work with these people in such settings and by becoming an ABS Ambassador I hope to be able to make a contribution to such change."

Simeon Shtebunaev, Doctoral Researcher - West Midlands Ambassador

"I first got involved with the Society regarding the work that they were piloting to raise awareness about mental health and develop a support network. The dedication of the team, their expertise and genuine passion to better the lives of others struck me as exceptional and motivated me to become more engaged.

The collaboration with Anxiety UK that the Society has developed is an incredible resource to all the architectural community. Their commitment to interdisciplinary support and ambitions to help as many people as possible, including early career professionals, are admirable.
I am currently a Doctoral Researcher in Urban Planning at Birmingham City University, Student Representative on the RIBA National Council and co-Vice-President of the RIBA for Students and Associates. I am passionate to support young people in any stage of their development and to signpost them to organisations such as the Society that can help their development."

Amy Francis-Smith, Architectural Assistant - West Midlands Ambassador 

"I became involved with the ABS to help spread the message of their good work, my own personal experience of battling sudden extreme ill health, where I was forced to take time off studying/working for several years, helps me to empathise with others facing similar hardship. 
I had heard about the ABS some years ago, but assumed it was only for fully qualified architects; it was only later did I realise it was open to students and other professionals as well and that there could have been some financial and mental health support available to me. 
Through articles, guest blogs, social media and running events, I hope to reduce the stigma of mental illness in the industry and avoid others struggling.
I am a Part II Architectural Assistant, the Vice-President of the Birmingham Architectural Association, Part 3 candidate at BCU, named as one of Birmingham Live’s 30 under 30 2019 and passionate advocate for Inclusive Design/Accessible Housing. 
My work and research focuses on providing decent accommodations across the Built Environment for those with a spectrum of disabilities and mental health issues. I sit on Habinteg's (an accessible housing association) advisory board to lobby government to improve the Building Regulations, was featured by them as part of International Day of Persons with Disabilities and helped run a pilot course at The Bartlett with DisOrdinary Architecture bringing blind and visually impaired students into architectural education."


Mike McEvoy, Architect - West Sussex Ambassador

"I’m really glad to be helping the dedicated team at ABS as an ambassador.  I’ve been 50 years in the business, starting off in practice and later on as an academic, so I’m well acquainted with the stresses and strains that come with the ups and downs of construction.  It doesn’t get any easier though and current problems with debt added to the other pressures are very worrying particularly for the current generation of students, an area of interest to me.  ABS is doing a great job at providing help for individuals to get by in an increasingly impersonal world.  I’m covering an area of West Sussex where I’m hoping to both highlight the issues and raise the profile of the charity."


  • Redundancy Support

    If in the current climate you are facing redundancy please see here for more information, including how the ABS can help you.
  • Here when you need us

    Click here for housing advice, financial assistance, mental health support or legal guidance. Architects Benevolent Society are here to help!
  • ABS Covid-19 Response

    Architects Benevolent Society would like to assure those in the wider architectural community that we are here to help and continue to offer our support services.