About JIGSAW Thornbury

JIGSAW stands for Joining In, Growing Support, Awareness, and Wellbeing. We support families who have children and young people who are 0-25 years and have any additional needs or disability. This can be anything from learning needs such as dyslexia to complex disabilities or medical problems. Many children and young people who come have no diagnosis.​ Our staff and volunteers are passionate about working with families to empower them get the support they need. Our vision is that children and young people with additional needs or disabilities and their families are empowered to connect, fit in, and thrive as themselves.

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Who are we?

We are a friendly team of staff, trustees, and volunteers who have a wide range of skills and experiences. We work together to offer a range of services that support and empower the families we work with.
Looking after our team’s mental health and wellbeing is important to us here at JIGSAW. We are a Mindful Employer and have signed the charter for employers who are positive about mental health. We even have a registered therapy dog, Albus, who is in the office a few days a week and attends services for our families from time to time.
JIGSAW Thornbury is goverened by a strong board of trustees who act as a critical friend, offering a balance of support and challenge to enable us to deliver our charitable purpose with as much impact as possible. We review the skills on our board annually to make sure we’ve got the right mix of experience to set us up for long term success.

Why do we help?

JIGSAW Thornbury was set up in 2013 by Tor Goodman and a group of her friends. Tor was a paediatric nurse so had supported many families through difficult situations, but it was having 2 children with complex needs herself that led to the development of JIGSAW.

The group of friends recognised that there was a need locally for support for family’s like Tor’s. She found that having children with special educational needs and disabilities meant her life was quite different to what she expected and what many of her friends were experiencing.

‘It feels such a short time since I decided to set up a support group in a church hall for parents who were in a similar situation of having children with additional needs in 2013; that was really all I had planned, honest!  In my former life I had been a children’s nurse and cared for many children with additional needs and disabilities, so I thought I knew what it would be like when I became such a parent! How wrong I was! It can be a lonely rollercoaster ride with no option to get off! (A bit like setting up a charity really ?!)’

Tor Goodman, Founder


How do we help?

We provide regular activities such as our lending library and support groups.  We also run bookable events in the holidays and after school.  These activities include forest schools, horse riding, therapeutic music sessions and dance classes.  We also run training and awareness sessions for parents and carers and run a youth club and young volunteers scheme.

We help each other gain strength in an understanding and non judgemental environment.  We are responsive to the needs of families, always looking to improve and expand what we do. 

Our team

Meet the team

The Trustees

Steve Hyndman

Steve Hyndman

Chair of Trustees

I’m Steve and I’m a Trustee of JIGSAW. I have worked in Governance, Risk and Strategy roles for more than 20 years and am hoping that as a Trustee I can use that experience to support the growth and sustainability of JIGSAW as an organisation.  

In my work in financial services, I am both a trained leadership coach and diversity campaigner, and I believe that the work JIGSAW does is vital to helping children and young adults, with additional needs and disabilities, get a fair chance to develop and create opportunities for themselves. 

I first moved to Thornbury when I was seven, and now live here with my wife, Claire, a Children’s nurse, and two kids, Beth and Nick, both at Castle School.  

To unwind I watch movies and run through muddy fields. 

Annie Holland

Annie Holland

Vice Chair of Trustees

Hi, my name is Annie and I am a JIGSAW trustee.  

I have worked as a senior A&E Nurse in London and a barrister based in Truro.  I love long walks, the wild of an Atlantic storm on the north coast of Cornwall where I lived for 25 years until moving to Portishead just in time for lockdown, making Bramble Jelly and cooking great batches of chilli con carne and fish pie. 

Important things to me are my husband Geoff, our families – all families, they are the heart and soul of our society – and volunteering. 

Rachel Smith

Rachel Smith


Hi, my name is Rachel, and I’m delighted to have been appointed a JIGSAW Trustee. I have lived most of my life in Thornbury, and brought up my two children here also. I work in the not-for-profit sector as an impact and evaluation manager at a Government grant-giving organisation, and am keen to share my skills and experience in this area with JIGSAW. I am also a communications professional, and have strong organisational governance skills in cyber security, risk management and business continuity.  Our family is also a JIGSAW member, one of my children is a young adult with ASD, who is now at university, and our family strongly recognise the benefit of early intervention to allow young people on the spectrum to show off and achieve their full potential. I am very excited for the future of this growing organisation, and am very much looking forward to being a part of it.

Liz Farrell

Liz Farrell


Hi I’m Liz, a parent trustee.

I have been involved with JIGSAW since 2014. I have twin boys, both who have autism and JIGSAW has been an amazing support to me and my children since we began our journey into the world of additional needs. JIGSAW has helped me to gain confidence as a parent, has taught me so much about additional needs and has helped me look after my own wellbeing.  As I have gained in understanding of my sons’ needs, I have been able to give something back to JIGSAW by volunteering.  I am honoured to now be a trustee of this amazing charity and hope I can contribute to its ongoing support of children and families like mine.

When I am not travelling up and down the A38 to JIGSAW, I love to spend time socialising with friends, crafting or looking round the shops. Occasionally I manage to combine two of these things together which makes me very happy! I also manage to fit in being employed part-time as an Occupational Therapist, working with people who have had orthopaedic surgery. I’ve been working as an Occupational Therapist for more than 23 years and still love my role!

Please come and say hello to me if you see me at any events.

Emily Wilton

Emily Wilton


Hi, I am Emily. I currently work in the veterinary industry as a sales manager and poultry business manager for a UK veterinary pharmaceutical company. Previous to this I lectured at Hartpury College for 9 years specialising in teaching young people with special educational needs and challenging behaviours. I have a BSc (hons) in Equine Science as well as a PGCE in Lifelong learning and I have studied an MA in Special and Inclusive Education.  I am passionate about supporting others to succeed and achieve in an inclusive environment. As well as supporting learners, I have mentored and taught a programme to support colleagues working with students with SEN.

Outside of work, I have 2 working Labradors, one of which is certified as at Pets as Therapy dog and I hope you will all get to meet Maverick as well as me. I am a keen tennis player, love walking and the countryside, travel and culture. I also have horses and a few years ago completed an Equine Therapy volunteering project in Bolivia using the horses as a therapy for the children and young adults. This was incredibly challenging teaching in Spanish but very rewarding in an extremely underprivileged country.

I am very exciting to be a trustee and part of the team at JIGSAW. The work that they do is invaluable to enable young people to achieve their own goals and includes supporting their families. I very much look forward to passing on my experience to further help and support this.

Helen Milne

Helen Milne


Helen is a chartered accountant with public and private sector experience in a variety of advisory and executive roles, where she has gained broad experience of financial strategy, financial reporting and control, and financial leadership, as well as building high performing teams.

Helen has two sons and lives in Thornbury. 

Rob Cadman

Rob Cadman


Rob Cadman is an experienced financial advisor and respected local businessman and is volunteering as a trustee at JIGSAW Thornbury to help with all things related to business and finance!

The Management Team

Hattie Clayton


Hi, I’m Hattie and I’m the CEO at JIGSAW Thornbury. You might already know me as before stepping into this role I was Chair of Trustees and had been a trustee for JIGSAW since Sept 2020. Although a relatively short time, there has been a lot of change for our wonderful charity since I joined the team. We have gathered passion and ideas from staff, volunteers, families and other key stakeholders to form our first ever strategy and business plan. These capture the unique and brilliant impact of our special charity and set out how we will continue to build on our experience to bring benefits to the families we support over the next 5 years. I feel very fortunate to be part of this journey and to get to work with such an inspiring, dedicated team, as well as all the children, young, people and families who are my core motivation for everything I do in this role.

You can find me and Albus, my Cocker Spaniel who is JIGSAW’s registered therapy dog, at our charity’s home in the St Mary Centre a few days a week, or contact me by email at any time hattie.clayton@jigsawthornbury.org.uk.

Catherine Miles

Operations Manager

Hi there I’m Catherine Miles, mum to a son who has cerebral palsy and I have been involved with JIGSAW Thornbury as both a parent and volunteer before becoming the Operations Manager.

I have previously worked in the motor industry, then completed my AAT accounting qualification at Volvo Truck and Bus before my son was born. Since my son was born very early at 26 weeks I have had a couple of bookkeeping roles and been treasurer for a local rugby club. I have also spent five years as a volunteer for the charity Bliss supporting parents in the neonatal unit and running a neonatal baby group.

I joined JIGSAW Thornbury to support the work the charity is doing. In my spare time I love crafting and playing rugby!

Rachel Peart

Support and Activities Manager

I joined JIGSAW on its second ever session back in 2013. I came as a struggling, lonely, tearful mum to a child who was ‘different’. I found a warm caring and understanding group of parents.

Since then I became a volunteer and helped run the drop-in groups that ran initially from the Baptist church and then St Mary’s Church hall. In December 2017 I gave up my Critical Care Nursing role at Southmead Intensive Care.

In February 2018 I started working for JIGSAW. I am now the Support and Activities Manager. This involves something different on a daily basis, making sure the services we provide for families can have the best impact possible. 


our families

What they have to say

“For years I’d unintentionally isolated myself. When I joined JIGSAW I instantly felt supported and understood”


“Benjamin feels at home in the base. He loves playing there and begs to go”


“Jigsaw has been a absolutely essential part of my mental health wellbeing over the last 6 months. I have been off work due to the stress partly of having a child with additional needs and moving to a new SEN school. The support from Jigsaw and its volunteers has been tremendous”


What’s on at JIGSAW Thornbury 

Would you like to attend an event with your family?  Find out all about our latest events and activities.