Meet the team

Management Team

Lesley Browne

CEO

Lesley joined Secret World World Wildlife Rescue in December 2017. Coming from a health background, Lesley brings a strong leadership portfolio, having managed operational, personnel, governance, financial and income generation functions in her previous roles.
Lesley has also been a Trustee for a dog charity so is familiar with the challenges charities face with regards to balancing the operational demands and financial limitations.

Email: lesley.browne@secretworld.org

Pauline Kidner

Charity Founder and Advisor

Pauline founded Secret World Wildlife Rescue after diversifying the family farm into a visitor experience. Pauline has thirty plus years’ experience working with wildlife and is widely recognised for her skills in hand rearing newborn animals.

Well known for her love of badgers, Pauline has become synonymous with wildlife rescue and continues to work for the charity, supporting the wildlife and public relations functions.

Email: pauline.kidner@secretworld.org

Laura Benfield

Head of Animal Care

Laura joined Secret World Wildlife Rescue in 2015 as Head of Animal Care Services, and before that was a volunteer with us and other wildlife organisations whilst completing her degree in conservation. Laura’s role is to ensure that the animal care team are able to provide the best care and welfare to the wildlife we treat from admission through to release.

Email: laura.benfield@secretworld.org

Elizabeth Mullineaux

Scientific Advisor

Liz is one of only a few veterinary specialists in wildlife medicine, with 25 years’ practical experience, and helps train and advise our animal care staff.

Liz worked for Quantock Veterinary Hospital for 17 years as Secret World Wildlife Rescue’s main clinical vet. In 2012 she took on the role of Scientific Adviser to Secret World Wildlife Rescue. She is responsible for animal care and veterinary policy, helps run courses and liaises with other professional organisations.

Email: liz.mullineaux@secretworld.org

Trustees

Roger Branton

Trustee

With his wife Joan, Roger has been involved in animal rescue for over thirty years, most recently caring for grounded bats.  Roger and Joan believe wildlife rescue to be a way of life, a passion they share.  Roger, a Quantity Surveyor who worked on the Bluebell Barn project, in between working full-time, dedicates his time to caring for animals and relishes his role as Trustee which he started in 2017.

Email: trustees@secretworld.org

Bel Deering

Trustee

Bel has worked in animal welfare for the RSPCA for twenty years. Her first role was as the education officer at RSPCA Mallydams Wood, and she became the manager of the wildlife and education centre there in 2003. In 2015 she took up the role of manager at RSPCA West Hatch, near Taunton, looking after both the wildlife centre and animal centre. Bel has a particular interest in education and prevention work, expertise in setting up and running animal welfare education projects, and of course, a great love of animals and nature.

Email: trustees@secretworld.org

Chris Stenlake

Trustee

Chris has taken on the role of the charity’s Honorary Treasurer. He is retired as a Chartered Financial Planner and lives in Exmouth, Devon. Chris is married to Sue and has three adult children and four grandchildren; the family home is also shared with two golden retrievers and a one-eyed rescue ginger cat called Chivers. He is interested in walking, reading, railways (both model and heritage steam) and investments. Chris is also the Treasurer of a Business Networking Group in his local area.

Email: trustees@secretworld.org

Liz Hughes

Trustee (co-opted)

Liz has taught in special needs schools in Somerset for many years and continues to work as a tutor. Her belief in the power of the natural world to engage children and create lifelong learners who care about the environment stems from her own lifelong interest in nature. She has previously worked in publishing and book retail, where she developed strong editing and proofreading skills and gained experience of management and marketing. Liz enjoys exploring, observing and reading about the wilder places in the world, as well as drawing, gardening and trying to play the keyboard.

Email: trustees@secretworld.org

Wendy Goodwin

Trustee (co-opted)

Born and brought up in Somerset, Wendy has a good knowledge of the local community and native wildlife and has been aware of the work of Secret World Wildlife Rescue (SWWR) for many years. Since 2003 when Wendy and her husband moved to the Somerset Levels, they have been involved with SWRR, calling upon the charity to rescue, treat and release injured and distressed wildlife (mainly swans) around their home.

Wendy is an experienced Social Worker specialising in safeguarding, and currently works in mental health services. Wendy has joined the Board of Trustees, having recently come to the end of her nine-year term serving as a Trustee with another local Charity. Wendy can provide Secret World Wildlife Rescue with professional safeguarding advice, as well as oversee, monitor and evaluate safeguarding adherence in line with local guidelines and national legislation including safe recruitment practices and developing internal Safeguarding Policy and Procedure.

Email: trustees@secretworld.org

Marie Negus

Trustee (co-opted)

Marie has a background in fundraising, community engagement and education with two music charities, SoCo Music Project and Evolve Music. She has a strong portfolio of fundraising success from a variety of sources and has experience in impact measurement and programme development that work across a range of areas and priorities. Marie is a Clore Leadership Programme Alumni and a member of the Chartered Institute of Fundraising, having achieved the Certificate in Fundraising.

She has a great passion for wildlife and the natural world, enjoying the countryside at every opportunity, whether that’s foraging to make preserves/wines, taking my dogs for a walk, photography, or turning my hand to crafting inspired by nature. It is hugely important to her mental health and wellbeing. She is delighted to have joined the Board of Trustees in November 2020, whereby she looks forward to offering expertise and support to further the vision of Secret World Wildlife Rescue.

Email: trustees@secretworld.org