South East London Sight Loss Council: Meet the members

Meet the Staff

Head shot of Lucy Williams, Senior Engagement Manager (south). She is smiling at the camera. she has long fair hair and is wearing glasses.

Lucy Williams

Lucy is the Senior Engagement Manager for the South and joined Sight Loss Councils in September 2022, having previously sat on the Council as a volunteer.

She was born with albinism and has been partially sighted since birth.

Lucy is a very keen gig goer, loves browsing independent bookshops, and attempting to play football! Before joining the sight loss sector, she worked in the space industry, and still has a keen love of all things spacey.

Having moved to London in 2018, Lucy has enjoyed exploring the city and is really excited to be supporting the growth of Sight Loss Councils in London.

She is passionate about working with members of London Sight Loss Council to be a force for positive change for current and future Londoners in our community. She wants to push for improved accessibility and awareness of visual impairment across the capitol.

Black and white headshot of Liam O'Carroll. His head is turned slightly to the side and he is smiling.

Liam O'Carroll

Liam was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa at the age of 6 and was registered blind aged 11.  He took up the role of Sight Loss Coordinator for London in January 2023.

Liam first joined Thomas Pocklington Trust in 2016. He was later seconded to London Vision, where he worked for five years as Project Coordinator.

Before joining TPT, Liam worked freelance as an actor, performing in roles in television, radio and theatre.  He studied English and Drama at Roehampton University and later gained a Masters at the University of Wales, Bangor. Here, he specialised in Arthurian tradition in twentieth-century fiction.

In his spare time, Liam enjoys writing fiction, reading literature, listening to audio described telly and playing board games.

Meet the Members

Leanne, London SLC member is sitting on a park bench with her guide dog. She is looking forwards, laughing.

Leanne Best

Leanne was registered blind at birth, due to her eyes not developing fully during pregnancy.

Leanne has recently moved to London, and lives with her guide Dog Dixy. She enjoys spending time with family and friends, and her interests include watching movies and reading audio books.

Leanne says: “I am looking forward to being part of South East London Sight Loss Council so I can help better the lives of blind and partially sighted people in my area.”

Headshot of Steven reed, London SLC member. He is looking at the camera smiling. he is wearing a navy blue and white checked shirt.

Steven Reed

Steven has been a professional actor for over 20 years, performing on the large and small screen, as well as in theatre. When beginning his sight loss journey, Steven thought his acting career was over. However, the theatre company Extant helped him rediscover his love of performing and see things differently. As such, his career has continued to flourish.

Diagnosed with Leber’s Hereditary Optic Neuropathy (LHON) in July 2014, Steven has central vision loss. He attended a ‘Living with Sight Loss’ course run by the RNIB in the spring of 2015 and said:

“This peer support course really helped me to overcome some of the barriers I was facing in my daily life. As a result I’m a passionate advocate for the power of peer support. This inspired me to volunteer, and I became a facilitator on the course. In 2020 I became the secretary of my local sight loss organisation, Blind in Greenwich, working closely with other societies and committees across London.”

Denise, London SLC member, is seated, facing the camera, and smiling. Her hair is tied back.

Denise Brennan

Denise became a volunteer with London SLC in 2023, and has now moved over to South East London SLC.

She was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa in early childhood and is registered severely sight impaired.

Denise works as a social worker and in her spare time, enjoys jazz, dancing, walking and painting landscapes.

She said: “I joined London Sight Loss Council to help campaign for better access and services for visually impaired people.”

Lola, South East London SLC member is wearing a baby pink baseball hat and sweater, and a leopard print scarf. She is looking away from the camera, with a big smile on her face.

Lola Lee-Walsh

Lola was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease in 2004 at Moorfields Eye Hospital. Her sight has deteriorated considerably in that time as her macular has degenerated, leaving her to rely on her peripheral vision more and more.

Lola worked as a Management Training Consultant for most of her career, both freelance, and with some large blue-chip organisations.

Lola is married, with three children and five grandchildren.

She said: “By being a SLC member, I hope to increase my confidence and self-esteem through the value I can bring to this role.

“I applied to South East London SLC as I want to be an advocate for blind and partially sighted people. I want to create change that benefits not only myself and the sight loss community, but also those who I share our lived experience with.”

Headshot of Emilia. She is wearing a light colour jumped and dark framed glasses. She is looking down towards the camera.

Emilia Okoye

Emilia was born with ocular albinism. She is registered as sight impaired, and lives in South East London.

Emilia is a dedicated Manchester United supporter and speaks at many events relating to disabilities.

Emilia said: “It’s important for individuals who are blind and partially sighted to be involved in making London a better place in terms of accessibility and services. I joined the Sight Loss Council as I want to play my part in making a difference.”

Back to top

Share this page