First5 Contacts

You can find a First5 lead for your specific area and country below.

First5 Committee



Jodie Blackadder-Weinstein

I am currently based in Birmingham as the Lecturer in Military General Practice combining both civilian and military clinical practice with research and teaching. She feels very lucky to be in a portfolio role (having been full time clinical before this posting, and expecting return to full time clinical after this post) and is determined to use the luxury of increased non-clinical time to improve the workload, worklife and sense of self-worth and community amongst the First5 cohort.




England First5 Lead


First5 Lead


Beds and Herts

Ahmed Rashid



Muhammad Farhan Amin

A GP Partner in Barrow-in-Furness, Lancashire with a passion for integrated community care. I am the founder of an online peer-to-peer support platform and I am the chief architect of the Walney Health and Wellbeing Cottage a non-profit community led initiative. I aim as First5 lead is to support the transition from AiT to First5 and to assist newly qualified GP’s in connecting them with prospective employers as well as providing guidance on the financial challenges that may arise.


East Anglia Vacant  

Rachel Marchant (Community Lead)

I am a portfolio GP working part time in a salaried post, for the local out of hours service and as a clinical support fellow for cancer at the RCGP. I aim to use the role as First5 Lead to improve engagement with, and enthusiasm for the RCGP at faculty level as well as improving interaction and involvement with AiT's, as these are the individuals who will make up the future First5 cohort.



Faraz Anjum

I am a salaried GP currently undertaking a post CCT fellowship in leadership/management. I also work with the local CCG whilst studying for a degree at DeMontfort University in Medical Leadership, Education and Research. I was previously the East Midlands AiT Lead and currently sit on the QMTS Committee. My aim as First5 lead is to work towards better assimilation of First5s within the college and making sure newly qualified GPs continue to get all the support possible ensuring they stay on as members of the college as a result.


North East London

Mary Burtenshaw

My name is Mary Burtenshaw and I work as a salried GP in Loughton. As North East London's First5 co-lead and a Faculty board member, my aim is to increase local First5 engagement and set up events tailored to the needs of our members. I am also a member of the Pan-London AiT/First5 committee, working to guide London's GP trainees through the transition to qualified GPs.


Lisa Collins

I am a long-term Locum GP for several Practices within Camden CCG. I am developing specialist interests in Paediatrics and Dermatology. I enjoy teaching and organising educational events as EASE Tutor for the North East London Faculty. I am also Honorary Secretary for the RCGP London AiT & First5 committee. My aims as NEL First5 co-lead are to support GPs through facilitating learning, networking and mentoring, and to help optimise wellbeing.



North and West London

Camille Gajria

I'm a GP in Ealing CCG and help run our sessional group. I am secretary of the RCGP Junior International Committee and e-moderator for Primary Care International.  I'm keen for First 5s to have more opportunity to meet colleagues who can help them develop their careers.


South London

Tabassum Khandker

I currently work as a salaried GP in Wandsworth CCG, as well as doing OHH session, and I am also the Vice Chair for the Pan London First5 Committee. As a former VTS representative for London's trainee committee, my priorities are optimising the training experience as well as smoothing the transition from AiT to First5. I hope to work with my colleagues and our College to support AiT's and First5's locally and London wide, to represent what our interests and what is important to us GP's. 


Humber and the Ridings Vacant  

Humera Hasan

I am the First5 lead for Mersey and currently in my second year as a First5. I work as a fulltime salaried GP in Liverpool and I am also the lead for our local CPD group. Since November 2015, the local faculty and I have supported newly qualified GPs in their transition from trainee to the First5. We organise various relevant courses, conferences  and career events and are looking to add in some social events in the coming year.



Dilsher Singh

I am a salaried GP in Birmingham with a special interest in undergraduate and postgraduate teaching as well as Cardiology. The last three years, I have run several successful First5 events in Midlands and delivered a successful Midland faculty conference. My aim is to increase participation and engagement across the region, for which I am in the process of developing sub-regional leads to run local CPD events, and also hope to deliver high quality educational content directly onto your laptops and smart devices through use of various online platforms.


North East

North West Vacant



Sophie Aldridge

My name is Sophie Aldridge and I am co-lead for Severn First5.  I am a newly qualified GP working as a locum in the Bristol area and I have just completed a leadership extension to training.  My interests lie in engaging First5 members by providing them with targeted and useful events as well as promoting the benefits of ongoing RCGP membership.


Helen Pidduck


South East Thames

Phyllis Chan

I am a full time GP based in Hailsham, East Sussex with a special interest in medical education. As First5 lead, I will work to promote increased interaction and harmony amongst the First5 cohort as well as with the College. I would also like to work towards helping newly qualified GP's to achieve a better work life balance by working on recruitment issues, particularly through promoting general practice as a career for medical students and junior doctors.


South West Thames

James Thambyrajah

I am a full time Salaried GP working in Cheam for Sutton CCG. I volunteer as a GP for St Johns Ambulance  at numerous Sporting events including Lords cricket ground and Wimbledon. I have a keen interest in dermatoscopy and dermatology in primary care.



Richard Pratt

I am a six session a week GP Partner at Three Spires in Truro, Cornwall. I am a keen proponent of the benefits of technology in helping to improve healthcare and as Director of a health tech company, regularly collaborate with other Royal Colleges. I also sit on several boards which help to refine GP training as well as providing the opportunity to reappraise what the future may hold for us First5’s.


Nick Hodges

Thames Valley

Samar Bhutoria

I am a salaried GP with an interest in medical education and have authored a book on the MRCGP CSA Examinations. I am involved in arranging CPD meetings and learning groups for First5 GPs in aid of their career progression, and as part of my role I aim to further improve and facilitate communication and coordination amongst First5 GPs.


Vale of Trent

Rebecca McConnell 

I work as a Salaried GP in Long Eaton, Derbyshire, after training in Derby and working in Nottingham City for a year, while completing my GP Fellowship. I am currently working towards a Masters in Medical Education at University of Nottingham and hope to become a GP Trainer in the next 1-2 years. I helped to set up the Nottingham First5 group again in Sept 2017, which plans monthly meetings on a variety of topics - from clinical to social (Nottingham First5 GPS). I have joined the Vale of Trent Faculty as First5 lead to help organise events for and represent new GPs on the faculty board.


Wessex Vacant  

Julia Thomas

I am a salaried GP in the Bradford region with a special interest in Dermatology. Other interests include running (sub 3 hour marathon) and dramatic arts. As First5 lead I aim to ensure that General Practice remains the heart of the NHS though support and representation of those at the start of what should be a long and satisfying career.


Enisha Das

Hi, I am a salaried GP based in Wakefield. As co-lead I aim to support improved access to education, learning resources, peer support and local networks amongst First5s. My other interests also include women’s health and paediatrics. I look forward to working with you to promote our commitment to the profession and maintaining our standards of care. I am here as your representative so please feel free to e-mail me any queries or suggestions.



South Yorkshire & North Trent

Hareen De Silva

I currently work as a salaried GP locuming occasionally. I qualified as GP in August 2015 & I am still getting to grips with general practice. I am about to start a Masters in Public Health with the thought of becoming an international GP. Away from my work, my hobbies include ballroom dancing & climbing (or falling more accurately). As First5 Lead my aim is to build resilience amongst newly qualified GP's as well as supporting us with mentoring and education events. 




Scotland First5 Lead


First5 Lead


North East Scotland

David Lovell

I am a salaried GP working in North East Scotland. I am based in Portlethen, a small town close to the city of Aberdeen, but surrounded by beautiful countryside. I also work as a part-time Teaching Fellow for the University of Aberdeen. This involves teaching medical students about GP, and is hugely rewarding! My aim is to help foster a sense of community among local First5 GPs and offer a welcoming point of contact to anyone coming into the area.


East Scotland

Amy Knighton

My name is Amy Knighton and I am the First5 lead for East Scotland. I am a salaried and locum GP in Tayside, Scotland and I am also doing a paediatric scholarship via NHS education for Scotland. My aim as First5 lead is to try and improve engagement in the East of Scotland, especially facilitating the transition from AiT to First5.


North Scotland

Sabeel Saleem

I did my GP training in the North of Scotland and I served as a trainee representative for my Faculty. I qualified in 2014, became a partner in 2015 in Argyll, Scotland and  I am the current First5 lead.  My aim is to increase the participation amongst the First5 cohort and create a vibrant platform for First5’s, where the college can promote its values, benefitting the patients and creating the future leaders.


South East Scotland Vacant  
West of Scotland

Lynsey Yeoman

I am currently a part-time salaried GP in Glasgow, an academic GP fellow at the University of Glasgow and a communication skills and vocational studies tutor at the medical school. As your First5 lead, I hope to facilitate continued engagement between College and GP’s post CCT by enhancing our CPD events and promoting these via our new social media pages as well as exploring webinar technology to expand access. I also plan on developing closer links with the local medical school to promote general practice as a positive career choice.




Wales First5 Lead


First5 Lead


Wales (Council) Premini Balasekaran   
North Wales Vacant

South East Wales

Anish Kotecha

Having established a portfolio career I work as a GP partner in South Wales as well as acting as a MacMillan GP Facilitator. With my interest in medical education I am a Cardiff University communication skills tutor and examiner. Being a proud member of the Royal College I work as an EKU author and write questions for the InnovAiT journal as well as sitting on the website advisory panel. As your First5 co-lead I am keen to ensure a smooth transition from AiT member to First5 member and acting as a liaison between First5 members and the Royal college.


Viv Nicholls

My name is Viv Nicholls and I am co-lead for the SE Wales faculty. I attended university in Cardiff and intercalated in Psychology. I completed my VTS with the Glamorgan Valleys, and now work in the South Wales valleys as a locum and in Cwm Taf OOH. I am interested in psychiatry, paediatrics, and Women's health. 


Premini Balasekaran

Following qualification from the Bradford Training Scheme in 2014, I have been serving as a freelance GP across the south of Wales. As a qualified physician, I have also developed an interest in elderly care and general internal medicine. In addition to being co-lead for SE Wales, I am also the RCGP Deputy Welsh Council representative. Outside work I read regularly at the local church, enjoy hiking and dancing the Argentine Tango. As First5 co-lead I hope to help facilitate and enable educational opportunities and support local First5’s.









South West Wales

Ritu Nirula

My name is Ritu Nirula and I am currently working in Swansea, South Wales as a GP partner for 6 sessions. I also regularly do some sessions in the local out of hours service. As First5 Lead, I am hoping to be accessible and available as a point of contact in order to support members with any concerns or queries. I am hoping to develop our local First5 network and help provide useful events for First5 members in our area.


Katie Williams

I'm a sessional GP working in a variety of town, rural and coastal practices in West Wales. As First5 faculty co chair I hope to establish a better network of first5 members locally.



Northern Ireland First5 Lead

Northern Ireland

First5 Lead


Northern Ireland

Claire McKinney

My name is Claire McKinney and I am First5 lead for Northern Ireland. I am a part-time partner in Co. Antrim, and am currently developing an interest in Family Planning. My aim is to help facilitate the transition from AiT to First5, and to provide a point of contact for those looking advice/assistance from the College.



Military/Rural First5 Lead


First5 Lead



Fiona Van Der Merwe (Navy)

Natalie Taylor (Army)

Toby Holland (RAF)


Sanjeev Maskara

Born and bred in rural Northern India, with 19+ years of clinical work experience in the UK, Rural Australia and India. I currently work as a sessional GP in Harrow, Greater London. I am passionate about teaching and training as well as providing high quality care with high accessibility, through a cost effective, sustainable healthcare system. I look forward to working with fellow First5’s to achieve the mission, vision, and values of the rural forum.


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