Learning Disability Team

Team photo 2021


The team work with adults who have a learning disability, to help facilitate their patient journey whilst accessing hospital services.


Working hours are: 8.00am - 4.00pm, Monday to Sunday.


The team comprises of:


Saoirse Read

Saoirse Read (Learning Disability and Autism Spectrum  Liaison Services Manager and Team Leader)

Saoirse joined the team in September 2013, she is Learning Disabilities trained and has many years' experience working in a managers role in a community setting. Saoirse works full time.


Lesley Smith (Learning Disabilities Liaison Nurse)

Lesley is a learning disabilities trained nurse with many years of experience working in learning disabilities services in Plymouth, latterly with the ASLU service. Lesley joined us from that service in December of 2009, she currently works with the team for two days a week.


Natasha Teague (Learning Disabilities Liaison Nurse)

Natasha qualified as a Learning Disability Nurse in Belfast in 2017. She is originally from Northern Ireland but moved to Australia for 18 months in 2019 before coming to Plymouth in August 2020, joining the Learning Disability Liaison Team as a full time member. She has worked within various roles providing person centred care to children and adults who have a Learning Disability and/or are Autistic, both in Ireland and Australia.


Tara Allin (Team Assistant)

Tara joined the team in March 2020. She has worked with vulnerable adults for the last 10 years. Utilising her administrative training and skills she has supported a gentleman with Autism to run his own business, worked in residential care homes in Plymouth and supported autistics adults at the local NAS group.

Tara has a passion for supporting marginalised and misunderstood people; whether this is due to cognitive disabilities or difficulties, undiagnosed conditions or subsequent mental health issues.



Jill Singh

Jill Singh (Learning Disability Independent Advocate & Associate Educator)

My name is Jill Singh and I am working one day a week with the Learning Disability Liaison (LDL) Team as a Learning Disability Independent Advocate, and for four days a week as an Associate Educator for both the LDL Team and the Derriford Autism Service.

I was a teacher for 15 years before running a self-advocacy project for adults with a learning disability called Plymouth People First for eight and a half years. I have many years’ experience of supporting people with additional needs and I’m passionate about total communication and the need for clear and accessible information.

I have been funded by the Trust’s general charity to help the Trust become more learning disabled aware, to co-ordinate the Derriford User Group (DUG, a group for people with a learning disability that meets every two months with the LDL Team and Jayne Glynn), facilitate acclimatisation visits, to plan mystery shops around the hospital and to help create easy read information in accordance with the Accessible Information Standard (2016).         

I am based in the LDL Team office on Level 7 and can be flexible over which day I work with enough notice. My email is
jilldlup@gmail.com so please contact me if you would like to host a focus group or open day, are keen to develop easy read materials for your patients with a learning disability, or would like to talk about your ward or department at a future Derriford User Group session.


Contact the Team


Social Media 

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Twitter: https://twitter.com/DerrifordT


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