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An Advisory Council update

The latest Advisory Council meeting was held on 4 February 2023, to propose and discuss some changes to the charity, specifically expanding its charitable objects to include supporting asylum seekers and refugee dentists. Currently, applicants must be dental students, dependants, or those who are, or who have been registered with the GDC.

The meeting, held virtually in the BDA Benevolent Fund’s 140th anniversary year, was chaired by Dr. Ros Keeton, who began with an outline of the latest work and the demand the Charity has seen since the Covid pandemic.

Meetings of the Advisory Council provide an opportunity to guide, support, and offer feedback to the charity. The meeting was focused on the question of ‘how best should the Charity support asylum seekers and refugee dentists, living in the UK who are facing financial hardship’. It was well attended by Charity supporters as well as representatives from the wider dental and refugee community including the British Dental Association, RefuAid, and Restart Refugee Support.

The attendees then quickly got down to business to discuss the topic at hand in breakout rooms, each chaired by Trustees or staff.

“This anniversary year is a time of, not just reflection on the fabulous work of the Charity over this time, but also a time to look forward and examine just how we remain relevant to dentists in the UK, now and in the future.”

Notes were fed back to the wider group and key contacts, messages of support, and concerns were shared for the Trustees to consider.

Next steps…

Following the findings of the Advisory Council, the Charity will seek Charity Commission approval and will continue to consult and discuss with members and the dental community before putting forward a resolution at the AGM. If you’d like to get involved and have your say, please get in touch.

If you are an asylum seeker or refugee dentist in the UK, you can seek assistance from…

British Dental Association offers free membership to asylum seekers and refugee dentists. This includes access to the British Dental Journal and library, as well as Branch meetings and networking.

Restart Refugee Support offers refugee dentists assistance with exam fees and mentoring.

RefuAid provides people who have fled their homes with tailored support to build independent and dignified lives.

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Dr Austin Banner


  • Trustee since 2010
  • Dental speciality – Retired consultant Orthodontist
  • County – Southern Counties
  • I am a Past President of the BDA Southern Counties Branch with extensive experience in committee, management, teaching, and training.

Dr Peter Crooks


  • Trustee since 2020
  • Dental Speciality – General Dental Practitioner
  • County – Antrim, Northern Ireland
  • I am the representative of the Principal Executive Committee of the BDA on the BDA Benevolent Fund Board. I hope to continue and foster the close working relationship between the Charity and the BDA, of whose members are also members of the charity. I’m also a Director and Secretary of a charitable company – CHEERS Youth Centre

Dr Molly Deykin


  • Trustee since 2020
  • Dental speciality – General Dental Practitioner
  • County – London
  • I have been involved in student support groups and I was elected British Dental Student Association President. I worked with the Sands Cox Charity when I was the Dental School Society Vice-President. After graduating I was the Foundation Dentist Representative on the BDA Young Dentists Committee.

Dr Allan Franklin


  • Trustee since 2003
  • Dental speciality – General Dental Practitioner for 35 years
  • County – Oldham/ Rochdale
  • I am the Chairman of BDA Oldham & Rochdale Section (and previous Secretary). Chairman for the E.Lancs & E Cheshire Branch of BDA in charge of section regeneration. Previous Chairman of British Society for Dental Hypnosis (as it was then) and involved in Local Dental Committees.

Dr Alex Gormley


  • Trustee since 2020
  • Dental Speciality – Academic Clinical Fellow at the University of Bristol
  • County – Bristol
  • I have worked in primary dental care and a maxillofacial unit since graduation. I am continuing my dental core training alongside academic training at the University of Bristol. I also serve as the Early Career Representative as an invited board member at the FDS at the Royal College of Surgeons of England.

Dr Chris Hayward


  • Trustee since 2013
  • Dental speciality – Associate Specialist in Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery, Lead Clinician Dental Emergency Department Newcastle Dental Hospital, Honorary  Clinical Lecturer Newcastle Dental School
  • County – Newcastle/ Northern Counties
  • I have been active in the BDA at Section, Branch, and National Levels. I was a member of the Rep Board/Body; a former member of the BDA PEC; a Director of International Affairs; and the previous BDA Board.

Dr Philip Henderson


  • Trustee since 2006
  • Dental Speciality-Principal Practice Owner and in General Dental Service for 37 years.
  • County – Antrim, Northern Ireland
  • I have been a Church Elder for 34 years with pastoral care responsibility Local Dental Adviser for Dental Protection including attending GDC Hearings and Probity work in NHS Current member “Probing Dental Stress” group in N.I.
  • Past: LDC Chair, N.I.DPC Chair, Northern Ireland Branch BDA President, Director of the BDA’s PEC for two terms

Dr Ros Keeton


  • Trustee since 2008
  • Dental Specialty – Leadership and management of Dental Services
  • County – Shropshire
  • I am an experienced NHS Chief Executive and health care leader who combines a dental background with substantial leadership experience. I am also a Chairman of a specialist hospice and EOL charity Compton Care. I am a passionate and committed advocate for dentists in distress.

Dr Stuart Robson


  • Trustee since 2006
  • Dental speciality – A General Dental Practitioner
  • County– North Yorkshire
  • Former President of BDA 1999- 2000, previous Vice-Chairman of BDA Council and also Dental Services Committee. On behalf of North Yorkshire LDC, was organiser and lead of the North Yorkshire PASS (Practitioner Advice and Support Scheme) preventing some dentist with problems having dire financial and professional difficulties.

Dr Bill Creedon


  • Trustee since 2014
  • Dental speciality – GDP
  • County – Hampshire
  • I have been in general practice for over 20 years as a practice owner in Southampton. The last four years I have been also working at Kings College, London. I am Chair of the BDA’s Wessex branch and Vice Chairman of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight LDC.