Who Runs The Show
Is to provide access to exercise opportunities & initiatives in order to inspire people with Parkinson’s Disease to improve their lives, alleviate symptoms and connect with the community.
We do this through organising our own sporting events, giving grants to other sporting grassroots initiatives & programmes in the UK and raising awareness around the importance of keeping active to feel better.
Is for every person with Parkinson’s Disease to keep healthy and strong in all aspect of their lives.
We are a small team but with our limited resources we pride ourselves on listening to our community & hosting a range of sporting events for key groups: beginners, those returning to sport & keeping people exercising.
Charlie Appleyard, Director
Charlie is the co-founder of Sport Parkinson CIC. He was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in June 2016 at age 39. Since then he has become an ambassador for Cure Parkinson’s and has campaigned to encourage people with Parkinson’s Disease to exercise regularly under the guise of “keep healthy and strong til' a cure comes along”. He lnow lives in Thames Ditton with his wife Claire and young sons Arnie and Ted.
Outside the Parkinson’s world, Charlie is the Managing Director of Annapurna Recruitment in London as well as being a proud Board Director of Morecambe Football Club.
Sporting-wise, Charlie is a golf addict who is intent on continuously improving despite PD. He plays 5 aside football weekly, cycles on the static bike and does boxing sessions twice a week. Keep on moving!
Garen Williams, Director
Garen Williams was diagnosed with Parkinson's in 2017 at the age of 45.
"The moment I heard those words, 'You have Parkinson’s Disease' my heart stopped, and I struggled to breath and take in what I had just been told by my neurologist. Thoughts of 'My Life is over' echoed in my brain, and I thought I would never play football again.
The thought of not being able to play football anymore was devastating, but I refused to let it stop me. But little did I know that football would end up being the very thing that has helped me deal with this diagnosis.
Football means the world to me, from my earliest memories, I have always loved the sport, and it has been a constant source of joy and excitement in my life.
I read an announcement on Facebook looking for players with Parkinson’s to participate in an International European Championship 7 a-side Football Tournament in Copenhagen 2019 (also known as the Ray Kennedy Cup) and I jumped at the opportunity that has turned out to be a life-changing experience.
Players from across the UK, all with Parkinson’s came together as a team to compete in the Ray Kennedy Cup. We played well and won our group stage but narrowly lost in the semi-final.
Since then, I have been lucky enough to play International Football, representing England Parkinson’s Walking Football Team under 55’s playing in tournaments in Northern Ireland and Singapore.
I am also a member of a local community Parkinson’s Team called Phoenix 681 FC where I play every week and feel that I am playing the best football of my life.
Parkinson’s football has given me a new lease of life, when I play, I forget that I have Parkinson’s and I hope to inspire others to never give up on their passions, no matter what obstacles they may face.
I am the Co-Founder of Sport Parkinson’s, Our aim is to provide access to exercise opportunities, to inspire people with Parkinson’s to improve their lives, alleviate symptoms and connect with the community. Through my work with Sport Parkinson’s, we provide opportunities for people with Parkinson’s to take part in events, grow the game of football - both running and walking - by connecting and supporting players with local teams.
Hamish Turnbull, Director
Hamish was born in Hawick, in the Scottish Borders. However, his lifetime career with the Scottish Textiles Industry led him to swap his native Cheviot Hills for Surrey ones where he has lived since 1987. He is married to Jayne, with two daughters Amie and Chloe and a black Labrador dog called ‘Caledonia’, Cale for short. He now works full-time as an independent sales agent promoting Scottish Knitwear Products to the UK Fashion and Golf Markets.
Hamish was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, aged 55. The first place he looked to make change was with his health and “The only way forward that I could see was through daily activity and physical exercise supported by a healthy diet. Armed With a bucket load of “positivity” acquired from being a lifelong Scottish Rugby International supporter and that other virtue that is also needed, patience!”
His sporting loves are golf and rugby union but since he was diagnosed he finds walking long distances troublesome, so has introduced cycling, a third love. He now cycles everywhere and in May 2022 completed a charity cycle ride from London to Bruges.
He has a lifetime membership at both his favourite sports clubs: Old Reigatian RFC, where he is an ambassador for Parkinson’s charity events and Reigate Heath GC. “I totally get the importance of Sports Parkinson’s and the world of difference it is making to PD sufferers, to understand exercise is key and communicates to the public that PD is not just a disease for the aged.”
Martin Turner, Director
Martin is a multi award-winning television director and producer. He was Sky's longest serving employee, having joined sky when there were only 14 people! When Martin retired at the end of 2017, there were 35,000! During his time at Sky he won Sky's first ever BAFTA and created and led the worlds first Formula One channel.
Martin semi retired in December 2017, two years after being diagnosed with Parkinson’s. Martin is now Head of Broadcast for the Professional Triathletes Organisation and Executive Producer for Goodwood motorsports events.
Martin has completed various ‘long’ walks for Parkinson's including the 200 mile ‘coast to coast’ and the west highland way concluding on day 11 with the ascent of Ben Nevis.
Sophie Tisdall, Events Manager
Sophie graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University with a 2:1 in Events Management in 2000. After graduating she moved to London to continue her events career in the Events Team at BBC Worldwide - organising anything from company wide conferences & awaydays, to bringing the pages of Gardener's World Magazine to life at the Chelsea Flower Show and other exciting projects like contributor parties for Radio Times & Top Gear Magazine.
In 2008 Sophie took a few years off to have children and returned to work in 2012 as the Events Manager for Annapurna Recruitment, organising their corporate and company wide events.
In 2018 Sophie moved out of London to the leafy countryside and now resides in Farnham, Surrey with her husband Andrew, teenage children Will & Evie and brown lab Rolo.
Sophie joined the team at Sport Parkinson's in May 2022 and is loving the opportunity to bring sport, exercise and movement to as many people as possible.