Louise Barnes

Board Chair

Louise is a business development and communications professional. As a freelance PR and Marketing consultant she has advised on internal and external communication strategies for several large North West businesses and a global manufacturer. Louise successfully developed and implemented business improvement functions for national and local companies, and currently runs her own consultancy business supporting SMEs and charities with development, marketing and engagement.

Louise served as Deputy Chair and Senior Independent Director of Wrightington, Wigan & Leigh NHS FT for over a decade, with a focus on quality, safety and governance. She spent the early part of her career in the Merchant Navy, and returned to Higher Education as a mature student. She has recently achieved qualifications in Volunteer Management, IT and Digital Business to complement an HND in Business & Finance and a first class degree in Business Administration.

The Leigh Spinners Mill project encompasses two of Louise’s passions, industrial heritage and the regeneration of Leigh.

Keith Cunliffe

Board Member

Keith is a senior Councillor for Wigan Council. He is Cabinet member for Adult Services and represents Leigh East Ward. Keith has a great interest in regeneration and has represented the UK on transnational European Initiatives supporting the regeneration of former Coalfields areas. Keith works in Mental Health.

Helen Phillips

Board Member

Helen is Head teacher of Bedford High School. This is a Business and Enterprise college which is located directly adjacent to the Leigh Spinners Mill. Helen previously worked in Manchester where she had a strong involvement in community projects including the SHARP Project in Manchester which is a major ICT and community enterprise initiative. Helen is a key link between the project and the educational opportunities it will provide.

Peter Horrocks

Board Member

Peter is Joint Managing Director of Leigh Spinners Ltd the original developer of the mill and still operating from the mill manufacturing textiles. Peter is the grandson of John Horrocks who was the founder of the company and the mill and is keen to secure the regeneration and re-use of the mill.

John Morrison

Board Member

John is also Joint Managing Director of Leigh Spinners Company. He is another born and bred in Leigh and attended Bedford High School. John joined Leigh Spinners at the age of 19 but left and worked in the construction industry before returning to the company to work his way up to his current position.

Peter Rowlinson

Board Member

Peter lives locally and has worked in Planning and Regeneration for many years latterly as Deputy Director of Planning and Regeneration in Wigan and Director of Planning and Economy in Rochdale. He began his career as a Conservation Officer and sees this project as an opportunity to link Conservation and Community Regeneration for the benefit of local people.

David Liggett


As a management professional, David’s broad range of business knowledge spans several industry sectors. He has managed large teams and departments in finance, engineering, training and education settings. His experience in business development, and in managing projects and operations has given him an insight into recruitment techniques, Health and Safety legislation and application, IT implementation, effective change management and procurement. He recently qualified in the Management of Volunteers, and also holds NEBOSH (Management of Safety and Health) and Accounting qualifications.

David is active within the local community, and is also a co-opted Governor at Bedford High School and a member of a Patients Group at a local GP practice. Having has lived most of his life within sight of the mill, David is keen to be a part of the future for this iconic building.

Stewart McGarrie

Board Member

Stewart is a Project Manager with over 20 years experience, managing large projects for major private and public sector organisations. He has spent many years working in Central Government; providing infrastructure services, as part of his Project Manager remit. He has a wealth of experience in many other roles.

Stewart is passionate about local heritage and community and also runs a Facebook Group with over 12,000 members, that celebrates at Leigh and its' history.