Meeting Information


Next Meeting

2 March 2019 10.30am to 1pm


The Pavilion, Open University, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA.


Group Work - thanks to feedback from our members we recognised that people want to talk, discuss, exchange ideas and acquire more information about their thyroid condition. For this reason, this event will be about you!

You can tell your story, listen to others and learn from each other's experiences.


Wilma on 01908 563289 or Brenda 01908 330290 or see or find us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter @ThyroidMK

Future Meetings

8 June 2019


Speaker - Dr Vasco Fernandes MBBS, MRCGP, FFHM (retired Milton Keynes NHS Consultant Physician)

12 October 2019

Speakers - Cheryl McMullan (BTF CEO - Operations) and Julia Priestley (BTF CEO - Development)

Past Meetings

July 2018

Milton Keynes local support group was again joined again by Dr Asif Malik Humayun, Consultant Endocrinologist, Milton Keynes University Hospital who kindly gave a talk on hyperthyroidism. The talk was very informative and Dr Humayan allowed time for lots of questions and discussions from the audience.

May 2018

Milton Keynes local support group was joined by Dr Asif Malik Humayun, Consultant Endocrinologist, Milton Keynes University Hospital to give a talk on hypothyroidism.

The details of the talk and slides used can be seen on our local website  and for the first time, with his permission, one of our team used Facebook to record and transmit his talk live. To watch it please go to our local website.

Despite the clash with the ‘wedding of the year’ we had 55 in the audience with 15 of them having registered for the first time.

The talk covered all aspects of underactive thyroid conditions from the past to the present treatments of this very common condition (2- 3 % of the general population). Diagnosis, treatment and controversies were discussed including the issues surrounding the use of T3 and the risk of developing heart, bone and psychiatric conditions.

Written questions from the audience were submitted prior to his talk and more followed. The feedback given from our members regarding the speaker was how patient focused and understanding he was in his responses. 

October 2016

Our last information meeting of the year welcomed nearly 40 members, with 13 of those being new on the day.This event was all about information sharing and learning from others. Some brave ladies and beneficiaries of our group stood up to talk about their experiences of living with a thyroid condition. Their stories drew much interest from the other members and many questions and discussions followed. Thank you to those who spoke and encouraged others to be more assertive in dealing with their conditions.


June 2016

We were so pleased to welcome back Dr Mark Vanderpump MB ChB MD FRCP as our speaker in June. Dr Vanderpump is President of the British Thyroid Association and published author of Thyroid Disease (The Facts) which we sell at our information event. He is also Consultant Endocrinologist in private practice with several London clinics.We had a great turnout to this event, probably helped by our high profile speaker, including over 20 new members. Dr Vanderpump's presentation was on the Management of Hypothyrodism, including detailed information on combined T4/T3 therapy research and alternatives such as 'Armour'.


March 2016

Our speaker at the meeting was Dr Sohere Roked, a GP with a specialist interest in Integrative medicine. She spoke about her approach to getting patients to feel more energised including topics around nutrition, exercise and lifestyle. In addition, she was very knowledgeable about thyroid conditions and talked about foods and supplements which could help with fatigue. We could not fault Dr Roked's enthusiasm throughout the presentation.

Her book The Tiredness Cure: How to beat fatigue and feel great for good was on display and she sold and signed numerous copies on the day. We had nearly thirty new people attend this event; it was great to see so many interested in the group and our speaker. The feedback was really positive and it is fair to say that everyone took some useful information away. For more on Dr Roked's practices and some topics that she covered, visit

June 2015

For our June 2015 meeting we were so pleased to welcome Liz Glenister, Chief Executive from Hypopara UK as our speaker. Hypopara UK is the UK's only charity for adults and children living with a rare parathyroid condition, particularly hypoparathyroidism (or hypopara). The group learnt that when the parathyroid glands are damaged - often following thyroid surgery - this can lead to complications such as low calcium levels and sometimes much more severe long term symptoms. It was kind of Liz to share her own personal story with us. Our members had questions in particular about the symptoms of low calcium levels which some could relate to. Visit for more information on their work.

We had a very busy day as we were also joined by Yvonne from community radio station Secklow Sounds who interviewed some of our volunteers, members and our speaker, Liz, for one of their shows! What an opportunity for us to tell the local people what we do!

March 2015

This was an information event  that Greta Lyons, winner of the BTF Evelyn Ashley Nursing Award, from the Clinical Research Facility at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge gave a talk.

June 2014

Dr Peter Taylor, based at the Centre for Endocrine and Diabetes and Sciences, University Hospital Wales was our speaker. He impressed us with a very comprehensive presentation about his involvement in recent research into the theory of thyroid conditions being part of a certain genetic makeup, by working with a sample of children. Extending on this he brought hope to many that one day doctors might be able to diagnose and prescribe according to an individual's specific genetic factor that might be influencing their thyroid condition. He then provided a useful answer session to a variety of written questions from our members on both hypo and hyperthyroidism, including easing eye problems in Graves' disease and what can interfere with the absorption of Levothyroxine. His answers were well received and the positive evaluations reflected their appreciation of his expertise.

March 2014

A support meeting was held on 8 March.

January 2014

We gave a talk on thyroid issues to residents of the Shenley Village Retirement Home. We had 20 people in the audience. The 2 hour session went well with lots of discussion and feedback. At the end some of the residents gave us a donation which totalled £19.00. This will help with the publicity mail out this month.

July 2013

At the Eco Festival and Dog Show in Great Linford we had a gazebo and stand with many of our volunteers and had around 25 visitors in all, some who took away information and hope to come to our next information event.


June 2013

Dr Kristien Boelaert, MRC Senior Clinical Lecturer and Consultant Endocrinlogist, Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham, gave a presentation entitled 'Underactive Thyroid - The Diagnosis and Management of Primary Hypothyroidism.'


March 2013

The speaker was Jonathon Grendelmeier, BSc (Honours), MSc, Doctor of Chiropractic. Jonathon has a Chiropractice in MK and has a special interest in thyroid conditions. He talked about how the musculoskeletal system can be affected by a thyroid condition especially when first diagnosed. At times the symptoms can be mistaken for fibromyalgia or other muscular problems. He also addressed the associated problems that he has experienced with the patients in his practice.

December 2012

Dr Elisabeth Philipps PhD, Nutritional Therapist talked about 'Nutrition to Support the Thyroid' and based her session around supporting symptoms of thyroid dysfunction including weight management, fatigue and low mood. Discussions centred on the specific nutrients in particular Vitamin D. It was a very interesting talk from a speaker who obviously did her research on thyroid conditions and how important diet and nutrition is related to our overall health.

A copy of her slides and photographs from our event are on our facebook page - Thyroid MK (Milton Keynes) group

September 2012

Unfortunatley the speaker we had lined up was unable to attend at the last moment. Instead we held a support style meeting  which was very successful.

July 2012

mk tea party smallOur group celebrated their tenth year anniversary recently by holding a tea party on Sunday 22 July. Tea and cakes were distributed amongst invited guests (see enclosed photograph) .  The Core Team members are pictured with the Mayor of Milton Keynes, Councillor Catriona Morris, together with Roger Jefcoate CBE and his wife Jean who have been instrumental in the success of the group.

For the past 10 years the group have provided invaluable support to people and their families in the Milton Keynes area who have a thyroid condition. Further photographs can be seen on our facebook page.

June 2012

Please note that this meeting was cancelled as it clashed with the Queen's Jubilee celebrations.

March 2012

Brian Plunkett, MIT Trichologist, spoke on 'The relationship between thyroid and thinning hair'.

December 2011

MK Dr Chan at MK small2The Milton Keynes BTF local group welcomed Dr Shiao Chan, PhD MRCOG, Health Foundation Clinician Scientist Fellow, Senior Clinical Research Fellow, University of Birmingham, Honorary Consultant Obstetrician and Lead Consultant for the Endocrine Antenatal Clinic, Birmingham Women's Hospital Foundation Trust, and Donna Reed, BTF Project Facilitator, as speakers for the 3 December meeting. Donna Reed presented an overview of the BTF national organisation. Dr Chan spoke on thyroid conditions during and after pregnancy; specifically how important it is to increase the levothyroxine by 25-50mcg during pregnancy especially during the 1st trimester when diagnosed with hypothyroidism.

October 2011

Dr Nicola Smith, GP at Parkside Medical Centre, Gletchley, and Consortia Lead for GP Healthcare MK, spoke about changes happening in the local and national health care system.

August 2011

Milton Keynes BTF group featured in the Community Zone:

Milton Keynes Brenda Angela Lee volunteers small

Brenda, Angela, and LeeMilton Keynes Joan Sue Pam 3 Core Team members small

Joan, Sue, and Pam - Three of our Core Team Members

June 2011

Radioactive Iodine Therapy-Patient Films

It was discussed and agreed that, due to the proposed increase in the costs of the room hire and expenses in running our group, a voluntary contribution of £2 would be appreciated.

March 2011

At our Information event on Saturday 5th March Busola Ade-Ojo, Deputy Chief Pharmacist and Jill McDonald Pharmacy Education & Training Manager came to talk to our group on "How to Manage your Medicines Effectively."

Who might you see from Pharmacy if you are in hospital?

Busola described her pharmacist’s role and how she is helped by the Pharmacy Assistants and Pharmacy Technicians in the hospital to optimise the contribution that medicines make to producing informed and desired outcomes of patient care.

Thyroid disease and its management

Jill followed on with a more in depth description of the diagnosis and treatment options of thyroid conditions. Drugs which alter thyroid function tests and interfere with thyroid medication prompted great discussion and interest from the group.

December 2010

Inge Harrison Endo NurseInge Harrison, Clinical Nurse Specialist – Endocrinology – Addenbrookes Hospital Cambridge described her role as a General Endocrine and Thyroid Cancer Specialist nurse and her work in a specialist investigation unit based in Cambridge. She is one of a team of four nurses who undertake testing and diagnostic investigation of patients who have an endocrine disorder. She stated that “Thyroid cancer is the most common endocrine malignancy making up 1% of all cancers” and her role includes patient/family support and education; co-ordination of care post thyroidectomy; ward visit on admission for Radioiodine ablation/therapy; attends MDT (multidisciplinary) meeting and monthly thyroid cancer clinics; and education of new doctors re: Radioiodine admission process. The department also offers telephone advice to patients and their families. Practice Nurses and other Health care Professionals also make use of this service. A busy but also a very satisfying role.

Our thanks also goes to the 20 members who trudged through the heavy snow fall to attend our meeting which from previous years has always been the busiest time of the year.

September 2010

Dr Michael Tunbridge spoke on the spectrum of thyroid disease. Dr Tunbridge used charts, graphs and photographs to explain the many faces of thyroid disease that was understood by all. There were numerous questions, answers and discussions generated throughout his session that continued well after his presentation. Dr Tunbridge’s sense of humour and his passion about the subject of thyroid disease won the hearts of the listeners. As one of our Patrons, Dr Tunbridge is a great ambassador and supporter of the work that is carried out by BTF.

June 2010

Dr Mark Vanderpump, Consultant Physician and Honorary Senior Lecturer in Diabetes and endocrinology at the Royal Free Hampstead NHS in London, was our guest speaker at the Open University, Milton Keynes. Initially his humorous presentation started with the trials and tribulations of doing a research project involving teenage girls when undertaking the current UK Iodine Survey. He went on the discuss his findings so far and it transpired that there are certain areas in the UK that appear to have some deficiencies. All will be revealed when the results are published in the near future. He then took questions from our audience and provided many positive and reassuring answers. All in all his session lasted for an hour and a half for the 60 members in the audience who travelled from far and wide to hear him.

March 2010

We had a good meeting with a young and dynamic GP who conducted a question and answer session. The group appreciated the chance to talk, discuss and share information.

September 2009

Dr. Tina Kenny, GP and Chair of the Professional Executive Committee, Milton Keynes Primary are Trust, provided valuable insight into the current changes in healthcare and the impact this will have on patient care. Local and national initiatives were highlighted a with an emphasis on personal responsibility for adopting healthy behaviours and avoiding unhealthy habits. Dr. Kenny answered numerous questions relating to GP and patient relationships.

Profile - Wilma Beckett

coord mkI have been a Local Coordinator for the Milton Keynes branch of the British Thyroid Foundation (BTF) since 2002. Having been diagnosed with an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) in 2000, I decided to find out as much as I could about my health condition and thankfully found that the BTF supplied me with all the information that I required. This was very important when I was first diagnosed, as it took me almost a year to begin to feel better and accept that I had a long-term health condition. Reading and learning about thyroid conditions made me realise that there were other people who may need help and I vowed that when I felt better I would offer assistance to others. BTF gave me this opportunity initially by providing training and subsequently with ongoing support when needed in this voluntary role. As a previous Health Care Professional I had the knowledge and experience that was put to good use when holding our first information event. With the help of our local Endocrinologist Consultant and a Core Team of volunteers, we were amazed that so many people came (standing room only) to learn more about their thyroid condition.

As a volunteer group we rely on support from local sponsors, the voluntary sector, community foundation grants and donations from our members. This has enabled our group to obtain audio visual equipment, local publicity material and a website. We always aim to offer a professional approach and service to all of our members including providing relevant speakers at our Information Events. Raising awareness and promoting the British Thyroid Foundation objectives along with their research based website has always been our primary aim. All this would not be possible without the support, enthusiasm and dedication from our Core Team members. There are eleven of us who take on responsibility for individual group activities. Our greatest strength is that we work as a democratic team who strive to give an excellent service to our members by empowering them to take a more proactive and responsible role in decisions affecting their own health.