Our Sunderland GP Alliance Staff

Sunderland GP Alliance has a highly experienced team of professionals who are all committed to providing the best health care possible for the people of Sunderland.

Our clinical staff are at the forefront of patient care but we also have a core team of professionals in IT, communications, finance, project management and HR working behind the scenes to support those on the front line. 

Meet the Sunderland GP Alliance team. The Sunderland GP Alliance is a not-for-profit collaboration of GP practices in Sunderland.

Board Members

Sunderland GP Alliance

Dr James Bell


James has worked in General Practice since 1999, initially as a Career Start GP in the original Sunderland Scheme. James is a full time Partner at Springwell Medical Group in Sunderland.

Sunderland GP Alliance

Dr Martin Weatherhead


Martin has worked as a GP partner since the early 90’s and he is the chair of the Altogether Better executive group.

Martin is committed to the principles of the GP Alliance and believes that it offers the best chance to manage the difficult challenges that lie ahead for all GPs.

Sunderland GP Alliance

Dr Rory Mackinnon


Rory is the Medical Director of the Alliance. He originally trained in Sheffield before completing his GP training in the North East.
He has strong interests in education and collaborative working. He firmly believes that by working together we can be the leaders of change and develop primary care in the best interests of our patients.

Sunderland GP Alliance

April Place

Nurse Director

April Initially started work in general practice as a HCA in 2007, before going on to Qualify as an adult nurse in 2012 and initially worked as orthopaedic nurse, before joining general practice in 2013. April worked as a practice nurse for 3 years before undertaking Masters in Advanced Clinical Practice and obtaining Advanced Nurse Practitioner status. April is currently working as a ANP within a GP surgery and joined the board of directors at SGPA in December 2020 as Nurse Director.

Also Research Practice Nurse Link, working with Research Team, SCCG. April has strong interests in women’s health, musculoskeletal disorders and dementia. Passionate about providing quality care that is safe, appropriate and evidence based.


Sunderland GP Alliance

Raj Bethapudi


Dr Bethapudi has been a qualified GP since 2009 and is a postgraduate GP trainer, appraiser and local Macmillan GP. His areas of interest include cardiovascular disease, cancer and medical education.

Dr Bethapudi is the co-chair of CVD cardiovascular prevention network in NENC and is passionate about driving technological innovation in practices and making General Practice more sustainable. He also represents RCGP NE as the vice chair of the faculty board.

Outside medicine, being a married dad of two boys, playing cricket, practicing yoga and meditation keeps him well occupied.


Sunderland GP Alliance

Dr Tracey Lucas


Tracey is originally from Glasgow and is a GP partner and GP trainer working in Sunderland for over 18 years.

She is the senior responsible clinician for urgent and intermediate care for All together Better Sunderland and is the Clinical Director for the East PCN.

Her main focus is on working together across our health and social care organisations to make sure that our patients have the best possible care to meet their needs and to live a healthy life for as long as possible.

Tracey is also committed to that general practice in Sunderland remains strong and sustainable during these changing times.

Sunderland GP Alliance

Fadi Khalil

Dr Khalil is a well-established GP leader across Sunderland the North East. Dr Khalil completed his medical school training in Egypt and moved to the North East almost 20 years and is an adopted Mackem. He has held several senior roles in the City such as Clinical Vice Chair of the CCG, Clinical lead for Sunderland’s Vanguard programme as well as Medical Director for ATB Alliance. Dr Khalil remains very passionate about being a GP and is an experienced GP trainer and partner at the Broadway Medical Practice and Hylton Medical Group.

Dr Khalil is a strong advocate for integrated care and providing high quality, proactive care to the people of Sunderland. He has led on multiple initiatives such as the establishment of the Sunderland GP Alliance, development of the enhanced health in care homes , development of Community Integrated teams and is currently the Chair of the Ageing Well Group with a keen interest in supporting people living with frailty. 

He continues to support the various General Practice and PCN initiatives in his role as Clinical Lead for Primary care in Sunderland and has spearheaded the primary care response to the COVID pandemic during 2020 /21 and the successful roll out of the COVID vaccination programme with SGPA and ICB partners.

Sunderland GP Alliance

Carol Aitken

Carol has worked as a GP in Sunderland for over 20 years. Carol believes in the ethos of the SGPA to support and enable practices to provide the best possible care for their patients.

Senior Management Team

Sunderland GP Alliance

Jon Twelves

Chief Executive

Jon is a Chartered Accountant by trade, training with Ernst & Young and qualifying in 1994. He has a wide range of commercial and public sector experience, and is a Chartered Member of the Chartered Institute of Housing.

Jon’s role as Chief Executive of the Alliance is to drive forward the development of General Practice working at scale to deliver better services for patients, and improve the sustainability of the sector in a challenging climate.

Jon is keen to ensure Sunderland is placed at the forefront of developments in the NHS, responding to local and national agendas.

Sunderland GP Alliance

Andrea Rose

Finance Manager

With over 30 years’ experience gained in the private sector Andrea is a highly
experienced finance professional with an in-depth knowledge of all aspects of financial and commercial management, statutory regulations and business processes.

Andrea supports business objectives and delivery and implements and manages processes to identify and effectively control financial and commercial risk.

Sunderland GP Alliance

Judith Taylor

Head of General Practice

Judith worked as a Practice Manager in Sunderland and holds a Diploma in Primary Healthcare Management. She has Vast knowledge of working in the NHS.

As Head of General Practice she ensures the practices’ operations support the delivery of high quality, effective and safe patient care. This includes supporting efficient delivery of care, patient and staff engagement, regulatory compliance and liaison with commissioners and other stakeholders.

The scope of her role covers all GMS, PMS and APMS contracts delivered by the organisation.

Sunderland GP Alliance

Anna Nesbit

HR Manager

Anna has extensive experience in all aspects of Human Resources having worked in the private sector for over 20 years before joining Sunderland GP Alliance.  With a Masters degree in Organisational Behaviour Anna leads the HR team to deliver a people centric approach to achieving business objectives.  As part of the Senior Management Anna utilises her commercial experience with a pragmatic approach to the challenges of the healthcare sector.