Reason's trustees

Nigel Stenning

Nigel is a retired public sector accountant with several years’ management experience in the courts service in the SW of England.  He has been active in church leadership for forty years, for over thirty of which he has been based in Bath as part of Bath City Church, where he is one of the pastors on the leadership team. He believes that the work of Reason empowers individuals to make good choices and helps them manage their behaviour effectively.

Fergus Law

Fergus Law is a Trustee of Reason because he has observed the good work done by its founder John Hill, the passion John has for helping clients with addiction problems, and the positive feedback he has received from the clients he has helped. In this age of austerity when public money for addiction treatment has shrunk considerably, and restrictions are placed on what can be offered, Reason offers a beacon of light where clients can be assured of receiving the client centred care they want and need.

Fergus has been a Consultant Psychiatrist in Substance Misuse since 2001, and led the Bristol Specialist Drug and Alcohol Service being employed by the NHS until 2013, and then worked with one of the major national addiction charities until 2018. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Chair of the South West Consultants in Addiction Psychiatry Forum, and Deputy Regional Representative for the Faculty of Addictions of the Royal College of Psychiatrists. He has sat on several national expert groups advising on treatment guidance, including the National Mental Health Intelligence Network expert reference group on Dual Diagnosis, and is a regular speaker at national conferences and training events including those of the British Association for Psychopharmacology. He has been a peer reviewer and associate editor for several academic journals, published 15 peer reviewed original research papers and several book chapters.


Professor Richard Velleman (FBPsS, FRSS, Ph.D., M.Sc., C. Psychol.) is both a clinical and an academic psychologist, and is a leading authority on addiction, having worked in the addictions and mental health fields in the UK and elsewhere for more than 40 years. He is a Trustee of Reason because he is passionate about high quality services for people with alcohol, drug or gambling problems, and their families, and sees Reason as an excellent organisation which provides this high quality care

Richard is Emeritus Professor of Mental Health Research at the University of Bath; a Trustee of the new International Network, AFINet, concerned with Addiction and the Family and of the UK component: AFINet UK (formerly the UK Alcohol, Drugs and the Family research network); and a Senior Research Fellow in India with the Sangath Community Health NGO, Goa, India, (India's 4th leading Public Health Research Institute, 2015) where he is developing and researching the use of innovative methods (such as using community lay health workers, or technology, to deliver psychological interventions to people with serious alcohol problems or with mental health problems, and to their affected family members. He has run major NHS Addictions Services (from 1994-1999 he was the Founding Head of the Addictions Service (covering Bath, North East Somerset and Western Wiltshire) and of the Somerset Drugs Service (covering all of the
county of Somerset), and from 1999-2003 he was a Director of the Avon Wiltshire Mental
Health NHS Trust, responsible for all specialist services, including drugs and alcohol, across the Trust). He was for 6 years (2008-2013) a member of the 15-person Scientific Committee of the EMCDDA (European Monitoring Centre on Drugs and Drug Addiction); and was appointed by the UK Home Secretary to the Board of the Alcohol Education and Research Council (now Alcohol Research UK), for the maximum of two three-year terms of office (1998-2001; 2001-2004). He has published 15 books, as well as more than 160 published refereed academic papers and scholarly chapters; and been awarded more than £9,000,000 in research income over his career to date, from a wide range of International and National funders.