When: Thursday 14th October 2021, 9am - 5pm.

Where: Hallmark Hotel, Preston

Breaking Barriers is back after a highly successful conference in March 2018; attended by over 120 health and social care professionals across Lancashire, Trafford and the North West. The feedback was just as positive; with 100% of attendees stating they walked away having learned something new.

Breaking Barriers aims to bridge the gaps between services and provide better outcomes for the people we support. It is one day dedicated to raising awareness and understanding of the importance of advocacy and the impact it has in our communities.

With ground-breaking talks and workshops from leading industry professionals, key speakers and more; we bring you the latest trends, case law, legislation changes affecting the health and social care industry and much more.

Book your place:

Please note, if you would prefer to be invoiced for this event, please contact [email protected].


Please see below the COVID Guidelines for this year's Event. 



Jake Mills, Founder of Chasing the Stigma and the Hub of Hope

Jake Mills is an award-winning stand-up comedian, mental health campaigner and CEO. Jake founded and runs the multi-award winning national mental health charity, Chasing the Stigma, which he established following his own battle with depression and suicide attempt in 2013. From a place of despair and personal turmoil, Jake also created the Hub of Hope, a ground-breaking mental health database that has since become the UK’s biggest and most comprehensive mental health signposting tool, revolutionising mental health pathways in the UK.

Kirsty Stuart, Associate Solicitor at Irwin Mitchell

Kirsty is an Associate Solicitor in the Public Law and Human Rights team, advising on a range of Court of Protection and welfare issues relating to the Mental Capacity Act 2005. She represents Relevant Person’s Representatives, family members and is regularly instructed by the Official Solicitor. Kirsty has a special interest in urgent medical treatment cases, which involve a crossover of medicine and law and in assisting and supporting individuals in Assessment and Treatment Units (ATUs). Before she worked in public law and human rights, Kirsty specialised in mental health law.

Francesca Gardner, Barrister at 39 Essex Chambers

Francesca is a specialist in all areas of mental capacity and mental health law. Francesca’s practise encompasses all areas of Court of Protection, including welfare disputes, serious medical treatment, and property and affairs matters. Francesca regularly acts in complex welfare proceedings and has a particular interest and experience in cases involving cross border placements and dispute, children and deprivation of liberty, the international protection of adults, cases involving both welfare and financial disputes and safeguarding vulnerable adults under the Inherent Jurisdiction of the High Court.

Neil Allen, Barrister at 39 Essex Chambers

Neil practises from 39 Essex Chambers, predominantly in the Court of Protection, he is ranked I both the Legal500 and Chambers and Partners Guide to the World’s Best Lawyers. With particular interests in human rights, mental health and incapacity law, Neil practises from Chambers, teaches undergraduate and postgraduate students and delivers training to health, social care and legal professionals. In addition, he regularly publishes in books and journals and is the Clinical Lead of Manchester University’s Legal Advice Centre.



Main sponsor: O'Donnells Solicitors.

Peter Edwards Law

Stephensons Solicitors

Cygnet Advocacy Case Management System

Tickets are non-refundable. Limited spaces available.