Rainbow House in Mawdesley welcomes new chief executive Ben Blackman

Ben Blackman
Ben Blackman

A conductive education centre in Chorley which supports children with disabilities has welcomed a new chief executive.

For previous stories about Rainbow House click here /new-president-for-rainbow-house-in-mawdesley-1-8720373 and /princess-anne-supports-rainbow-house-1-8399739 and /volunteers-week-rainbow-house-1-8575640
For previous stories on Carol's work click here /much-more-than-meets-the-eye-to-this-group-of-people-1-4664323
Ben Blackman has taken over from 65-year-old Carole Cochrane, CBE, who has now moved to Spain to enjoy her retirement.

Ben Blackman worked with Carol Cochrane when he was at Carers Central

Ben Blackman worked with Carol Cochrane when he was at Carers Central

She said: “I spent two fantastic years at Rainbow House.

“It is a very worthy charity with a great team achieving amazing results for children with disabilities and I am sure Ben will take it forward to even greater strengths with their support and that of the Board of Trustees.

“I am now looking forward to spending time with my husband in our new home in Spain.”

Chairman of the trustees, Pauline Clare CBE, said: “Carole created a stable environment and put the charity in a strong position with good financial backing. Having decided it was time to retire, she leaves with the thanks of and all good wishes from the board of trustees and staff.”

Ben, 38 from Croston, will be responsible for the ongoing development of the charity, as it moves into the next phase of its development with a three-year strategy and plan to become a centre of excellence for children with disabilities.

With 16 years experience in senior management positions in the not-for-profit sector, Ben has worked for local, regional and national organisations including RSPCA, Carers Central and the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, where he was director of strategic development.

He said: “Rainbow House captivates everyone who comes into contact with it and this has certainly been the case for me.

“Having worked with the trustees, staff and parents last year, I am delighted to be taking over from Carole in the long-term and look forward to fulfilling our mission to make Rainbow House a centre of excellence for children with neurological conditions and disabilities.

“The plans we have include developing a wider array of services and support for those children and young people we work with, as well as providing more for their parents and family members.

“Being a father myself, with a strong health and social care professional background, I understand how our services can impact on the whole family and, if we can achieve that, it is incredibly powerful.

“I am lucky to see the benefit of our work on a daily basis, and incredibly proud to lead our team of staff who achieve life changing steps thanks to their professionalism and the hard work of the children and young people we support.”

In a joint statement, Pauline Clare and Rainbow House President Bill Ainscough said: “We are delighted to announce the appointment of Ben Blackman as chief executive and are sure that his background and experience will bring significant benefits to our organisation and our service users.

“His mix of not-for-profit expertise coupled with his business studies degree and experience working in the private sector through his own strategic development consultancy offers a unique style and focus.”