MEET THE TEAM

The founders of Feel Free are Dr Karen Gardiner, Kay McWilliams, Fiona Shannon and Finlay Mills. Having been colleagues in Purple Orchid Health, we have personal and professional experience of bladder problems and chronic pain or fatigue conditions, as well as a wealth of knowledge in science, holistic health, customer service and information technology.

We know that when you’ve got the right information, you can make good choices about how to look after yourself, so that you can optimise your wellbeing. Helping you to take care of you, not just everyone around you, is our goal.

We’ve been campaigning for years in U.K. hospitals for patients like you to be empowered to manage your own condition including here in the U.K. teaching you how to use our bladder instillation Gepan yourself at home, instead of having to travel to a clinic every month to have a nurse carry out the five-minute procedure.

This kind of patient independence is recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in the U.K. 

Karen Gardiner
Director

Karen was inspired to embark on a career in female health by her grandmother’s lifelong battle with bladder pain syndrome – not that they had a name for it in those days.

Karen herself suffered 10 years of unexplained cystitis which resulted in sepsis. Underpinning all her work as the founder of women’s self-care company Purple Orchid Health, which believes that giving people good quality information empowers them to make positive choices that will optimise their wellbeing and quality of life.

The Feel Free Programme is a glorious expression of that belief becoming a reality.

 

 

Kay McWilliams
Marketing

As a newspaper journalist, Kay launched and edited a weekly health section with an interest in complementary and alternative health before entering the field of bladder health as a marketing consultant, distilling clinical trial papers into concise documents for urological doctors and nurses and their patients.

Her work as a shiatsu practitioner and intuitive life coach is aligned with the Feel Free philosophy about the limitless possibilities for the human body-mind-spirit when it’s properly cared for.

Kay also succumbed to urinary sepsis after recurrent UTis, and made a full recovery thanks to medical science and the techniques involved in the Feel Free Programme.

Fiona Shannon
Sales

Fiona was never more at home than when she was offering support about urology products to doctors and nurses in hospital clinics, until Covid closed their doors.

She’s also an excellent patient advocate, connecting people to improve treatment outcomes, and no stranger to UTIs herself, so she is perfectly placed to guide people through the Feel Free Programme.

With her endlessly upbeat approach and no-nonsense ability to cut to the chase, Fiona offers world-class support in any situation. If she doesn’t already know the answer to your problem, she’ll set off to find it.

 

Bill Taylor
Physiotherapist

Bill is one of the foremost physiotherapists specialising in pelvic health. He is a sought-after speaker and teacher on the subject of pelvic health and as such he is continually updating his knowledge with the latest scientific developments. However, he strongly believes that the most important aspect of his work is listening carefully to his patients at his Edinburgh practice, recognising that they are complex, and that the details of their experiences give guidance for their treatment. 

Bill is a huge advocate for properly understood bladder training, having seen multiple times how it can be life changing. As a consultant to the Feel Free Programme, he is a member of the private Facebook group, where he can offer general information.

Peter Burns
Nutritionist

Peter started Z-Star Nutrition to provide the highest quality information based on scientific research to both general populations and athletes. It’s built on the principle that whatever you might be trying to achieve, from weight control to wellness, if your nutrition isn’t right for you, you’re driving with the handbrake on.

Peter believes it’s all about creating habits that work for each individual’s lifestyle as well as preferences – and bladder pain patients know that what causes inflammation is different for each individual. When you focus on the food and drinks that work for you, you create strong foundations that will support you.

 

David Tilston
Physical Wellbeing

After careers in the Royal Marines Commandos and the Fire and Rescue Service, David became a personal trainer, movement coach and yoga teacher with a wide range of qualifications, in online and offline settings.

His calm and gentle approach along with profound knowledge and experience makes it easy for you to follow along with demonstrations in his short videos, no matter what level you’re at.

David’s focus as a coach is to practice and deliver methods to you that are effective and achievable. They have to be time-efficient to make them sustainable, so that they support long-term wellness.David does not believe in fads or gimmicks.

Bladder Health UK
Support

We’re proud to have developed the Feel Free Programme in association with Bladder Health UK, the influential patient support charity. 

Susannah Fraser, Communication & Media Manager, and Business Director Suzanne Evans have been on the journey of evolution with us, encouraging their members to take part and learn the techniques which can improve quality of life. 

Bladder Health UK supports patients with all kinds of bladder conditions in multiple ways including running events and local groups. They also lobby for improvements in treatments.

You can find out more at their website.