Abbey Solutions Consultants

Each consultant has specific skills and experience which compliments the skill set of others in the company, ensuring we are able to provide clients with a comprehensive service. All our consultants have gone through a vigorous selection process and all have a proven track record.

John Abb
ey MA
Based in London

John has been working in both the charity and private sector since 1990, specialising in fundraising,  communications and business development. John has held a number of senior positions to CEO level within national organisations. John carries out both interim management assignments and consultancy.  John is also a Trustee of a US based Non-Profit in New York. John advises wealthy individuals on their philanthropy strategies and helps them identify projects to support in complex environments.

“John’s ability to think commercially and his versatility at London Fire Brigade Enterprises shows that he is an all rounder who can succeed whatever the challenge”.  Leonor Stjepic, Chair LFBe 2019





Skills Summary

  • Long career in fundraising spanning 30 years
  • Director level and CEO positions held
  • Windsor leadership graduate
  • Established Abbey Solutions International Ltd in 1999
  • Significant experience in fundraising from foundations/trusts, companies, HNWI, events
  • Experience of fundraising for business start-ups
  • Experience of fundraising in the USA, Middle East and Asia
  • Experience of managing staff teams
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills
  • Experience of establishing a US based charity and Board member of RAFT USA
  • Supporting HNWI/UHNWI with their philanthropy
  • Experience of working with social enterprises
  • Strong interpersonal skills and highly developed influential networks


Julie Foster
Based in the South of England

Julie Foster has more than 20 years working in the charity sector, in senior fundraising positions for both large national and small start-up charities. Julie started her fundraising career in the NSPCC’s corporate fundraising team and went on to establish a successful new fundraising & communications directorate for national disability charity, FitzRoy. In recent years Julie has specialised in high level statutory and trusts fundraising and has raised 6 figure sums from major grant funders, including the National Lottery. Julie is passionate about upskilling smaller charities that do incredible work!





Skills Summary

  • Fundraising strategy and planning
  • Trusts and Foundations
  • Capital and revenue funding
  • Statutory Funding
  • Evaluation, end of grant reporting and outcomes monitoring
  • Communications, including website development
  • Start ups
  • Bid writing
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Accomplished presenter
  • Experienced user of Raisers Edge and eTapestry



Haidee-Laure Giles
Based in London and Porto

Haidee-Laure has more than 15 years of experience within the international development, human rights and humanitarian sectors in leading and managing international projects in partnerships with a wide range of stakeholders.

Haidee-Laure has worked in various countries in Africa, Latin America, South Asia and the Middle East supporting projects and advocacy with a particular focus on livelihoods and refugees issues; she speaks five languages. She is the founder of two NGOs in Portugal and serves as Vice-President of a small organisation denouncing human rights violations and promoting joint actions in Portuguese speaking countries.


Skills Summary

  • Partnership building and development (government, charities, social movements, and grassroots organisations)
  • Project development and management
  • Due diligence, project monitoring and evaluation
  • Accomplished bid-writing and contract management (UKAid, SwedishAid, private foundations, EU, Lottery Funding, UN agencies)
  • Strategic thinker
  • Policy analysis

Haidee-Laure’s main area of expertise is project management and funding, partnership building, as well as advocacy.
She has led multi-country programmes and advocacy on food justice, in partnership with grassroots organisations and government. In 2010 she contributed to the creation of the UK Food Sovereignty movement and lobbied for the first UK Bill on Agroecology adopted in 2014. She has also secured large grants from a range of EU government’s funding programmes, including DFID, and SIDA. She has also raised money from the Big Lottery Fund. More recently, she has worked on refugees issues in Bangladesh in the largest refugee camp in the world and in Greece.


  • Excellent problem-solving and analytical skills
  • High level of initiative
  • Critical thinker
  • High level fundraiser
  • Excellent written verbal skills
  • Passionate about achieving socio-economic change based on values of justice, equity and solidarity


Bilingual French/English, fluent in Portuguese and working knowledge of Spanish.

Recent deployment

Bangladesh for the IRC to carry out grant management for the Rohingya refugees crisis.
In-depth research and analysis of the impact of Climate Change on peasant farmers in 4 countries in Southern Africa to inform La Via Campesina’s advocacy strategy.
Researched  impact of food policy and trade reforms on farmers in Mozambique.

Recent Achievements

  • Responsible for the oversight and overall management of IRC’s humanitarian framework team
    to increase the value and quality engagement of key European donors in forgotten and protracted
    crisis in the Syria Region, West Africa and the Horn (portfolio value of USD$10.9m).
  • Awarded USD$8.8m by SIDA (SwedishAid)
  • Secured SIDA’s ongoing support for IRC’s Strategic Initiative promoting innovative thinking in
    humanitarian project design and delivery


Deidra Anne Baker
Based in Dundee, Scotland


Deidra has 16 years experience working as a professional fundraiser in Scotland. She has delivered contracts in every region of the country in a wide variety of sectors including the arts, higher education, youthwork, science, and medical.

Deidra has expertise in all aspects of fundraising including individual, corporate, legacy, and trusts & foundations.





Skills Summary

  • Effective bid writing – private trusts, government funders, lottery, and sector-specific funders such as science councils and professional organisations
  • Research and prospect identification
  • End of Grant reports
  • Communications and PR (print and digital)
  • Strategic Trust prospect pipelines
  • Experienced with Raiser’s Edge and eTapestry databases
  • Excellent relationship building, telephone, and face-to-face meeting skills


Penny Cole
Based in Glasgow

Penny has extensive experience within the third sector at a senior level, having been Director of Communications & Fundraising for United Response, one of the country’s largest non-profits. Head of Public Relations at Stonham Housing Association and Senior Press Officer at the London Borough of Greenwich. Penny was also Head of Publications at NCVO and Head of Partnerships at NCVO.




Skills Summary

  • Communications and PR (Experience in government, charities and public organisations)
  • Exceptional bid writer
  • Strategic thinker
  • Fundraising and Management
  • Local government tenders
  • Business Planning for charities and social enterprises
  • Prince 2 accredited project manager


Martyn Weeds BA, MA, MInstF(Dip)
Based in Cambridge


Martyn is a Member of the Institute of Fundraising and has held senior positions in a number of social welfare and animal welfare charities. He has sat on the Board/Management Committee of several organisations, most recently serving as a Trustee of a small charity supporting education and well-being projects in India, Nepal and Malawi.

Martyn’s main area of expertise is EU social policy, funding and project management.  He has secured large grants from a range of EU funding programmes, including Daphne III, Youth in Action and Lifelong Learning, and has managed large multi-country networks and partnerships to ensure all deliverables are achieved and all funding and reporting criteria are met.  Martyn has also worked with the UK National Agency to evaluate applications to the new Erasmus+ Programme.


Skills Summary

  • EU fundraising
  • EU funding evaluation
  • Bid-writing
  • Strategy planning
  • Lottery funding
  • Project management
  • Quality assurance and evaluation
  • Accomplished EU funding speaker at major conferences


Debbie Lyne, MinstF
Based in London

Debbie has held senior positions in large national charities such as Perennial where she was Director of Marketing and Fundraising; Paul’s Cancer Support Centre; The Connection at St Martin-in-the-Fields; the Rain Forest Foundation; GUTS Fighting Bowel Cancer – Royal Surrey County Hospital; Carr-Gomm Society and many more. Debbie is an excellent bid writer and now specialises in Trusts and major bid preparation.




Skills Summary

  • Bid-writing
  • Strategy planning
  • Project management
  • Trusts/Foundations
  • Marketing/communications