The dedicated team at START are always happy to help in any way they can. You can contact individual staff via their direct telephone number or by email using the relevant address below.
We are located at Brunswick House, 62 Broad St, Salford M6 5BZ.
See the google map to find us or type M6 5BZ into your SatNav. Please call us if you require any further assistance.
Bernadette Conlon MBE, Charity President
START began life as a programme of arts courses, run for those with mental health issues by our founder, Bernadette Conlon. In the early days, Bernadette delivered courses essentially from the boot of her car, until moving to a studio in 2000, when START became a registered charity. The team soon grew and, in 2004, moved to its current home at Brunswick House. Bernadette’s vision has helped countless people over the years and continues to inspire and make Salford a better place to live.
START has grown from strength to strength, and received the Queens Award for Voluntary Service in 2015, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.
Bernadette received an MBE as part of the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list in 2021, for services to mental health and disadvantaged communities in Salford.
START is proud of its extremely active board who have been selected because of their experienced backgrounds and professional insight.
"I am a qualified mental health nurse with over 35 years’ experience, and, following a career in the NHS I moved to the University of Salford, where I am currently Associate Dean Academic for Student Experience in a large school. Working at the University of Salford and seeing the great work of START I jumped at the chance to become a volunteer, with a passion for mental health and creative approaches it seemed the perfect opportunity to support a local charity, that is going places! I thoroughly enjoy being on the Board at START. The management team and board members are committed to the success of START and it is great to be part of the journey."
Neil Withnell (Chair)
"Following a diagnosis of heart failure in 2010 which led me to give up my profession as a Building Surveyor, I was feeling very low. Thankfully I was introduced to START and began my journey as a member of several creative art courses. I was restored by the friendly and supportive group I met here which eventually lead to me becoming a board member to allow me to give something back. It has been said the one certainty in life is change, and living is always a challenge. Inevitably I have found belief, hope and kindness are essential in overcoming adversity, but I will always remember the kindness."
"I am the CEO of Beaumont Organic, a conscious clothing brand based in Manchester which I founded in 2008. Over the past 15 years running my company I have developed a broad spectrum of skills which I hope can assist START and help them pursue all the goals and ambitions they have. I'm hugely creative and also have a family history of mental health problems so I can relate to the charity on many levels and have huge admiration for what Bernadette has created with her team."
Hannah Beaumont-Laurencia (Treasurer)