East Cheshire Eye Society rely on our trustees and volunteers.

Martin WELCH – treasurer

I have been Treasurer and Trustee of the Society since 1997. I was aware of the Charity’s existence as my Mother, Ren, had been on the Committee for many years helping at events and with transport. She had become involved through a close friend, Mrs Enid Morley, who was Chairperson for many years.

My own eye-sight is generally very good, but I have needed to have cataracts removed from both eyes. I believe losing sight quality is extremely traumatic for us, and anything our Society can do to improve things for those who are experiencing this affliction is of tremendous value to them.

But such support does depend on the money which people kindly donate to us, or we sometimes can obtain in the form of grants.

I was born in Rainow in 1937, and on leaving school, I began work at Euston for the civil engineering department of British Rail, obtaining a degree and becoming a Chartered Civil Engineer. I eventually worked at Manchester until I took early retirement when the railways were privatised. I then did periods of part time consultancy work for the new rail companies and preserved railways.

My accommodation on starting work was in Hampstead, London, and this led me into being a trustee, and eventually Chairman, of a charitable housing association during the course of over 40 years. Working in Manchester, I was elected onto the Committee of the North West Association of the Institution of Civil Engineers, serving for many years, and for my allocated year as Chairman. I also served a term on the Institution’s national Transport Board.

Besides a passion for railways, I have had a lifelong interest in photography, being on the Committee of the Macclesfield Camera Club for some 50 years, currently as Honorary Secretary. I played hockey for the Alderley Edge Club, being responsible for running the junior men’s team, and am now a Vice President of the Club. Recently I became a member of the Sutton St James Church Choir.

My father and 3 previous generations ran a coal merchant business in Macclesfield and Bollington, while my maternal grandfather, Allan Carlisle, was part of the family business of A.B.Carlisle and Sons, paper coaters and stainers at Soho Mill in Heapy Street in Macclesfield.


I moved to Congleton from Hertfordshire in 1982 with my young family, and have been volunteering with the Eye Society for most of that time, mainly helping to run the Congleton Social Group, and leading on events and discussions in the Congleton area.

I also volunteer with a local wildlife conservation work party. I enjoy gardening for wildlife when it’s sunny and dabble in languages when it’s raining.






I was born in Manchester and educated at secondary school level followed by Buxton High Peak College.

I was a legal secretary and worked in Buxton, Derbyshire.

I’ve lived in Congleton for 32 years and a volunteer for east Cheshire Eye Society for 20 years.

During those 20 years I have been a social group volunteer in Congleton and a Trustee.

I am registered blind and I am a long cane user.

Mark Tilsley – TRustee

Mark Tilsley

Mark was born in Stoke-On-Trent and attended the Exhall Grange School for the Visually Impaired and Blind from 1982 – 1991. This is a residential School in Coventry

From 1994 – 2007 Mark worked at Indesit UK on the product lines assembling white domestic products, and from 2008 – 2009 he attended the Royal National College for the Blind where he gained an NVQ in Business Administration level 3. This included a work placement at Hereford Council in the customer service department.

Mark started volunteering with what was then the Macclesfield Eye Society in 2013 and became a Trustee in September 2018.

Mark got his first Guide Dog, Venice, on 7th November 2013, and they are still working in partnership today.