What We Do

The GNCT seeks to promote the development of nursing for the benefit of society. We do this by funding research into nursing policy and practice. The Trustees are also committed to advancing the education of student nurses and further education of Registered Nurses. We do this by funding research and through leadership scholarships offered in partnership with the Florence Nightingale Foundation.

Each year we issue a call for research grant applications with a specified closing date. The specific focus of this year’s call is on our Grants page.

Who We Are

The General Nursing Council for England and Wales Trust is an independent charitable trust. The Trust was set up in 1983 when the General Nursing Council for England and Wales, the regulatory body for the nursing profession in England and Wales during the preceding 60 years, was abolished under the Nurses and Midwives and Health Visitors Act 1979.

The funds held by the General Nursing Council for England and Wales Trust were originally contributed by nurses and were transferred over to the Trust by the General Nursing Council which regulated the nursing profession in England and Wales for over 60 years.

The organisation’s investments were transferred to the GNCT and are used to generate income to support the charitable work of the Trust.

Annual Reports

The Board of Trustees

The GNCT is governed by a board of voluntary trustees. The Trustees bring a wide range of nursing expertise. They direct the funding policy of the charity and make decisions regarding the grants awarded.

Professor Susan Procter


Dr Susan Procter was first appointed as a Professor of Nursing at Northumbria University in 1995. Since then she has held professorial posts at City University, London and Buckinghamshire New University. Throughout her career she has endeavoured to bridge the gap between academia and practice holding a number of joint posts the most recent being an honorary post with Imperial College Health Care NHS Trust. She is very supportive of practice based research and of building clinical research capacity in nursing and midwifery. She has supervised several clinicians through to obtaining their doctorates. She is both pleased and honoured to be a trustee for the GNCT helping to shape the Trust to support the building clinical nursing research capacity and develop of excellence in clinical nursing research in England and Wales.

Professor Annie Topping

Professor Annie Topping is a nurse, health service researcher and educator. Annie has had a long and varied career clinically in surgical and cancer nursing, in higher education (Universities of Bradford, Leeds, Huddersfield and South Bank), and overseas in the State of Qatar.  She currently holds a joint appointment with the University of Birmingham and University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust and leads on nurse research capacity and capability building. Her own research is concerned with improving patient experience, outcomes and care delivery.

Dr Lynne Wigens OBE

Dr Lynne Wigens OBE

Dr Lynne Wigens OBE
Lynne is a registrant member of the Nursing and Midwifery Council, a Trustee with the Royal Osteoporosis Society, and a Non-Executive Director for AHP Suffolk. She is also a Visiting Professor of Nursing at the University of Suffolk, and Honorary Professor of Health Sciences at the University of East Anglia. .
Lynne Wigens was the East of England Region Chief Nurse from and prior to this held Director of nursing roles within acute, community and commissioning organisations. She is a Florence Nightingale Scholar, studying the nursing contribution to integrated care in Canterbury, New Zealand and Norrtälje, Sweden. Her career within healthcare has included clinical working within medicine, surgery and intensive care setting, healthcare education, and senior management roles. Lynne completed her PhD with the University of East Anglia in 2004.
A key motivator throughout her career has been the desire to ensure that clinical practitioners are supported effectively allowing them to strive to deliver excellence in patient care. Lynne researches and publishes in the field of workforce development, integrated care, lay caring, change strategies, clinical supervision, expert and multidisciplinary care, human resource management and recruitment.

Daniel Kelly

Professor Daniel Kelly OBE PhD RN FRCN

Professor Daniel Kelly has held the Royal College of Nursing Chair of Nursing Research at Cardiff University since 2011. His career-long interest has been in cancer care research and education. Current research interests include cancer prevention, especially the potential of greater awareness of HPV vaccination and screening to protect people from cancer. Formerly President of the European Oncology Nursing Society, he has co-chaired the European Cancer Organisation’s HPV Action Network since 2019, and is also a former Board member of European Cancer Organisation.

He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Nursing of the United Kingdom and was awarded the OBE from Queen Elizabeth in the 2021 new year honour’s list for his national and international contribution to research and education in cancer care. He is currently a Visiting Professor at Edinburgh University, University College London & Oxford Brookes University. He is also a Trustee at St Christopher’s Hospice London and a Public Governor at Kings College London NHS Foundation Trust.

Mel Nakisa profile picture

Mel Nakisa


Mel Nakisa is an experienced research administrator. Previous roles have included supporting nursing research at Buckinghamshire New University. Prior to that, as Research Project Manager at the Royal National Institute for Deaf people, Mel set up and managed their research funding programme.

Professor Arlene Wellman MBE

Professor Arlene Wellman MBE is the first Group Chief Nursing Officer for St George’s, Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals Healthcare Group since the group was formed in February 2022.  Arlene qualified as a general registered nurse in Trinidad and migrated to the UK with the intention of training as a midwife, however she fell in love with elderly care nursing and has more than 20 years’ experience in this specialty. She continues to contribute to this field as the SRO for the Capital Nurse Older Person’s Qualification in Specialism development program.

Arlene is the one of most senior internationally trained nurses in the UK and was awarded an MBE in recognition of her contribution to nursing as part of the Queen’s Birthday Honours in June 2021. She has a first-class BSc Hons degree in Health and Social Care for Older People, a MSc in Clinical Healthcare Practice, a Florence Nightingale Leadership Fellow and is a visiting Professor with Kingston University

As Executive Director for Nursing, Arlene has responsibility for the nursing, midwifery, healthcare support and allied healthcare professional workforce; is Executive Maternity Safety Champion and Baby Friendly Guardian and the Director of Infection Prevention and Control (DiPC) across the St George’s, Epsom and St Helier Healthcare Group. Arlene is also a WRES expert and Executive sponsor for the Racial Equality and Cultural Heritage staff network at ESTH.

Get In Touch

Grant Application Questions
General Correspondence