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Trustee Board

Michael Burdon

Mike Burdon Vice President Chair Scientific

Mr Michael (Mike) Burdon is a consultant ophthalmologist with an interest in neuro-ophthalmology at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham. He underwent subspecialty training in Brisbane, St Thomas’ Hospital, Moorfields Eye Hospital, and the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery.

Mike was chair of the RCOphth Scientific Committee and remains chair of the British Isles Neuro-Ophthalmology Club. He has an established reputation as a teacher of neuro-ophthalmology, speaking at numerous national and international meetings, and co-authoring “The Neuro-Ophthalmology Survival Guide” with Anthony Pane and Neil Miller and has extensive experience in the diagnosis and management (including surgical correction) of adult motility disorders. His main research interests are papilloedema and idiopathic intracranial hypertension.

Mike took over as president of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists on 24 May 2017.  He is committed to RCOphth maintaining the high standards of education, training and assessment to ensure that the development and delivery of world-class eye care for all patients is at the heart of the ophthalmology profession.

Gordon Cropper


Gordon Cropper is a solicitor and has spent more than thirty years in the courts’ service as a justices’ clerk and a justices’ chief executive in London. Since 2004 he has been an adjudicator on traffic penalties with what is now London Tribunals. He has undertaken a number of voluntary roles, notably as a member, and chair, of the Independent Monitoring Board of HM Prison, Pentonville. He was also a trustee of a mental health charity and of the Association of Members of Independent Monitoring Boards. He is a firm believer in the representation of lay people in medical institutions. For five years he was a member of the Lay Advisory Committee of the Royal College of Pathologists, and from 2009 to 2015 a member of the Lay Advisory Group of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists. A member of the MCC, he is a keen cricket follower.

Mohamed Elalfy


Mohamed is a Consultant Ophthalmologist at Queen Victoria Hospital and Eye Bank NHS Trust, and Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells Hospital NHS Trust. His main interests are Cornea, Cataract, Ocular Surface and Refractive Surgery.

He is active in research holding both Masters and Doctoral degrees in Ophthalmology. He worked previously as a Clinical Assistant Professor in Ophthalmology in The University of Nottingham. He has more than 30 peer reviewed publications. He supervises Masters and Doctoral degrees. Mohamed is a Clinical Researcher/Lecturer in The Research Institute of Ophthalmology in Cairo, Egypt.

Mohamed teaches and trains fellows in UK and overseas. He is regularly invited to international meetings to give talks and courses. He is the current Fellowship Director in Corneoplastic Unit, Queen Victoria Hospital. He travels overseas to deliver lectures and live surgery.

Mohamed is a current College Council member as the Regional College Representative for South East Thames

Declan Flanagan

After completing his training in Southampton and Moorfields, Declan went on take up a consultant post in Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge and Hinchingbrooke Hospital, Huntingdon in 1984. Here he established a comprehensive medical retinal service and was appointed as Medical Director of Hinchingbrooke Hospital from 2001 to 2004.

In 2004 Mr Flanagan joined the Medical Retinal Service of Moorfields Eye Hospital, where he became Deputy Medical Director in 2007 and then Medical Director in 2010. Declan retired from the post of Medical Director in 2018 but remains in active NHS and private medical retinal practice.

His current management responsibilities include Clinical Quality & Safety in Moorfields Private, Chairman of the Joint Research Governance Committee between Moorfields and the Institute of Ophthalmology in UCL as well as overseeing Clinical Quality and consultant recruitment in Moorfields in the United Arab Emirates.

At the end of his 9 years as Medical Director Moorfields was rated Good overall and Outstanding for clinical effectiveness by the Care Quality Commission.

In May 2019 he was appointed to the post of Vice President of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists with specific responsibility for policy, communications with membership and the NHS as well as ophthalmic workforce development.

Mohit Gupta

15.02.06 RCOG2599 MOHIT G 1

Mohit Gupta is working as a Consultant Ophthalmologist and Clinical Director at United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS trust. His special interest is Glaucoma. He has over 40 publications in Peer Review journals. He is also actively involved with the Clinical services development and strategy in his trust.

His association with the college includes two terms as Regional Representative for Trent. He also sits on the Professional standards and Scientific committees of the college. He has recently been elected the Honorary Secretary of the college and chairs the Equality Diversity and Inclusion committee of the college. He has also represented the College on the Clinical council for Eye Health commissioning.

Phillip Hunt

© Roy Peters Tel: 0121 449 7613 roy@roypeters.co.uk NUJ recommended terms & conditions apply. Moral rights asserted under Copyright Designs & Patents Act 1988. Credit is required. No part of this photo to be stored, reproduced, manipulated or transmitted by any means without permission.

Lord Hunt has been a member of the House of Lords since 1997. He is currently Shadow Deputy Leader of the House. He also speaks for the Opposition on Health, Cabinet Office and Lords reform. He was Deputy Leader of the House of Lords and Minister of State at the Department of Energy and Climate Change from 2008-2010 and also served as a Minister in the Department of Health, Department of Work and Pensions, Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Ministry of Justice.

He was the first Chief Executive of the NHS Confederation, and previously Director of the National Association of Health Authorities and Trusts (NAHAT) from its formation in 1990. Phillip Hunt was made a Privy Counsellor in 2009. Lord Hunt holds Honorary Doctorates from the Universities of Aston, Birmingham and Birmingham City and was awarded the OBE in June 1993.

Parwez Hussain

Nicholas Wilson-Holt

Nicholas (Nick) Wilson-Holt is the Honorary Treasurer and chairs the Finance Committee. He is a consultant ophthalmologist at the Royal Cornwall Hospital Truro where he has a special interest in diabetic retinopathy.

He has been chair of the Quality and Safety group and involved with numerous projects including updating of the CVI form and the revised College cataract surgery commissioning guidance. He represented the College on the Clinical Council for Eye Health Commissioning and was a member of the recent NICE adult cataracts management guideline committee.

Nick has examined for the College for many years, including as senior examiner for the Diploma exam. He has a strong commitment to support training and professional standards for both ophthalmologists and allied health professionals and has been an education visitor for the General Optical Council.

Varo Kirthi


Varo Kirthi (known as Kirthi) is a Specialty Registrar in Ophthalmology in KSS/South Thames and Chair of the Ophthalmologists in Training Group (OTG).

Having previously been Deputy Chair, Kirthi has represented the OTG on several College committees, including the Training Committee. In his current role, Kirthi chairs a very active group of 20 registrars who represent the interests of trainees in all aspects of College business. On behalf of the OTG, Kirthi sits on the RCOphth Council and Trustee Board.

Kirthi also brings experience from his previous role as Clinical Fellow to the President of the Royal College of Physicians (RCP), as part of the NHS Medical Director’s Clinical Fellow Scheme. During this year, he lead on national RCP guidance for better ward round practice, co-authored NICE guidelines on intravenous fluid therapy and explored the need for generalists in hospital medicine.

Kirthi is currently based at King’s College Hospital in London, undertaking a PhD as part of out-of-programme research.

Brian Smith


Brian Smith is a Fellow of the Chartered Association of Certified Accountants.  After studying Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Oxford, his early career was in manufacturing industry. He subsequently spent over 20 years in life insurance, working, inter alia, for Aviva and Legal and General. He then became Finance Director of a pensions company which became independent from the Alexander Forbes Group following a management buyout. His particular interests lie in management information and business planning.

Brian lives near Colchester and is a member of the Audit Committee of the Diocese of Chelmsford and Treasurer of the Deanery of Witham in the Church of England.

Fiona Spencer


Fiona Spencer has been a consultant ophthalmologist at Manchester Royal Eye Hospital for 16 years and provides a tertiary referral service for the North West for adult glaucoma. She has been instrumental in service redesign, developing an in-house optometric-led glaucoma assessment (OLGA) unit and a community-based glaucoma nurse practitioner role and was responsible for setting up a referral refinement service for glaucoma in 2000.
Robert Taylor



Robert Taylor has worked as a consultant (general and paediatric ophthalmology) in York, for 20 years, specialising in general and paediatric ophthalmology and adult motility. He has published 53 peer review papers, made 65 oral/poster presentations at scientific meetings, and given 83 lectures, in York, nationally and internationally. He has also published 2 books (Key Topics in Ophthalmology) plus a chapter in a Taylor/Hoyt’s Paediatric Ophthalmology text book (on vision and reading). Research interests include refraction accuracy, reading and maximising visual potential in cataract patients. Robert is also interested in various models of healthcare delivery. His most recent publication is a large systematic review on the practice of using colour (overlays or lenses) for those with reading difficulty.