Olivia Timbs is an  award-winning journalist and editor who has worked for the national press, mainly The Times and The Independent, where she wrote weekly health columns, and The Observer, where she was medical correspondent and then edited its section on science and technology. She has also spent some years writing for and editing medical magazines and newspapers such as GP newspaper and Medeconomics.

Most recently she was editor ofThe Pharmaceutical Journal (the leading professional journal for pharmacists) and editorial director for PJ Publications.

Olivia was responsible for the successful launch of medical research charity START (Skin Treatment and Research Trust – based at the Chelsea & Westminster Hospital) and secured many column inches in national newspapers with the support of the unlikely celebrity duo of Twiggy and Willie Whitelaw. She also persuaded Anita Roddick to become trustee for START; this led to The Body Shop nationally backing START.

She has written one book –The Divorce Handbook (1993)– co-authored with leading family lawyer Baroness (Fiona) Shackleton.

It is her interest in the written word and how it can be best used for communication that has given her the skills to help anyone who struggles to express themselves – irrespective of their professional background – and turned her into a successful trainer. She is accredited to run courses by Tim Albert Training.


Olivia has a degree in Natural Sciences from Cambridge and has a wide interest in politics and the arts, as well as matters medical and scientific.

As a former pupil of Marlborough College she continues to take an interest in its activities and is currently chairman of the trustees of its charitable funds.

See also Board experience and trusteeships