Pat Abel has been Chair of Transition Edinburgh South since 2009. She also covers the role of Treasurer while we recruit for this role.  She chairs the TES management group which meets several times a month and includes Norrie MacPhail, Lynn Jamieson, with attendance as needed from the Development Consultant and/or Garden Coordinator. She is a member of the Mansion Development Trust Steering Group.


Pat is on the board of Nourish Scotland, Scottish Communities Climate Action Network, Edible Edinburgh and she chairs the Community Growing Forum Scotland. She has more than 25 years’ experience in strategic planning issues, including published work.


Hugo Whitaker is a Development Consultant working with different charities in Edinburgh to build their capacity.  This includes working with Transition Edinburgh South and the recently established Friends of the Mansion Group.  He has worked as a Service Manager, Fundraiser, Trainer and Youth and Children’s worker for over 30 years.  This has included developing and managing community gardens and the therapeutic greenspaces at Royal Edinburgh, Astley Ainslie and Midlothian Community Hospitals.  He previously volunteered at the Cyrenians Farm, and helped launch the Gracemount Walled Garden project in 2012 with Pat Abel and others when he was based at the Mansion, which led to the launch of Gracemount Community Garden.  He also works part time for Edinburgh Voluntary Organisations Council, supporting Disability and Carers charities.


Professor Lynn Jamieson is Vice Chair of Transition Edinburgh South, and a member of the TES Management team and the Mansion Development Trust Steering Group. She has also provided support and guidance to the TES Our Gracemount project. 


Lynn is an academic with expertise in all aspects of social science research. She has been Vice Chair of Transition Edinburgh South for seven years, is currently also Chair of the Scottish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and is a trustee of Befriending Network Scotland.


Norrie MacPhail

Norrie MacPhail leads on the installation of a portacabin on site, which will serve as the project hub and is scheduled for early 2022.  He is also a member of the TES Management team and the Mansion Development Trust Steering Group. 

Norrie is an experienced asset manager and builder within the social housing sector.  He has expertise in sustainability leadership and renewable energy, with strong team building, negotiating and people skills. Norrie is a Trustee of Berwickshire Housing Association, and a member of Cohousing Scotland.


Richard Whiston is our Garden Coordinator. He delivers open gardening and learning sessions for a range of participants and visitors, including children and young people, adults and community groups, such as school groups, youth organisations, disability services, and pre-school groups. Some of these individuals have additional support needs and are referred by partner agencies. Richard has worked for Transition Edinburgh South since 2013, developing the Gracemount Community Garden as an outdoor learning, meeting, food-growing and recreation space for public and community benefit. He has extensive experience as a community gardener in Edinburgh, having worked and delivered programmes for Bridgend Growing Communities from 2013-16, a youth programme for Edible Estates in 2016 working with 17-25 year olds, and leading community garden sessions for Bridgend Inspiring Growth 2016-17. He previously helped establish and lead a community growing space at The Salisbury Centre in Edinburgh. He has been a self employed garden designer and builder for more than ten years.



Tricia Kaminski has recently joined TES as a trustee. She was a social worker for over 30 years in the criminal justice system. She is aware of the role trauma can play in peoples’ lives and believes that we need to build systems that allow people to grow in resilience with improved mental, physical and spiritual health. She lives locally, volunteers regularly in the community garden, and is a member of the Friends of the Mansion Group.  She is part of SEECAT (South East Edinburgh’s Churches Acting Together) and through that feels increased commitment to the need to protect creation, the community garden being an important part of that.  She also volunteers as an ESOL tutor, visiting people to teach English and befriend.


Rona Hardie
Rona Hardie works as a Community Action Researcher on the Our Gracemount project, alongside Lærke. In addition to her work in Gracemount, she works as a climate justice organiser at Tipping Point UK and studies part-time for an MSc in Global Environment Politics and Society at the University of Edinburgh.


Chris Macefield

Chris Macefield is Workshop Leader for Transition Edinburgh South. He delivers outdoor learning programmes for a range of groups, including adults and children with additional support needs. With a background of working in NHS Public Health, Social Work and Voluntary Sector organisations, Chris has over 20 years experience of coordinating community food growing projects in different therapeutic settings. This includes hospital growing and therapeutic greenspace projects at: Midpark in Dumfries, Royal Edinburgh Hospital and Midlothian Community Hospital; along with various schools and community settings. As well as his role with Transition Edinburgh South, he is currently working for The Orchard Project in different locations in Edinburgh. Having studied horticulture, he has delivered accredited training courses in growing your own fruit and veg.


Lærke Hass is a Community Action Researcher for the ‘Our Gracemount’ project run by Transition Edinburgh South in Gracemount. She has worked with Rona, the TES team, and members of Friends of the Mansion to run an asset-based, community action research project supporting the community asset transfer of the mansion house, garden, and stables.


Lærke graduated from Sustainable Development with Sociology at the University of Edinburgh in 2021. She is currently doing an internship with Nourish Scotland, where she works on the Right to Food project, as well as completing a certificate in practical horticulture at the Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh.