About US

Who Are Al’s Pals?

Al’s Pals is a service offered to all cancer patients. Al’s Pals is named after Alan Dumbell, who received cancer treatment at Milton Keynes University Hospital. 

Alan noticed that throughout his treatment, although he was surrounded by his loving family, he still felt very lonely and lost at times, and he often discussed having a ‘buddy’ to support and help him where he felt things were missing. It is his legacy to have a cancer buddy scheme like this and with the passion of his daughter , Al’s Pals was born.

Our Charitable Aims

Our purpose

We aim to be the natural choice for emotional, befriending and advocacy support to cancer patients, their families and support groups both in the hospital, in their homes and in the community across the key counties of Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Northamptonshire.

Who it benefits

We will publicly benefit those suffering with cancer and the families that are supporting them.  The service is available to anyone who requires it or who may be signposted to by the hospital and/or GP surgeries/groups.

How do we do this?

AL’s Pals will operate by promoting ongoing support within your hospital, in your own homes in person or by phone and in the community.

Our FOUNDER and Trustees

Suzanne Brown

Suzanne Brown


About Suzanne

My dad was my inspiration and my strength and to lose him to cancer has made a huge impact in my life. My dad discussed the idea for this charity with me before he passed, and it is my privilege and honor to do this in his memory and create his legacy.
I have always enjoyed participating in a variety of different fundraising events for various charities and I thoroughly enjoyed being employed in the charity sector for over five years. I am now running a business with my husband and I am proud to be an Ambassador of Milton Keynes Hospital Charity alongside running Al’s Pals.
I am a proud mother to three wonderful children, and I enjoy exercising, socialising and singing in my spare time.

Lynn Jones

Lynn Jones

Chair - Board of Trustees

About Lynn

I have been retired for about 3 years now from my job as Sales Development Manager for new home developments.

My time is taken up with my lovely family of 3 daughters and 6 grandchildren. I love to dabble in arts and crafts and am learning how to paint with watercolours . Music and dance another passion especially Rock and Roll and country music.

I have always been active in the charity sector raising funds for various charities including Macmillan .

I am more than happy to have joined Al’s Pals from the launch of such a worthwhile and rewarding cause and joining the other committed trustees and volunteers to provide much needed services to so many Cancer patients.

Emma Wright

Emma Wright


About Emma

I live in Woburn Sands with my husband Matt, daughter Daisy and our beloved Cavalier King Charles spaniel, Brewster.

I work as a Crew Training Instructor at EasyJet based in Luton Airport.

My hobbies are keeping fit, going to the cinema, travelling and watching our gorgeous girl grow up.

I’ve known Suzanne most of my life and we have been best friends since primary school. This charity is as close to my heart as it is to hers, as I am fully aware of how cancer affects families and it was heartbreaking to see this happen to Alan. I am so pleased that I can give something back to the community in Milton Keynes by helping Suzanne and my fellow trustees in this amazing charitable cause

Pauline Dumbell

Pauline Dumbell


About Pauline

Alan was my Husband of over 50 years, and to watch him deal with and fight cancer was heartbreaking. I am so pleased that Suzanne is pursuing Alan’s dream of having support for patients like him so that they will have someone to chat to. I know Alan would have loved this, and I am so pleased to be a part of this charity doing this in memory of my wonderful husband. I am retired now and love spending time with my family, especially my  three grandchildren. 
















David Dumbell

David Dumbell


About David

As Alan’s son, & Suzanne’s Older Brother, I am deeply honoured and proud to be a part of the Charity set up in his name.

I miss my Dad every single day, and owe all my knowledge and skills to him. He encouraged me when I was younger to fix things, and always try and solve problems yourself. That is why I have picked up all the skills and technical knowledge I have today, thanks to my Dad. And that is why I am happy to implement those skills to help Al’s Pals.


Stephen Whitton

Stephen Whitton


About Stephen

Stephen has been a resident of Milton Keynes since 1988, originally from London, and has had a long career in the Automotive Industry. Drawn to Al’s Pals as a volunteer in 2019, Stephen is driven by a sense of purpose and service, especially to the tough subject of Cancer. Having lost his Mum and several other close friends and family over the years, he knows first hand what it can be like to be going through treatment, uncertainty and potentially the finality of life too. With a successful business as a Coach, Speaker and Trainer, Stephen has helped 1000’s of people to develop strategies to navigate life’s challenges – and in his own words “it doesn’t get much more challenging than dealing with cancer – for both patients and their friends and family”


As a “solo-preneur” and business owner, Stephen also brings a huge wealth of commercial experience and expertise and the ties get even closer as his own Social Enterprise business, which supports Mental Health and Wellbeing  has great synergy with Al’s Pals. 

Andrea Shoel

Andrea Shoel

Volunteer Supervisor

About Andrea

I have lived in Milton Keynes for over 23 years, originally from Yorkshire, and have worked in Business Development for well over 25 years.

My family have experienced cancer and the effects it has, so I have huge empathy for anyone going through it.

I have been part of this wonderful charity for a few years now. I was a Volunteer first, then promoted to Volunteer Supervisor. One of the most rewarding aspects of volunteering for Al’s Pals for me, is visiting the Cancer Ward every week and spending time chatting to patients.

The charity has grown exponentially since inception, due to the relentless dedication of our amazing CEO Suzanne.

Suzanne has created a vision for further expansion, but to achieve this, the charity requires support and dedication from a variety of amazing people with complimentary skills to work along side her as Trustees.

I felt that I could attribute my skills to Al’s Pals success, and I definitely did not want to miss out, I wanted to be a part of that amazing journey and beyond!

Antony Smith

Antony Smith


About Antony

I have been resident in Milton Keynes for almost 20 years. I hail originally from Manchester, but have worked all over the UK over the 35 years. Most of those 35 years have been spent working in business management in both retail and wholesale organisations. 

I now have my own business coaching and developing small businesses. 

I have been on my cancer journey for over 10 years now. I was originally diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2012. Through my fight with cancer I have been very fortunate to have had fabulous treatment and support from both the medical profession (most notably the Royal Marsden Hospital) as well as from my friends and family.

I started volunteering with Al’s Pals over a year ago. I wanted to do something to ‘give back’ for all the support I have received.

Working alongside the infectious enthusiasm , energy and passion of Suzanne our founder has been amazing. I have enjoyed every single minute. 

More recently Suzanne asked for my help in pulling together a clear strategy for the charity to take forward. Using my experience to pull together Suzanne’s vision and objectives into shape has given me even more of a taste to do more to the support this fabulous charity.

I was honoured to be asked to be a trustee. I hope that with mine and the other trustees support Suzanne can continue to develop this amazing charity to achieve its goals

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