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Our people are at the heart of  everthing we do.

Union Leadership Team

Linda Rolph, General Secretary Linda Rolph, General Secretary
Linda Rolph is elected to run Advance daily and be the key spokesperson and chief negotiator. She has been our general secretary since 1997.

Linda grew up in St John’s Wood, North London, in Council Housing. She left school at 16 and joined Abbey National shortly afterwards. After only three weeks, she was promoted and, over the following years, has built up a comprehensive knowledge of different parts of the Bank, which has helped her in her current role.

At 17, Linda became fully involved in the Abbey National Staff Association (as the Union was then named) and, from that time, has been involved in all aspects of the running of the Union. Indeed, one of Linda’s first accomplishments as General Secretary was to bring Abbey National Group Union into the TUC as the first trade union from the Banking industry to join. The Union leadership team delivered this with John Monks.

Linda is unique amongst General Secretaries in holding an Evening Helpline every Thursday in which Union members can receive confidential advice directly from the General Secretary. By exception, she is also available to take emergency calls at weekends and, therefore, (as her friends will testify!) takes her mobile everywhere. In subscribing to Corporate Social Responsibility, Linda has given off her time by sitting on Employment Tribunals in Holborn, where she used her experience to ensure that people in various industries received a fair outcome to their issues with employers.


Linda has always been interested in politics. She also supports many different charities, helping a variety of causes and especially the local Dog Rescue (in addition to Dogs Trust), the National Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Children and the Salvation Army. With her support of charities, one of Linda’s favourite quotes comes from Winston Churchill, who said, “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give”.


Linda has also mentored a boy throughout his childhood and teenage years. Whilst she brought him to National Heritage sites such as Hampton Court, the Tower of London and Stonehenge, he introduced her to the joys of the latest series of the “Planet of the Apes” trilogy!


When she eventually gets time to relax, Linda enjoys taking her rescue Staffie (Blossom) for walks and educating her Dog on “life according to LBC”. Indeed, having listened to Radio 4 and LBC, Blossom herself can now also discuss politics! When adding a dog to a family, Linda supports the current project being run by the Battersea Dogs Home, which asks people to adopt a rescue dog. She herself always adopts a rescue dog and lives by the motto “Adopt – don’t shop”. Linda also enjoys reading and socialising with her family and friends.

Rose O'Neill, Deputy of the General Secretary Rose O'Neill, Deputy of the General Secretary
Rose is the nominated Deputy for Linda and a lead negotiator in areas such as Job Security and Policy.

Rose joined the union when she started working for Abbey National in 1977. ANSA was a Staff Association then and she is delighted to have been on the journey from ANSA to Abbey National Group Union (ANGU) and currently Advance.

She spent approximately 18 years in Branches, and her role went from being a cashier to a team manager when we had bigger branches. Her last position in the Branch Network was that of Personal Financial Adviser. In approximately 1997, she applied for a Team Manager role in Milton Keynes Head Office and relocated there.

Her early years with the union were as a local representative, then she joined the NEC and trained as a Disciplinary Officer.

Advance are the voice of our members, and she is very proud to be part of this team. Rose is often joined in virtual meetings by her two cats Tilly & Milly.

Jim Leonard, Assistant to the General Secretary Jim Leonard, Assistant to the General Secretary
Jim works directly assisting Linda daily. This includes making representations in critical areas such as policy & job security and meeting with our workplace reps and senior leaders.

Jim has been a member of Advance union since he joined Abbey back in 2001 and became a Rep in 2003. Since then he has held a number of positions within Advance, starting as a local rep before being elected to the National Executive Committee (NEC) and later becoming the Chair of the NEC. At the time the bank acquired B&B,  UBAC (B&B union) merged with Advance and he was brought on to Linda’s full-time team as a caseworker. He is now one of the Assistant General Secretaries.

The reasons he became a rep in the first place are still as relevant today as they were all those years ago, to work hard to ensure that people are treated fairly and with dignity, while at work and in accordance with our agreed policies and procedures,  to help grow Advance and to actively promote Advance’s core values.

He is proud of the contribution Advance has made to people’s pay and conditions, in particular, the work Advance did to develop the Pay Progression Scheme as well as leading the way both in banking and Trade Unions with our affiliation to the Living  Wage Foundation.

Away from work he is happily married to Clare and has a son, Jack. He is a supporter of Millwall F.C, a keen gamer as well as an avid cyclist.

Gerry Moloney, Assistant to the General Secretary Gerry Moloney, Assistant to the General Secretary
Gerry Assists Linda directly with our communication and managing the day-to-day running of the Advance helpline and office.

Gerry has worked for Advance for over ten years and is proud to be Assistant General Secretary.

In his previous role as head of communication, he was responsible for much of the written communication Advance produces, including our magazine. He combines this with broader duties and attends partnership meetings with Santander to discuss the bank’s strategic changes and concerns raised by Advance. Gerry recently also supported the North Branch Division from the union leadership perspective.

He is also responsible for coordinating and organizing meetings of Advance trustees accountable for decisions relating to Advance assets. Like all of Linda’s team, Gerry also supports members with all aspects of casework and has a broad knowledge of Santander policy and employment law.

“The member is at the Centre of everything that I do. Whether it is representing them at hearings, attending meetings with senior management or writing communications to our members, my focus is on how the needs of the member can be best served”.

Keith Hoyland, Senior Consultant Keith Hoyland, Senior Consultant
Keith is a full-time consultant and focuses his time on casework and supporting business areas such as Financial Support, Economic Crime and Homes division. He is also the union's lead on technology and digitalisation.

Keith grew up in a mining village in South Yorkshire and felt first-hand the impact of the miner’s strike in 1984, as the pit where it started is 1 mile from his home. Whilst he can recognise both sides had their faults in the dispute, the fellowship and community support showed him the power of unions when looking after their workers and each other.

He has always been a long-time campaigner on equality and green issues, locally and nationally. He has worked through different roles in Advance from 2003 from workplace representative, National executive and now a full-time consultant for over 12 years.

Keith is an advocate for partnership working. Whilst we accept we have common goals, as an independent trade union acting in the interests of our members individually and collectively helps ensure we look after the interests of the workers and will always be our priority. However, as a union looking after our members, we can’t ignore it remains a factor we must work with change to ensure the company remains prosperous to maintain Job Security.


Outside of work, he supports SheffieldSDteelers (an ice hockey team), one of the leading UK teams with crowds of 8000 to many games. He knows they are still a relative amateur compared to the big boys in the NHL.

Roberta Barbour, Senior Consultant Roberta Barbour, Senior Consultant
Roberta is a full-time consultant, and focuses her time on casework as well as supporting business areas primarily based in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Roberta has been involved with Advance for over 20 years.  She has held various positions including local representative, national representative as well as vice-chair of the NEC.  She is now a full-time consultant supporting members with various meetings and hearings inside Northern Ireland and Scotland.   She was previously based at the Belfast Mays Meadows site and worked as a Team manager inside the mortgage division. “I believe in being available to support and improve the working lives of our members and being a specific point of contact for members in contact sites and branches in Scotland and Northern Ireland”

Debbie Croucher, Senior Consultant Debbie Croucher, Senior Consultant
Debbie is a full-time consultant and focuses her time on casework and supporting business areas primarily based in Branch and the South of England.

Debbie was first introduced to banking in 1991 when with two small children she worked part-time on the counter working for Bradford & Bingley. With the passing of years, Debbie obtained full accreditation as a Mortgage & Financial Planning Advisor. Following integration into Santander Debbie supported a pilot in Triton Square for the Mortgage division followed by several years as a Branch Manager.

In December 2012 Debbie Joined Advances’ senior team as a full-time consultant after several years as a local rep. Debbies philosophy in life is to treat others as she would like to be treated herself, and to this day she finds this makes a difference in what can be challenging and difficult circumstances.

Her philosophy is to focus on conflict resolution bringing skills as a trained mediator following accreditation by ACAS and as a trained counsellor with similar qualifications.  Her Days consist of attending various meetings and giving Advance and Counsel to our members. So often these will be stressful for our members who may be involved in a disciplinary, grievance or probation hearing or even an informal meeting where differences have occurred.

Debbie is also a trained mediator and is brings these skills to her role in Advance.

Her objective is to ensure people are treated with dignity in a fair and personal way using calmness and diplomacy without compromising.

Debbie has a mature son and daughter and two beautiful granddaughters and loves spending time with her family who remain very important to her.

Dan Allsopp, Advance Consultant & National Lead on Recruitment Dan Allsopp, Advance Consultant & National Lead on Recruitment
Dan is our National lead on Recruitment, He makes sure Advances Proposition grows. This means he is pivotal and the instrumental driving force in Advance union's efforts to grow our members and ensure we retain our members. Dan does not stop at making sure our member's voices are heard!

Dan has experience as a workplace representative for several years and became the National Executive Committee member for the Homes division in 2017. He joined Linda’s team to bring focus to our efforts and oversight in this area. While every single representative contributes to ensuring Advance continues to thrive.

Dan has worked for Santander for many years, based the in mortgage sales teams.

He also supports the consultants with casework and helps members with work-related concerns. Also he is our Main Lead National Recruitment offer nationally.

Out of work, Dan loves spending time with his family and walking his king Charles Cavalier, Cooper. Also, he loves his football and is a keen Man United Supporter.

Advance Office and Helpline team

Abbie McCarthy Abbie McCarthy
Abbie is part of the Advance Union helpline team and the personal assistant to Linda Rolph and the leadership team. She coordinates meetings and agendas ansupportsng our wider workplace reps when Advance Union meets their Senior Management.

Abbie works as part of the office team.  She helps coordinate meetings between Advance and the Bank.  In addition, she coordinates all minutes, and agendas and supports attendees by ensuring relevant collective records are kept.

“The thing I like most about my role is that I feel that I am making a real difference in the working lives of our members.  That itself brings its reward.”

Irene Felgate Irene Felgate
Irene is part of the helpline team as well as the Grievance and Disciplinary Administrator for Advance, who deals with all aspects of casework, from the opening of a case file to the closure and everything this entails.

Irene works on the helpline, assisting members with general queries by telephone and email.  Irene has been with Advance for over 16 years and has a comprehensive understanding of the role.  She has a background in Therapeutics which brings a whole new dimension to the team.


Mary Bull Mary Bull
Mary is part of the helpline team as well as our key membership administrator. She helps members with queries about their membership and advice on work-related issues. She has worked for Advance for several years and before this worked for Santander.

She deals with direct debits, payments and membership applications.  The central part of her role, however, is to work on the helpline giving advice and support to Members.

She says she loves her job because she is helping people in difficult situations in their working environment.

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Take the best decision in your career and join us today. At £6.70 per month, we are great value for our members. When you join Advance, you’re joining more than just a union – a community with thousands of members across multiple sites and branches. Together, we’re a loud voice championing the things that matter to you at work.