Our Team

We carefully select our mentors based on their qualifications, experience and suitability, in order to ensure we have the right individuals to meet the diverse range of needs we encounter.

Each member of staff brings an invaluable set of skills to help create the right environment for our young people to engage and succeed.

Life Shed is committed to continual staff development whilst certifying all staff have the necessary child protection and health & safety training.


    Craig Farr –  Director

    Craig’s enthusiasm to support and positively impact the lives of young people was the driving force behind starting Life Shed. Over a decade of experience within the social care and education industry, Craig’s expertise, commitment to the young people, and above all his ability to bring out the best in everyone, makes him the vital ingredient at Life Shed.

    Previously Manager of an Alternative Education Provision, Mentor Coordinator, and House Manager of two residential care homes in a Special Educational Needs setting, Craig’s experience and proactive approach to every young person is second to none. Continuously facilitating growth and development in the lives of young people, Craig’s innovation and vision furthermore enables Life Shed to grow and fulfil the needs of the younger generation.

    BSc (Hons) Sport, Fitness and Coaching
    NCFE Cache Level 2 Certificate in Understanding Children & Young People’s Mental Health
    FA Level 2 in Coaching Football
    Level 3 Education and Training (PTLLS)
    Level 3 NVQ in Health and Social Care – Children and Young People

    Chloe Walker – Services Manager

    Chloe is a methodical and motivated individual who has worked within the care sector for over the past 11 years. Previous roles have included Residential Support Worker, House Manager, Designated Safeguarding Officer and Deputy Head of Care and holds her NVQ level 5 in Leadership and Management for Residential Childcare.
    She has an excellent understanding of the requirements of the service, audit processes and legislation. She is child centred, approachable and instrumental in the development of the service.

    Level 3 NVQ in Health and Social Care – Children and Young People
    NVQ level 5 Diploma in Leadership and Management for residential care
    Designated Safeguarding Lead

    Tash Dews – Mentor

    Tash has over 15 years of experience supporting young people of all ages in various settings. She has worked in primary and secondary schools as a teaching assistant and then as a pastoral manager coordinating support for young people to enable them to succeed and reach their full potential.

    She is trained as a forest school leader and enjoys sharing her passion for bushcraft and the outdoors with young people. Tash delivered an Alternative Provision Programme for young people that were excluded from school and at risk of criminal exploitation.

    Tash is an energetic and enthusiastic individual who strives to build positive relationships with the young people she supports. She will adapt her approach to meet their individual needs to ensure they gain as much as possible from working together.

    OCN Forest School Leader Level 3
    NVQ 2 Supporting teaching and Learning
    Youth services Training

    David Clarke – Mentor & Tutor

    Dave has over twenty years’ experience teaching science, maths, geography and outdoor education in special school settings (SEMH, ASD and LAC). In addition, he spent two years in the residential care setting working with extremely vulnerable children, mainly in the outdoor environment.

    Dave spent over three years living and teaching in Botswana, and it is here that he developed a real passion for bushcraft and was lucky enough to hone his survival skills crossing both the Kalahari and Namib deserts.

    He believes that a critical aspect of this work at Life Shed is building positive relationships, based on mutual respect and trust. For him the needs of the child are paramount. In a previous role he spent 5 years as a behaviour management, de-escalation, control and restraint instructor where de-escalation was always his focus and end goal.

    Post Graduate Certificate in Education, Science in the Environment.
    BSc (Hons) Geology
    Mountain Bike instructor
    Paddlesport Instructor
    Hill and Moorland Leader
    First Aid Instructor
    Member of the Institute of Outdoor Learning (IOL) (Special interest groups, bushcraft and outdoor learning)
    Training to become a bushcraft leader (ongoing)

    Demi Whitrick – Mentor

    Demi is  versatile and adaptable individual who brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to Life Shed through her previous roles within social care and education. She has supported young people with a range of needs in order for them to achieve and be successful.

    Demi has an enthusiastic and creative approach in supporting young people, her dedication and caring personality combined with her experience and knowledge allow Demi to positively impact young people at Life Shed.

    Level 3 NVQ in Health and Social care – Children & Young People
    Level 3 NVQ in Health and Social care – Adults

    Tracy Summerton – Mentor

    Tracy’s experience comes from many years working in different educational and community settings in and outside of the classroom. Working with Shropshire Home Educators, Youth Services and Arts organisations to provide positive, informal learning experiences to promote confidence and self esteem.
    Her focus is to be a caring and supportive mentor for young people, and to inspire a love for lifelong learning

    Foundation Art
    BA degree 3 D Design, Silversmithing and Metalwork.
    OCN level 1 Arts & Crafts for Children & Young People
    PTLLS Cert /PG Cert Post Compulsory Education & Training
    Level 3 Forest School Practitioner Training
    OCN level 2 Youth Work Practice
    OCN level 3 Youth work training
    Tutor, 3 D Design and Jewellery & Metal, Shrewsbury School of Art
    Home educator
    Community Artist, Hive, Severnside Housing, Youth Services, Residential Homes, Schools
    Youth Support worker, Youth Clubs, Shropshire Youth Association
    After School Club Leader, Mount Pleasant School, SBMAT
    Youth Support worker SEND, Youth Clubs, Shropshire Council
    Youth Support Worker, Youth Clubs & Alternative Curriculum, Shrewsbury Town Council

    Trudi Warren – Forest School instructor

    Trudi is a highly experienced GCSE level teacher and Bushcraft Instructor, specialising in educating young people with learning disabilities and challenging behaviors.

    She was a leader in establishing Bushcraft lessons in her previous education setting, assessing young people’s skills and engaging students in an alternative form of education.

    A professional individual who brings a calming influence to her teaching.

    Forest School Revalidation Course, CPD, Shropshire Council
    ITC Level 3 Award in Outdoor First Aid
    Level 1 Bushcraft Instructors Course, Cruckton Hall School
    Level 3 NVQ Teaching Assistant
    NOCN Level 3 Forest School Practitioner

    Taran Lyth – Mentor

    Taran has completed a Level 3 in Outdoor Education Studies and is currently in the final year of his Higher National Diploma (HND) in Outdoor Leadership. During this time he has undertaken work experience placements in specialist settings for pupils with social, emotional, and mental health difficulties which is where he realised that he wanted to make a difference to young people who were finding mainstream school placements difficult.

    Taran has always had an interest in special educational needs and has enjoyed supporting young people at an Outdoor Adventure Centre in his late teens, prior to becoming a Lifeguard at a local leisure centre and then in his latest role as physical education coach supporting young people in mainstream schools.

    Taran is a qualified Level 2 Mountain Bike Instructor. He has taken part in training for both his paddle boarding and kayak instructing as well as his Mountain Leader Award. Taran is keen to pass on his passion for the outdoors and build positive relationships with young people to enable them to be as successful as they can be.

    Level 2 Mountain Bike Instructor
    Level 3 Outdoor First Aid
    Level 3 Diploma in Outdoor Education Studies

    Helena Whitfield – Mentor

    Helena’s military background brings a unique aspect to Life Shed. Her 8 years of service in the Royal Navy has kitted her out with the experiences, skills and mindset to assist her with mentoring young people of all needs.

    An ambitious individual with a passion to mentor young people with a positive and supportive approach. She endeavours to bring the best out of people, motivating them and encouraging them to achieve their goals. She can adapt to the needs of the young person and assist them on their journey whilst at Life Shed.

    She believes a ‘Can Do’ attitude can help achieve the smallest of goals, and this is something she promotes throughout her sessions.

    A-Level – Psychology
    Mental Health First Aider

    Kelvin Sirrel – mentor

    Kelvin comes from a military background having served in the Royal Navy since the age of 16 from 1981 to 1990 , firstly as a cook and later a Physical Training Instructor.

    Kelvin will openly discuss he to was not a attentive student and struggled in the system but through drive and self motivation made a successful career path . He has come to us via another mentor program and brings with him a life skill set and an ability to inspire and motivate learners of all ages.

    His students can learn basic car maintenance skills, garden maintenance, various sporting skills and of course culinary skills.

    Kelvin says “ I thrive on the challenges that each young student brings and seeing them blossom and achieve. If each student I have takes a little bit of our days into a better future then I become fulfilled”.

    Shelley Dovey- Mentor

    Shelley has over 20 years’ experience in working within the childcare sector. Her previous roles have included residential house manager, designated safeguarding lead and groups operations manager for children’s services.

    Shelley has an excellent understanding of the requirements for her mentoring role, she is enthusiastic, approachable and creative in delivering a child centred approach and has a diverse set of skills that will help the young people to flourish and progress.

    NVQ level 3 in Health and Social care- Children and young people
    NVQ level 4 Registered Managers Award
    NVQ level 7 Strategic Leadership and Management

    Stuart Zlotowitz – mentor

    Stuart is a father of 3 teenagers and has had over 25 years of experience working with children and young people. This has come through working for a Local Authority Play Service and Youth Service; in a variety of outdoor education settings with different projects and most recently with children of Looked After status in a residential setting.

    Stuart enjoys using the natural world as a therapeutic setting for building positive relationships with young people and breaking down barriers as well as helping to increase their self – confidence. He has woodland management experience and a wealth of practical wood working skills that he is keen to draw upon when working as a Mentor.

    Forest School Level 3
    Carpentry and joinery Level 1
    DIDAC woodwork machinery trainers certificate
    Chainsaw certificate
    Paediatric First Aid
    Mental Health First Aid

    Ben Marston – Mentor

    Ben has completed Level 3 in Outdoor Education Studies and also completed a higher national diploma (HND) in outdoor leadership. During his time on the courses, he has done a lot of work experience in primary and secondary schools. Focusing on working in the PE department and working with all ages. Which helped him realise that he wanted to work with children to support them physically and mentally.
    Ben has always had an interest in working with children either in schools or in the outdoor industry, which helped him make the decision to go gain further experience at Camp America, where he taught children of all ages how to learn how to ride mountain bikes but also improve their personal skills.
    Ben is a qualified Level 2 Mountain bike instructor. He was taken part in his mountain leader training and also water sports (kayaking, paddle boarding, kayaking) training. Ben wants to use all his skills in the outdoors to help improve skills of the younger generation and also help them take the correct pathways to success.

    Level 2 mountain bike instructor
    Level 3 outdoor first aid
    Level 3 diploma in outdoor education studies
    Level 4 and 5 higher national diploma in outdoor education

    Drew Baumgartner- Mentor

    Drew joins the Life Shed team from the United States where he has a background in outdoor education and has worked with young people and adults in both a classroom and wilderness settings across the world.

    He has worked in schools as a Teacher’s Assistant to aid special education students with developmental and emotional needs at the primary and secondary level who find success in small group settings. His role was to aid students with social and emotional difficulties to give them the skills to succeed in the classroom and with life skills.

    Drew has many years experience working as an adventure guide and trip leader with people of all ages and experiences in outdoor pursuits. Some of the places he has lead adventures are the Caribbean, Grand Canyon, and parts of Europe to name a few. He has lead a wide range of activities all the while ensuring a fun, exciting, educational, and safe experience.

    He plans to bring his passion for nature, sports, travel, volunteering, education to the young people of Shropshire while creating positive relationships and empowering them to gain the skills and confidence to succeed in all aspects of life.

    Degree in Adventure Education and Communion from Prescott College in Prescott, Arizona USA
    First Aid Certified

    Where to find us

    The Life Shed
    Unit 5-6, The Stables, 
    Sansaw Business Park, Hadnall,
    Shrewsbury SY4 4AS

    VAT registration number 392272191

    Contact us

    Chloe Walker, Services Manager – 07359432633
    Craig Farr, Life Shed Director – 07368883534


    © LIFE SHED (established 2019)