About Us


The Friends of Kingston Hospital was formed in 1954 with the aim of improving the everyday life of both patients and staff and we are always keen to provide those items which fall outside normal NHS budgets.

The Friends support to the staff and patients of Kingston Hospital has been provided through the generosity of its members, the public, and through Legacies. During the past ten years the Friends have donated half a million pounds to various projects, ranging in cost from a few hundred to several thousand pounds. We try to fund items that generally fall outside the remit of usual hospital purchases, and these have recently included a number of items to help Dementia patients particularly activity based items such as puzzles, jigsaws and books. We have also donated £25,000 directly to the hospital’s Dementia appeal. In addition to care of the elderly we have also donated to Main Theatres a Warming cupboard used to provide each patient entering Main Theatres with a warm blanket to make them feel more comfortable. Smaller items have included a television for A&E Paediatrics.

Our Team

Geoff Austin

Geoff Austin


Geoff has lived in KIngston for about 30 years. His career was spent working for the Social Services Departments of several London Boroughs. Within a few months of retiring he was elected as a Councillor on Kingston Council. During his twelve years as a Councillor, Geoff was twice Deputy Mayor and once Mayor (2016). He is now an Alderman of the Borough. As well as Chairman of the Friends, Geoff is Treasurer of Kingston Hospital Radio, on which he presents a weekly show on Sundays. He is also involved with other local charities, and is a Vice President of both Kingston & New Malden Arthritis Care, and the Surbiton Club for the Blind.
In the rest of his spare time Geoff takes a keen interest in sport. In his younger days he played both Rugby and Cricket, and he is now a Patron of our local football club Kingstonian F.C. He also loves folk music, and is lead vocalist with a small folk band.
Geoff’s claim to fame is that he once ran a two mile Fun Run in aid of Mencap, and on crossing the finish line declared that there was no ‘fun’ in running, and he would never take part in a run again – and he hasn’t!

Sheila Austin

Sheila Austin

Vice Chairman

Sheila has lived in South-West London all her life, and has been a member of the Friends Committee for almost 20 years. Hers was a very varied career, which included at times, selling encyclopedias to American servicemen stationed in Germany, and acting as a P.A. to a millionaire. Her career was cut short when she suffered a stroke in 1996, which left her partially sighted. Undeterred, she began fundraising for various charities. She once abseiled down the tower at Kingston University in aid of the R.N.I.B., is often seen with a collecting tin for Momentum Childrens Charity, and has sold thousands of Christmas cards and raffle tickets in aid of the Friends.
Sheila’s claim to fame is that she once had her ankle nipped by one of the Queen’s corgis whilst on a visit to Buckingham Palace.

Serge Lourie

Serge Lourie

Vice Chairman

Former leader of Richmond Council and former Chairman of the Friends Serge has been associated with Kingston Hospital and the Friends for over twenty years in a number of capacities including the Hospital’s Charitable Funds Committee.
Barry Couling

Barry Couling


Treasurer since 2000 Barry was also part of the team who raised funds to help build the Sir William Rous Unit through the Kingston Hospital Cancer Appeal.
Margaret Bourner

Margaret Bourner


Margaret has been a stalwart of the Friends for thirty years serving virtually the whole of that time as Secretary and heavily involved in the first Scanner appeal for the Hosptial.

The Friends is affiliated to “Attend”, formerly the National League of Hospital Friends.  The President is the The Worshipful the Mayor of the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames

Contact Us

About The Charity

Together with Kingston hospital Radio, the Friends have almost 50 unpaid volunteers who raise funds in many ways and in the last 10 years, have contributed more than £500,000 to many excellent Hospital projects.


The Friends of Kingston Hospital
Kingston Hospital
Galsworthy Road
Kingston Upon Thames KT2 7QB
TEL: 020 8974 5474


To find out more please contact.
Barry Couling our Treasurer.