Tamworth Arts Centre and Assembly Rooms
Following graduation at Dartington College of Arts I answered an advert in the Guardian: “Juggler Required.” After my years in the company of Haggis McLeod and Sean Bridges, it immediately caught my eye. I became Director of Tamworth Arts Centre and Assembly Rooms in October 1994.
- Employed by Tamworth Borough Council Grade 6
- I took over the Arts Centre when it was at a ten year low and developed it over three years, maximising use of the building; the number of users and income in both buildings doubled in one year.
- I computerised all the administrative, marketing and financial procedures for both buildings on an LC475 and a brand new PowerMac 6100.
- I developed on a continuous basis the Arts Policy for both buildings, and oversaw and specified a long-running programme of refurbishment and upgrading of the facilities and the general appearance of each venue.
- I created, programmed, and managed varied and integrated quarterly Events Seasons including mini-seasons and festivals, outdoor events, and schools projects.
- I was Creator and Director of Tamworth Children’s Festival, and co-director of Tamworth Free Festival, both based in the Tamworth Castle Pleasure Grounds, ’95, ’96, and ’97.
- I was a member of ‘Tamworth Sculpture Trail’ Commissioning Committee
- I managed a team of professional staff and a volunteer support group
- I managed budgets for both venues totalling more than £250,000, including preparing business plans for forthcoming financial years for review by Leisure Services Committee of Councillors
- I created and directed public relations and marketing strategies for both venues
- I desk top published the bulk of the publicity and information material on computer, including copy-writing, graphics creation & photo-manipulation, and pre-press preparations & proofing, using Photoshop, Freehand and PageMaker.
- I became familiarised with Local Authority procedures and maintained all the relevant licenses, including being Licensee for the premises for several years
- I undertook Arts Development projects for local people on a one-to-one and group basis e.g. I successfully developed a keen amateur writer through to a publishing contract with a London publisher, and started up a Writers Group in the Arts Centre. I welcomed a local artist to be ‘in residence’ and boosted confidence toward a major exhibition and enviromental sculpture work in the area and beyond; I created a Community Choir; I generated/facilitated and produced a youth oriented art/club scene: ‘ClubFunk’ which I ran bi-monthly throughout my three years tenure.
- I was director of Four Quarters Production Co.’s summer community arts events
- Following setting up Tamworth’s “Surf Shop” in May 1995 (among the first ever cybercafes in the UK) I ran Internet Demonstrations for Council Officers, as well as creating and maintaining Tamworth Borough Council’s first Web Site