Head of the Governance Group - Roger Griffith
Roger is a social entrepreneur, lecturer, and engaged in several community and social action projects. He was the Executive Chair for 11 years at Ujima Radio, where he is also a broadcaster. He contributes to Bristol 24/7 and is a film curator with the Come the Revolution collective at Bristol Watershed. In 2018, Roger was awarded the Lord Mayor’s Medal for his community and voluntary work on race equality. He was recently awarded an MBE.
Gill Kirk - Lyric Communications
Gill is an experienced writer and strategic communications director for various organisations such as Arts Council England, Royal Shakespeare Company, and Bristol Old Vic. She founded Lyric Communications, a strategic communications consultancy, in 2005. Gill has previously worked in the diversity, access, and equality sectors.
Nick Sorenson - Bath Spa University
Dr Nick Sorenson was a senior lecturer at Bath Spa University who contributed to the original Paper Nations bid in 2015. He is now a research fellow focused on action research and case study methodologies. A member of the Trowbridge Poetry Stanza group, Nick is passionate about creating an inclusive writing ecology.
Creative Advisory Group
Chair of the Creative Advisory Group - Dr Andy Salmon
Across his career, Andy has focused on working with under-represented students. After gaining his PhD in Modernist Literature, Andy has spent more than 20 years working in schools, universities, and educational and outreach programmes for young people. As pro-vice Chancellor of Bath Spa, his role focuses on innovation in applied arts, humanities, and social sciences. He brings this expertise to his work leading the Creative Advisory Group.
Helen Chaloner is Chief Executive of Literature Works, the regional literature development agency for south west England. She worked as a publishing PR in London before moving to Devon and becoming National Director of Arvon, which is known for its residential creative writing courses. From there she went to Farms for City Children, a charity connecting inner city school children to the countryside through a week on a working farm. Helen is principal short story reader for the Bridport Prize. She lives in West Devon on the northern edge of Dartmoor.
Sarah was a secondary English teacher for twenty years, with a passion for teaching creative writing. As Education Manager for Cheltenham Festivals, she is part of a team that delivers innovative creative learning opportunities for young people of all backgrounds.
Vanessa is a Senior Lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Winchester.
She has a PhD in Creative Writing which focused on young adult fiction. Her middle-grade novel, Flight, was published by Firefly Press in August 2018. She is particularly interested in creative practice, diversity and social networking for authors. Vanessa is one of the judges for the annual GEA/Quarto Diversity Award. She also mentored Kathryn L Kettle who was a 2018 Undiscovered Voice and now has a three-book deal with Stripes Publishing, having been signed up by Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency.
Dr Penny Hay FRSA, FHEA is an artist and educator, Research Fellow, Centre for Cultural and Creative Industries; Senior Lecturer in Arts Education, School of Education, Bath Spa University, and Director of Research, House of Imagination (formerly 5x5x5=creativity). Signature projects include School Without Walls, House of Imagination and Forest of Imagination. Penny’s doctoral research focused on how we support children’s learning identity as artists. Penny is a member of the RSA Innovative Education Network, Crafts Council Learning Advisory Group, Visiting Lecturer at Plymouth College of Art, and Co-Investigator on the AHRC Global Challenges Research project ‘Rethinking Waste’ in Mumbai.
Dionne is a story editor, having begun her career in television, writing editing and producing documentary programming. She has been a literary editor for the past 10 years, working with authors of both fiction and narrative non-fiction worldwide. She also works as a brand editor for companies in the tech and retail sectors, and as a communications strategist for political candidates. She has been involved with Paper Nations as writer/editor since its inception and founded the Save Bath Library campaign which succeeded in protecting the city’s central library from closure.
Patricia is a Member of the Cultural Services Committee at Falmouth Town Council and has worked as an adult education tutor. She is passionate about encouraging people to write for wellbeing and keen to see more opportunities in Falmouth for people to write creatively.
Mary Morris is the director of Totleigh Barton, the Arvon Foundation’s creative writing centre in Devon. Prior to this she worked in publishing, beginning her career at Bloomsbury in 2003. She went on to manage the general list at Gerald Duckworth, later moving to the British Museum Press, where she developed exhibition titles, and finally to Faber & Faber, where she worked as a fiction editor.
Gill founded Inkpots Writing Workshops in Sussex in 2013. Inkpots groups offer creative writing support to young people aged 10 – 16 years, with emphasis on the wellbeing aspect of the creative process. Gill is also a publications editor and writer of many years’ experience.
Alison is a writer and creativity coach based in Bristol. She set up WriteClub in 2016 and runs regular creative writing workshops, masterclasses and open mic nights. She also offers one-to-one mentoring and works with emerging and established writers.
She writes prose fiction and has been published in various magazines and anthologies. Her work has been listed in several prestigious competitions, including the Bath Short Story Award, the Mslexia New Novel Prize and the Bridport Prize for First Novels. She is one of 20 emerging writers on the Hay Festival Writers at Work scheme and has recently taken part in a project development lab with National Theatre Wales.
Judith is a Lecturer at Bath Spa University; previously Head of Programming at Bath Festivals, a Literature Advisor for the British Council, and Programming Manager for Cheltenham Literature Festival. She has experience of, and keen interest in exploring the lack of diversity in the arts and publishing.
Joe Bibby is Arvon’s Head of Learning, overseeing an annual programme of residential creative writing courses for schools, groups and individuals. The courses are tutored by professional authors, and participants include children, young people and adults, including many from the most marginalised communities in the UK. Partnership courses are tailored to the needs of the group, and Arvon aims to help everyone to find their voice through writing.