The fundamental basis for the work I undertake and enjoy is that I love making heritage accessible to the widest possible audiences through telling the stories of people and places in an engaging way.  This can be by embedding museums and heritage sites into their communities or enabling communities to engage with their heritage.

Key interests:

  • Assessing, monitoring and mentoring National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF) funded projects in museums, art galleries, parks, churches and communities to encourage good practice and help projects to maximise their potential and impact as an Expert Advisor for NLHF.
  • Researching and writing Activity Plans, Business Plans and applications for NLHF funded projects in collaboration with applicants from pre-application to Delivery Phase.
  • Working as a Mentor and Critical Friend with heritage organisations and on partnership and community projects.
  • Working with communities to discover and interpret the story of British immigration and the stories of marginalised people in our society.
  • Project managing cultural heritage and community engagement projects.
  • Organising and delivering training.

Key Skills and Specialisms:

  • Mentoring a broad range of community based organisations to develop and deliver heritage-based projects
  • Comprehensive experience of developing all areas of successful Museums from conception to long term sustainability.
  • Broad understanding and experience of researching and delivering best practice in a variety of areas within the Parks and Nature Reserves, Churches, Museums, Libraries and Archives sectors.
  • Wide-ranging experience of developing and delivering exhibitions, events and education programmes that are relevant to and created with diverse or targeted audiences.
  • Extensive experience of researching and writing NLHF applications and supporting documents for projects from under £10,000 to £10million.
  • Extensive experience of assessing, monitoring and mentoring NLHF Applications.
  • Wide-ranging experience of developing and delivering projects with non-traditional museum audiences, including migrant workers, Looked After Children, adults with severe physical and learning disabilities, through the process of consultation.
  • Excellent communication and presentation skills.

Selected Professional Experience as a Consultant

National Lottery Heritage Fund

December 2004 – present: National Directory of Expert Advisors for the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF) – assessing NLHF applications and mentoring and monitoring about forty successful projects to date; including National Maritime Museum, New Bolsover Village, Orchards East, Kettle’s Yard,  St John’s Church in Hackney, George Padmore Institute, Gressenhall Museum, Dowsby Village Hall, Bishopsgate Institute, Cambourne Local History Society, Duxford Imperial War Museum, Royal Hussars Museum, National Trust,  Farnham Museum and Women’s Library, to name a few…  This work has involved working with the organisations to stretch them into best practice for their project, to encourage confidence in their own abilities and skills, to monitor financial processes, encourage communications between organisations and to support staff at times when there may be considerable change.

January 2018 – August 2018 and April 2020 to present: Working as part of Julia Holberry Associates to create a clear vision for the redisplay of Ipswich Museum and to write the Round 1 NLHF application and draft Activity Plan and Interpretation Plan.  Researching and writing Round 2 Activity Plan.

April 2020 to present: Working as part of Julia Holberry Associates to develop an Audience Development Strategy and Interpretation Strategy for Highgate Cemetery to feed into a Round1 NLHF application.

January 2019 – July 2019: working as part of Julia Holberry Associates to create community embedded Activity Plan for Abney Park Cemetery.

October 2017 – February 2018: Researching and writing the Activity Plan for Norfolk Museums Service Kick the Dust NLHF application targeted at 11 – 25 year olds, targeted at young homeless people and Looked After Children.

November 2016 – November 2017: Researching and writing the NLHF Activity Plan for the redevelopment of the Suffolk Record Offices including a new building run collaboration with the University of Suffolk.  The key elements of this plan is developing traineeships appropriate for 16 plus to encourage diversification in the archive workforce.

Critical Friend/ Mentor/ Institutional Change

July 2020 to October 2020: Working with Anna Salaman to mentor the Electoral Commission to develop a Qualitative Evaluation Framework for educational resources for 14 – 18 year old’s in Scotland and Wales.

July 2019 ongoing: Working with Anna Salaman as Community Engagement Mentors for Temple Newsam House and Gardens to think about community engagement and how the diverse site can be developed for the future.

May 2019 ongoing: Project Monitor for Wellcome for their Inspiring Science Fund for Dundee Science Centre to work with them to use best practice for community engagement in the Science Centre.

March 2020 – August 2020: Options Appraisal for Grimsby Fishing Heritage Centre.  Developing an Options Appraisal on community engagement and interpretation in consultation with the local community.

January 2019 ongoing until June 2022: Institutional Change Evaluator with Anna Salaman looking at how Norfolk Museums Service is responding to their NLHF Kick the Dust project and changing across their museums to be more inclusive of young people – from the front of house to the board room.

September 2018 ongoing: NLHF appointed mentor for the British Council’s ‘Our Shared Cultural Heritage’ project with young people from South Asian heritage.

January 2017 – July 2018: NLHF appointed mentor for St Augustine’s Shrine, Ramsgate to help manage the delivery of the Activity Plan.

February 2015 – October 2019: NLHF appointed mentor commissioned to push the National Maritime Museum through Institutional Change to become more community focused.

November 2009 –November 2012: Working with Hackney Museum as a Critical Friend to develop an innovative Stage 1 and Stage 2 NLHF bid about the impact of the Olympics on Hackney.  Throughout the delivery of the project I worked to challenge their practices and ensure the overall project was both meeting the stated aims but also pushing boundaries about how museums can work with their local communities.

Community heritage development

July 2019 ongoing: Working with Adddenbrookes Hospital to develop a heritage based community engagement project for the hospital staff and patients and the wider community.

September 2014 – September 2019: Mentor and project delivery for Headway Cambridgeshire, a charity working with people with brain injuries, to successfully fundraise and deliver two heritage based projects that engage their service users, staff, volunteers and wider public.

December 2011 – December 2016: NLHF appointed Monitor for Eighth in the East Community Interest Company to deliver community engagement about the American 8th Airforce in the East of England in World War 2.  A project that has shown how social enterprises can work with museums to develop innovative projects and deliver directly to local communities.

September 2010 – May 2012: At Norwich Museum and Art Gallery I developed and delivered a number of art based projects with young adults with severe physical and / or learning disabilities and also an environment and recording project with Looked After Children.

August 2007 – March 2009: ‘Museum Links’ and ‘Just Like My Mother Used to Make…’  – Developed two community museum interpretation projects with migrant workers and local people in museums in Lincolnshire. As a result I organized and delivered a conference on ‘Engaging Migrant Workers Through Museums’.

 Huguenot Museum: May 2011 – May 2015

I was the Internal Project Manager for the development of the Huguenot Museum from May 2012 until the handover with the Director was completed in November 2014.  The Huguenot Museum is the first museum about the Huguenots in Britain and opened May 2015.

In May to June 2011 I worked with the original Project Manager to deliver teacher and community consultations about the development of the Huguenot Museum for the Stage 1 NLHF Bid, including developing the strategy for the purpose, content and target audiences for the Huguenot Museum.  I took over as Internal Project Manager of the Huguenot Museum after the Stage 1 NLHF bid was submitted and successfully project managed the Stage 2 NLHF Your Heritage bid, which resulted in a grant of £1.2 million being awarded in March 2014.  This included working with the Directors of the French Hospital, the parent body, to create a strategy for the museum to ensure that it will be financially viable and relevant to the target audiences strategized during the development of the Stage 1 NLHF bid.  I was responsible for writing the Stage 2 NLHF bid, managing consultants, developing and writing the Business Plan, liaising with NLHF and the French Hospital Board to ensure that the final Museum will be to the highest quality to achieve Arts Council England (ACE) Accreditation.

After receiving the Stage 2 NLHF grant I appointed the Director and Learning Officer, sourced objects to tell the story where the French Hospital’s collection was lacking, managed consultants to deliver the building works, exhibition and conservation of the collection, developed and delivered a digital media strategy, and project managed all elements of the delivery of the Huguenot Museum.  I worked with the French Hospital Directors and the Fundraising Manager to target high net value individuals to raise the remaining £3.8 million to cover the Huguenot Museum’s endowment, mortgage and the alms houses which are part of the development.

Professional experience employed in museums

April 2004 – October 2004: Interim Head of Hackney Museum

Restructuring, fundraising and appointing new staff; managing the day- to- day running of the museum and the relationship with Hackney Borough Council.

November 1998 – April 2004: Community Education Manager for Hackney Museum Service

As a member of a small team, of four people, I conceived, developed and realised the redisplay of Hackney Museum.  It has since been held up as at the forefront of museums with successful community engagement, with the demographic of the audience reflecting the demographic of the London Borough of Hackney.

January 1996 – November 1998: Education Officer at North Herts Museum Service

October 1994 – January 1996: Education Assistant at Northampton Museums

January 1994 – October 1994: Contracted Education Officer at Herbert Art Gallery and Museum in Coventry


2017 ongoing: Volunteer for Queen Edith Community Forum fundraising, developing and delivering projects. Also developing and delivering our local community response to Covid 19 and working to support local shielding adults and families through adminstering the Happy to Help line.

2010 – 2018: Member of the Board for the Friends of Rock Road Library.


1994 – 1996 AMA: Associate of the Museums Association

1992 – 1993 MA: Museum Studies; University of Leicester

1988 – 1991 BA (HONS) History of Art; University of Manchester; Class: 2:1

Membership of Professional Bodies and Relevant Experience

  • Associate Member of Museum Association and Group for Education in Museums
  • I have given a number of Keynote speeches, talks and training courses for Universities, GEM, Museum Association and individual Museum Services.

References On request

Background in heritage consultancy