Creative UK welcomes new UK Council Members

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Creative UK is thrilled to announce a series of new members joining its UK Council. 

The UK Council, who are existing members of Creative UK, is an advisory body of cultural and creative professionals who play an integral role in informing the work that we do as an organisation. The Council is influential in shaping our impact priorities – to connect creative people, invest in creative businesses, and support creative ideas while championing the power and value of the Creative Industries – steering policy positions, sharing crucial insights from across industry and the UK, and championing the perspectives of its membership to engender the best possible conditions for the growth and success of the Cultural and Creative Industries.  

Creative UK Council members represent the very breadth of our industries, including organisations big and small, a full spectrum of sub-sectors, freelancers, creative practitioners and education providers. They listen and communicate the concerns and ideas of their communities so Creative UK can enact change across industry and across regions. 


Welcome to the UK Council’s newest members: 

Claire Whitaker CBE, CEO, Southampton Forward 

Charlotte Nicol, Associate Dean EKE, Teesside University 

Lucy Kennedy, Chief Executive, Saturday Club Trust 

Elaine Bedell, CEO, Southbank Centre 

Jon Williams, Founder & CEO, The Liberty Guild 

Tamzyn Smith, CEO, Cornwall Museums Partnership 

Frances Corner, Warden, Goldsmiths, University of London 

Robert Douglas, Co-Founder and Executive Producer, Hatch Films 

Dan Wood, Chief Strategy Officer & Acting Co-CEO, UKIE 

Tom Wrathmell, Director, Across the UK Initiative, BBC 

Fiona Armstrong-Gibbs, Chair and Director, Baltic Creative CIC, Baltic Triangle Area CIC 

Deirdre Robb, CEO, Belfast Exposed 

Rachel Baynton, Associate Professor (at UoL) / Co-artistic Director (at Proto-type), University of Lincoln School of Creative Arts / Proto-type 

Matias Shortcook, Centre Principal for Chelsea Centre for Creative Industries & Vice Principal for Innovation, Morley College London 

Kate Varah, Executive Director, National Theatre 

Christopher Onderstall, Senior Partner, Head of People and Business Transformation, FleishmanHillard 

Zaylie-Dawn Wilson, Head of Creative Partnerships, Birmingham Hippodrome 

Paul Fieldsend-Danks, Vice-Chancellor, Arts University Plymouth 

Mafalda Dâmaso, Researcher and Independent Consultant 

Claire Malcolm MBE, CEO, New Writing North 

Dan Tsu, CEO & Creative Director, Lyrix Organix 

Sandra Booth, Director of Policy and External Relations, Council for Higher Education in Art and Design CHEAD 

Caroline Parkinson, Director of Creative, Edinburgh Futures Institute 

Graham Webb, Managing Director, 4Wood TV & Film 

Fahmida Choudbury, CEO, Punch Records

Connor Crossland, UK Corporate Affairs Manager, Ubisoft


When asked about their thoughts on joining the UK Council, Francis Corner (Warden, Goldsmiths University) said: “The Creative Industries in the UK already achieve incredible things – and it has so much potential for more. For me, it’s all about striving to build and support a truly diverse creative environment and creating the conditions the next generation need in order to flourish. Collaborating across sectors, specialisms and communities through organisations like Creative UK has to be at the heart of this.” 


Graham Webb (Managing Director, 4Wood TV & Film Construction) said: “It is a critical time for the UK Creative Industries. Almost every sector is facing challenges; be it funding, inflationary pressures or the evolution of how the public access their work. This makes the role of the Creative UK Council more critical than ever. With every part of the creative industry standing together to advocate for our vital contribution to UK culture, we are paving the way for a bright future. 

That is why I wanted to be a part of it. To ensure that creativity continues to be expressed and thrive for the benefit of everyone.” 


Elaine Bedell (CEO, Southbank Centre) commented: “Being a member of the UK Council offers us the opportunity to contribute to the vital debates around the creative industry, which contributes an incredible return to the UK economy – largely through its extraordinary creative capital. The UK has some of the very best writers, performers, artists and musicians in the world, and the Arts sector in developing and platforming much of this talent, plays a crucial role in the global success of the Creative Industries.” 


Claire Malcolm MBE (CEO, New Writing North) said: “The writing industries are the source art form for so many of the Creative Industries – underpinning publishing, film, TV and audio, but they are often invisible to the eye in policy debates and funding priorities. By joining Creative UK I hope to advocate for writers and writing and to represent the impactful and important work happening in this part of the sector in the North.” 


Caroline Parkinson (Director of Creative, Edinburgh Futures Institute) commented: “The value of being part of Creative UK is the platform it provides to share our evidence and make policy proposals to the policymakers to enhance the support for the creative and cultural sector. As a creative advocate in Scotland the opportunity to feed in Scottish specific perspectives, or share knowledge on initiatives in Scotland, and to network with the Creative UK members across the UK, is incredibly valuable.” 


Meet our complete UK Council here. 

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