Assessors – The Primary School Yellow Book

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We send a huge thank you to the assessors who kindly gave their time to assess the wonderful entries for The Sawbridgeworth Primary School Yellow Book!

Thank You! Caroline Stevens, Director, Herts Inclusive Theatre (HIT) – Chris Lydamore, Museum Curator, Bishop’s Stortford Museum – Chrissie Richards, Artist – Laura Burns, Centre Director of Courtyard Arts – Rhys Thomas, Theatre Director and East Herts Arts Advisor – Sarah Holmes: Freelance photographer.

Scroll down to learn more about the assessors:

Caroline Stevens is the Director of Herts Inclusive Theatre (HIT), an organisation which uses the arts as a tool for development and well-being. Providing fully accessible arts activities, events, and performances across Hertfordshire. Caroline has been involved with the organisation since 2008, first as Artistic Director and then in 2018 as CEO leading the strategic and operational direction.

Prior to her work with HIT, Caroline worked for several community theatre and dance companies including London Bubble, Trestle, and Srishti as well as The New Theatre Royal and Harrow Arts Centre. Caroline began her career in the arts by attending a youth theatre, her passion for creativity started here and developed through school, performing arts college, and eventually on to completing a degree in community theatre, drama, and media. Caroline spent a lot of her training working with marginalised communities and specialised in working with children with autism and life-debilitating illnesses.

Herts Inclusive Theatre’s programme of activities includes out-of-school and holiday provision for children and young people, drama groups for adults with learning disabilities, projects with groups including mental health problems and domestic abuse survivors, storytelling, immersive events, and inclusion in the workplace training.

Website – Caroline Stevens, Director, Herts Inclusive Theatre (HIT)

I have had a passion for the creative arts all my life – as soon as I was old enough to hold a pencil, I drew the things I came into contact with and used this as a way to explore and understand the world around me. It was this, coupled with a love of history and early technology, that led me to a career in museums. I was therefore delighted to help assess this fabulous selection of young people’s artwork and see them using these same skills in creating their pictures.

Local history museums are all about people; we track how they change over time and share our knowledge of the past to foster a sense of continuity and belonging in our present-day community and, as Curator for Bishop’s Stortford Museum, I still regularly use the skills that were born out of this early process of enquiry to explore ideas, plan talks and work with the collections. While it is impossible to know where these young artists’ life journeys will take them, I am sure that they will find the observational and expressive skills they have shown in their work to be of great personal benefit.

Website – Chris Lydamore, Museum Curator, Bishop’s Stortford Museum

My art practice is about people and their connections to time, place and others. I am interested in how our past, present and future are intertwined, how all of our experiences are stitched together to make us who we are. The process of conceiving work and making it allows me to explore my own identity and memories. I am currently interested in making work that the audience can engage with by handling and re-arranging to create their own composition.

I believe that being creative is an essential part of being human, it is critical to my well-being that I make stuff. Although it is often challenging, making art is stimulating and makes me feel alive. I believe that everyone can and should be creative they just need to find what works for them. Fundamentally for me, making art and expressing my creativity is a way of life not just a way to make a living.

I live in Brightlingsea on the Essex coast but I grew up in East London.

Website – Chrissie Richards

Courtyard Arts is a charity and unique, artistic hub located in Hertford. Comprising of an Art gallery, 2 teaching studios, one artist studio, a shop with work from local artists and makers and a small café.

I have the pleasure of overseeing the day-to-day running of the centre, working with our tutors and team of volunteers to provide a community space for all to enjoy.

Website – Laura Burns, Centre Director of Courtyard Arts

Hertford Theatre is currently undergoing a £24m redevelopment. We will be re-opening again next year with a new 550-seat main theatre, 150-seat new studio theatre, 3 dedicated theatre screens, 2 community rooms and an improved bar kitchen offer. We look forward to seeing you there!

We are:

BOLD – a place for imagination and creative energy.

KIND – a place for tolerance and togetherness.

AWARE – a place for new ideas and growth.

We strive to make a difference by:

Seeking out, producing and promoting relevant work of the highest possible quality. Sharing stories that matter.

Making this work available to all; delivering it with and for, our evolving community. No-one is excluded.

Championing creative engagement, participation and the value of social cohesion. Listening is vital.

Recognising the need to balance creative endeavour with financial responsibility. Creatively commercial.

We aspire to programme work that:

CONNECTS to our established and emerging audiences.

AMPLIFIES the under-represented and hidden voices in our community.

NURTURES new artists and new work.

EXCELS with a commitment to the highest production values.

SURPRISES with creative flare and artistic adventure.

Website – Rhys Thomas, Theatre Director and East Herts Arts Advisor

I have been a photographer of sorts since getting my first camera as a teenager, but the digital era meant it transformed from a hobby to a business. Sarah Stephens Photography began in 2010 whilst volunteering in my local museum and discovering that heritage work was indeed my passion and niche.

I have worked with a number of different heritage organisations over those 12 years. I have been privileged to shoot many amazing objects and works of art as well as running skills workshops for museum staff and volunteers. Some of my work has appeared in exhibition catalogues.

My commercial work varies widely but most recently has included shooting the work of ceramicists, artists, interior designers and children’s books,

With a previous career in training and development the workshops and lessons soon followed and, as creativity has always been an important part of my life which definitely makes me feel better, they are an important part of Sarah Stephens Photography.

Website – Sarah Holmes: Freelance photographer

Head over to enjoy all the schools selections by clicking the image below: