Culture Bridge North East appoints interim programme manager (maternity cover)

18 November 2020

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Clare Elliott as interim programme manager, to cover Mel Burgess’ maternity leave. Clare joins the team this month and will lead the Culture Bridge North East team until Mel returns to work next summer.

Culture Bridge North East supports schools and other organisations to engage children and young people in culture and the arts. Clare said: “I’m passionate about ensuring all children and young people have access to art and culture, and I recognise the importance of this for each individual and the positive impact it can have on people’s lives.” 

Clare has over 20 years’ experience of working in the North East in both statutory and voluntary sector organisations as well as working for many years with the education sector and a broad range of partnerships to support positive outcomes for children, young people and their families. 

Most recently, Clare worked for Middlesbrough Council where she developed and managed Middlesbrough Achievement Partnership, which was set up to support improved outcomes for children and young people and help remove barriers to learning, enabling students to achieve the best life chances.

Clare explains: “Engaging with arts and cultural activities is so important for us all and opportunities should be available to everyone to ensure that each child and young person has the best experiences that can help shape their lives. It is increasingly important that we support access to arts and culture during this time when children, young people and families are experiencing many challenges due to the current pandemic. 

“I look forward to working with the team and partners to look at how Culture Bridge North East can continue to lead and shape this work in the most effective way, in these changing and uncertain times.” 

Bill Griffiths, Head of Programmes & Collections for Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, and lead for Culture Bridge North East, said: "We are thrilled to have made the appointment, Clare brings a wealth of skills and experience with a real focus on supporting children and young people for whom culture can seem quite distant."

Catherine Hearne, Chair of CBNE Advisory Board, explains: "We are committed to building on our strengths and refreshing our approaches from the Scottish Borders to the Tees Valley and everywhere in between. We're looking forward to working with Clare who's responsible for implementing our vision with her talented team."