Portsmouth Cultural Trust Trustees


Portsmouth Cultural Trust Trustees

Portsmouth Cultural Trust, registered charity number 1153358 and established in February 2011, is managed by a Board of Trustees as an independent body. Mark Smith was appointed as Chairman of the board.

The appointed board members are:

Anthony Brown

Anthony has been Head of Marketing for the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra (BSO) since 2000. The BSO are one of this country’s leading orchestras and performed at the re-opened the Guildhall in 1959.

Anthony is also company director of Heritage Concerts which has successfully put on several outdoor events. Anthony has had a 20 year association with the Guildhall and experienced many great concerts. Anthony has been a trustee since the formation in 2011.

Chris Gilder

Chris has an extensive background in construction and is Bid Manager for Wates, a large construction company. He previously worked for Warings, Costain and Balfour Beatty.

He has been a Portsmouth resident for 20 years and sits on the Client Team managing Guildhall Renaissance. He has been a trustee since the formation in 2011.

Jacquie Shaw

Jacquie has had a long association with the Historic Dockyard which has included Head of Communications and Visitor Services when the new Mary Rose Museum opened in May 2014.

Jacquie is PR Manager for the National Museum of the Royal Navy. She has also been a trustee for Aspex Gallery and an advisor to Petersfield Museum. Jacquie has been a trustee since the formation in 2011.

Nick Leach

As Head of Catering Services for the University of Portsmouth, Nick has responsibility for providing food options for 22,000 students. Nick has worked in catering for most of his adult life including the London Business School and Kings College Hospital in London.

Nick is a member of the Craft Guild of Chefs and a fellow of the Institute of Inn Keepers. In common with all the trustees he is passionate about music and attends many concerts. Nick has been a trustee since the formation in 2011 and is a member of the Client Team overseeing Guildhall Renaissance.

Simon Frost

Simon is owner of Hibou Communications and a former CEO of the Parity Trust, a community finance operation. Through Parity he supported many community schemes including the refurbishment of the New Theatre Royal in Portsmouth.

Simon chairs the Trust’s Audit and Finance Committee. Simon now lives in France with his wife, he has been a trustee since the formation in 2011.

Sir David Steel

Sir David was until 2014 Second Sea Lord having been Navy Base Commander for Portsmouth. He recently took up the role of CEO of Leeds Castle Foundation Trust and is Deputy Lieutenant of Hampshire and Freeman of the City of London.

David is passionate about the Guildhall and its heritage and is a regular attendee at classical music concerts. He has been a trustee since its formation in 2011.

Cllr. Linda Symes

Linda joined the Trust in 2015. She is the Portfolio Holder for Culture and Leisure at the City Council and is a keen supporter of local culture.

Linda has been involved with a number of local networks including the ‘Duisburg/Portsmouth Friendship Committee and several local trusts including the Mary Rose Trust. Linda’s grandfather was a stonemason who worked on the original building.


The Portsmouth Cultural Trust consists of:

Andy Grays, Chief Executive Officer

Andy Grays has spent his whole career in arts management. Originally with the Apollo Leisure Group in the late 1980’s where he worked at some of this country’s largest theatres, he joined Stoll Moss Theatres in 1989.

He worked on the opening of Miss Saigon at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane before taking over as manager of the Lyric Theatre Shaftsbury Avenue. His professional career has seen him open and develop many unique venues including the Hat Factory in Luton in 2004 and he helped form the Luton Cultural Trust in 2008.

In 2012 he took up his current role as CEO of the Portsmouth Cultural Trust. Whilst he loves theatre and contemporary dance, music is his passion.

Katie Britton, Head of Finance & Commercial Development

Katie was proud to join the Portsmouth Cultural Trust in January 2015 after working in various other industries, including retail and manufacturing. She began her career working for a classical music shop followed by a large roofing felt manufacturer in Canterbury where she gained the beginnings of my accountancy qualifications. Following a move to Portsmouth in 2007, Katie worked for the Pall Corporation and on-line sports retailer Wiggle where she qualified as a CIMA accountant in 2013.

The move to the cultural and charity sector has been very rewarding for Katie, she states ‘it is my privilege to work with this dedicated energetic team, and to be part of something very special’.

Nick Coles, Head of Technical and Support Services

Since 1984, Nick has developed a vast knowledge of sound, lighting and stage production with the number of position within the Guildhall Stage department.

In 2012, Nick was appointed the role of Head of Technical Services, with the responsibilities of maintaining and enhancing the fabric of the building, along with overseeing the requirements of events, developing the high quality of service and meeting the ideals of the Cultural Trust. Nick has toured nationally and internationally, with a variety arts forms and television, as well as producing his own productions.

Rachel Maryan, Operations Manager

Having worked in Hotel food and beverage operations for 9 years in Kent & London mainly for Hilton Hotels, Rachel ventured away from hotels and landed a job as Assistant General Manager at The Charing Cross Theatre & The Players Restaurant & Bar.

Initially Rachel’s focus was mainly on the development of the food and beverage offer there, but she found herself drawn into the box office and front of house operations world of theatres.
During Rachel’s time there she was promoted to General Manager.

When Rachel re-located to the south coast, she felt that the commute was getting too much and came across a very rare position outside of London here at the Guildhall.

Rachel states that she is ‘proud to work in such an iconic venue and to of been a part of the team that has made much improvement to the Guildhall operation’.