Read the stories of three more members of the Guildhall team as they adjust to life in an ever changing landscape
“The only word I can describe the past 6 months is – unimaginable.”
Through the thicket and blur that has been the past 10 months, the Guildhall team have been working in and out of the building, dealing with show reschedules and some (un)welcome lodgers. Catch up with another three members of the team as they share what it is to be a part of the Guildhall.
Rachel Maryan – General Manager
My main concern has and always will be my team and how each individual will cope. We have a diverse team, and everyone has different levels of coping – so I am always trying to figure out how we can make it work for everyone.
The only word I can describe the past 6 months is – unimaginable. I have worked in hospitality or leisure since I was 15 years old and during that time the industry has seen growth upon growth. It was an industry that has always been reliable, trusted and steady. Jobs always a plenty and job security at pretty much 100%. This industry is now on its knees, literally having to beg for survival. To me that is simply unimaginable.
Despite all of this, I believe in the heart of the Guildhall more than anything else. The heart is the team, and if any team can ensure survival its this one. We are strong and resilient, just like our beloved building.
Nick Coles – Events Director and Technical Services
I have felt a little like Tom Hanks in Castaway. With none of the hustle and bustle the building has felt bigger than usual and a little eerie. I never got to the point of talking to a football, but I did have the radio turned up as to not feel as lonely. Even with a few contractors working in the basement the soul of the building was missing.
The highlight has definitely been the wildlife. At one point we had four seagull nests, one of which blocked up a roof drain and caused a major flood in the trust office. We had six seagull chicks strutting around the roof and every time I had to go and check the roof; I would take my life in my hands as I would get dive bombed from their parents.
I can’t wait to get back to the buzz back in the building. After working for the Guildhall for 36 years, I can’t say I’m enjoying now being one of the only people I see all day at work. Every day is different with a constant flow of people whether in the café, attending meetings set up or coming to gig. It would be nice to have a day where Covid isn’t the main topic of most of my conversations.
“Pubs and hairdressers on July 4th and cases were continuing to drop, surely we were next to open? Ha! How wrong we were…”
Curt Hill – Event and Production Co-ordinator
March until now has been a strange time, I don’t personally feel working from home is for me. Trying to stay focused and not just Instagram photos of my cat sleeping was my first challenge.
Secondly, we had to move the whole spring programme into next year, and in some cases even further. Before we knew it by early April, we were starting to reschedule the rest of June and as the weeks passed were started to cautiously move July and early August but the optimism for Comic Con was strong. Pubs and hairdressers were set to open up for my birthday on July 4th and cases were continuing to drop, surely we were next to open? Ha! How wrong we were…
I am really looking forward to being back permanently in the building, and witnessing events being built. I have to say, the thing I am looking forward to the most is seeing the Auditorium being rigged, the bars being set up, and the audiences pouring in. It can’t come soon enough.
“the soul of the building was missing.”
This Is Not Goodbye
Although a difficult time for all, we will keep on going to make sure we can provide world-class entertainment for audiences. There are some things you can do for us as a lover of performance. Consider a donation, joining as a member and you can always buy tickets for one of our many shows we have booked in for the near future, and beyond.
Staring into the unknown is always a challenging concept. With the future of live performance as a whole changing before our eyes, it is now more important than ever to keep on going. From all of the team at the Guildhall, we cannot wait to get back to business as usual and will always be looking forward to the day where we can once again welcome everyone back to our beloved building.