The Creative Heart of Ely and West Anglia
What is Babylon ARTS?
Our mission is to develop creativity and connect communities with arts and culture.
Our aims are:
- For Babylon ARTS to be seen as an essential part of the area’s cultural, economic and artistic life.
- To enrich more people’s lives through our inspiring and dynamic Creative Spaces* and Creative Communities* programmes
- To build our networks, developing partnerships and connections that enable us to grow arts and cultural provision for the enjoyment of people across West Anglia
- To nurture creative practice of those who live and work in West Anglia, providing opportunities through our programmes, to showcase their work.
*We're developing how we talk about our work, the Creative Spaces strand includes the Babylon Gallery and Ely Cinema. Creative Communities includes our project work.
Resourceful: we seek to develop new partnerships and create opportunities through our work to increase opportunities for arts and creativity to flourish.
Passionate: We care deeply about the communities in which we work and will work fervently to showcase and develop engaging and exciting creative opportunities.
Curious: we are interested in people’s ideas and in new ways of working. We’re open to trying new things and taking considered risks to reach new audiences. We’re keen to invoke curiosity in the communities we work in.
Inclusive: we value diversity, promote equality and provide a supportive environment for artists, audiences, partners and businesses to be creative in response to a variety of art forms, styles and genres.
Babylon ARTS (operated by ADEC, Arts Development in East Cambridgeshire), is an independent company limited by guarantee and a registered charity 1043197.
Our Annual Report & Accounts are available to download from Companies House. Details can also be found on our organisation's pages on the Charity Commission website.
Claire Somerville - Chief Executive
Claire re-joined Babylon ARTS (ADEC) in August 2018, having previously delivered projects for the organisation between 2004 and 2006. Claire has been working in the arts for over 16 years, most recently as Head of Children and Young People's Dance at One Dance UK. Claire also chaired the Creative Royston committee for two years, a voluntary arts organisation that delivers an annual town-wide arts festival. In this new role at Babylon ARTS, Claire will be overseeing operations and working with the team to achieve its ambitions as a charity committed to inspiring, developing and delivering quality arts events and activities to engage communities across rural Cambridgeshire and beyond.
Florence Tong - Head of Project Delivery
Florence joined Babylon ARTS in Spring 2018, bringing experience gained from a variety of roles in the cultural sector. Most recently, Florence worked on the e-Luminate Cambridge team, co-ordinating and managing a range of events and activities. Florence has fresh ideas and is keen to make connections with organisations and artists who are interested in developing areas. Visit our projects page to find out more.
Lorree True - Gallery and Finance Officer
Lorree joined our team in August 2016. She comes from a not-for-profit theatrical background, working in New York City. Lorree currently looks after the co-ordination of Ely Cinema and artists who exhibit or sell in the Babylon Gallery.
The Market Place Project is in its second phase, with funding from Arts Council England to run creative programmes from November 2018 - October 2021, offering new and innovative ways to engage audiences and support local artists in areas of low engagement across Fenland and Forest Heath.
Lorna O'Brien - Creative Manager
Ali Atkinson - Creative Agent
Colin Stevens Creative Agent
John Yarrow - Administrative and Events Officer
John started volunteering for ADeC in 2012 and has always been very proud of the way in which the charity reaches out to areas with low arts engagement. Market Place was therefore a logical move for John to learn more about how he can help people get more out of creativity and the arts. John has a BA (Hons) in Literature and Cultural Studies from Staffordshire University.
Amy Wormald - Interim Marketing and Communictions Officer (freelance)
Amy has worked in the arts in Cambridgeshire for over 14 years, leading and supporting a range of creative projects and programmes. Amy has a broad skills set gained from the non-profit, public and private sectors, including experience in strategic planning, event management, engagement and communications. Amy started working with Babylon ARTS in May 2018, to explore ways in which the organisation can make better connections with local residents, businesses and potential supporters. Alongside this work, Amy is a practising artist and an Ely resident who is passionate about the vibrant and growing local community.
Emily Chase works in Learning and Engagement at Kettle's Yard. After achieving her Arts and Design Foundation Diploma at Norwich University of the Arts, she studied Fine Art at Loughborough University Schools of Arts and Design. Emily has worked at Norwich and Norfolk Festival Bridge, Sainsbury’s Centre for Visual Arts, the National Centre for Craft and Design, ADeC (Arts Development for East Cambridgeshire), Smiths Row, Momentum Arts and as an independent freelance arts education practitioner. She is also the founder of Mummas&More; a creative events programme and blog based in East Cambridgeshire.
Ted Coney has been teaching Art for over forty five years, mostly as Head of Art and Design at Hills Road Sixth Form College, and currently at St Andrews, Cambridge. He also works as a Moderator, Examiner and Trainer in Art Education. Ted has been making paintings about family relationships for many years and currently runs Ted Coney's Family Portraits - a pop-up gallery open to the public on Waterside. He also gives lectures and sells prints connected to his practice.
Iain Downey (Secretary) has had a long serving career as a practising solicitor for over 30 years with considerable experience of public facing bodies and still works as a consultant in relevant areas of the law. Prior to retirement Iain was Chief Executive, Solicitor and Clerk to the Middle Level Commissioners (MLC), a statutory public authority operating in Cambridgeshire and Norfolk. With a long interest in the organisation as an audience member, Iain's daughter is currently in the final stages of completing her Gold Arts Award under the guidance of Babylon ARTS.
Stuart Green is a full time practising artist and tutor. Stuart has extensive experience as artist in residence in schools and with public art commissions. A retired previous Director of Art, he is a frequent tutor at Denman College, Oxfordshire and has worked with Babylon ARTS for many years as exhibitor, judge, curator, volunteer and now trustee.
Linda Holland is an experienced consultant with a long career working in senior management in large national and international charities. Developing both strategic and implementations plans to deliver large scale projects, implementing organisational change and supporting the development of individuals and teams. She has worked across sectors including health & social care, charity retail, welfare to work, business and social enterprise start-ups and business growth. Previously she has worked in advertising and film production and was a Director in an SME. As well as a Trustee for Babylon ARTS, Linda is also a Trustee for Cambridge & District Citizens Advice Bureau and chairs their Strategy & Finance Group to diversify income streams. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
David Johnson David Johnson has joined Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy as Head of Programme to help grow and deliver the programme as it moves into the Arts Council England funded National Portfolio as a sector support organisation. David joins from the Albany, an arts centre and social enterprise in Deptford, London, where he was Head of Development. David joined the Albany in 2011 and was responsible for earned and raised income generation, partnership development and contract management for the organisation. Prior to this he worked in the Cultural Development team for the London Borough of Hackney supporting the development of 2012 Cultural Olympiad projects and producing the borough's key youth arts festival, Discover Young Hackney. He is a member of the Institute of Fundraising.
Mike Macey FCA (Treasurer) has been involved with charity accounts from an auditing and Trustee perspective for most of his working life. After eleven years plus years with city firms of chartered accountants his commercial career covered many different sectors including charitable enterprises. This involved a number of turnaround or growth situations including preventing a hospice from going into probable insolvency. Mike spent thirteen years as a performance improvement consultant mainly working for Local Government, principally London Councils and their service providers. Mike is currently a trustee of three charities and an occasional preacher in the Church of England, He is married and has three children and three step children. Principal hobbies are gardening, coarse fishing and now mainly armchair sport and his interests include travel and cultural activities - music, theatre and cinema.
Vandy Massey is an experienced businesswoman, company founder and non-executive director. She spent 10 years as a trustee of a community charity and is currently an advisor to family trusts. Since 2010 Vandy has been a practicing artist, working mainly in the medium of watercolour. She is a member of Cambridge Open Studios, and Chair of the Society of East Anglian Watercolourists.