Trustees Wanted at Harwich Festival

We are looking for new Trustees at the Harwich Festival. Please see below for more information on the role. For a PDF of the infomation then please contact

The role of The Harwich Festival Trustee

The Harwich Festival (Charity Number 1171712) was established as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation on 21 February 2017, when it superseded The Harwich Festival of the Arts. Its objectives are:

“The promotion of the arts in Harwich and the surrounding area for the public benefit by such means as the Trustees determine including:

*establishing The Harwich Festival as a regional arts hub that provides a diverse range of cultural activities, addressing the needs of all sectors of the community;
*promoting the development of the annual Harwich Festival of the Arts in terms of audience growth (overall numbers, age and geographic spread) and diversity of programme, and building the Festival as a resource for local arts activity;
*promoting cultural events throughout the year which are located in venues that ensure full engagement with the community”;
development of the Harwich Arts and Heritage Centre as a resource for creative and performing arts for the local community.

The Harwich Festival has a salaried General Manager and an unremunerated Artistic Director. It also has a committee whose primary function is the oversight of the various events promoted by The Harwich Festival.

Historically, the charity had focussed primarily on the annual “Harwich Festival of the Arts” (hence the charity’s previous title), but in recent years its remit has become far wider, including:

*Annual Festival of the Arts

*Harwich Arts and Heritage Centre

*Illuminate Festival

*Harwich Box Office as an arts hub in Harwich library

*Clacton and Dovercourt Beach Festivals

*Creative Arts Conference for local primary schools

*Supporting Live Music in the local area

*Promotion of a range of cultural events throughout the year.

As the charity’s remit widens, there is a need to ensure that it maximises its effectiveness in terms of public benefit. This can only be achieved through effective oversight and monitoring by the Trustees. As the charity’s objectives stress, it is the Trustees who determine how public benefit should be maximised.

As The Harwich Festival continues to grow, the Trustees will have an increasingly important part to play in helping to determine the charity’s overall direction and strategy. Essentially, the role of the Trustee has six overlapping strands:

*to ensure that the charity remains true to its charitable objectives;

*to ensure that it complies with charity law and its own charter;

*to ensure that the charity is accountable and adopts the correct reporting requirements;

*to ensure that the charity uses its resources responsibly;

*to ensure that the charity takes advice from professional bodies when advisable;

*to ensure that decisions made by the charity’s steering group and artistic director are appropriately questioned and challenged.

This is a very exciting time for The Harwich Festival as it engages more fully with all sectors of the local community. The Trustee’s role is not onerous – there will be quarterly meetings to attend with papers to read in advance. However, there is every opportunity available should the Trustee wish to become more fully involved. The usual term of office is three years, renewable by mutual consent.

The Harwich Festival is looking to increase the range of experience and skills of its Trustees, particularly in the fields of finance, the law and marketing. Candidates should indicate any relevant experience.

In the first instance, please contact either Peter Davis (Trustee and Artistic Director) or John Shaw (Trustee and Treasurer) for further information and an initial discussion by 31st March 2021

January 2021

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