Storyhouse has announced that Peter Mearns has been appointed as the new chair of its board.
He replaces Bill Hughes, who steps down having served as Chair since 2015, and will take up his new appointment on May 14.
Peter began his career at BBC Manchester and he has worked in high-profile marketing and communications roles.
Between 1999-2010 he was an executive director at the Northwest Development Agency, where he led the development of award-winning international marketing programmes for the Northwest and was part of the team behind a series of prestigious regional events and festivals including The Liverpool Biennial, Manchester International Festival and Liverpool European Capital of Culture.
Peter, is also a marketing & communications advisor, an artist and photographer.
He has extensive experience of the culture and sports sectors having held a number of non-executive positions including Deputy Chair of Arts Council England (Northwest); Council Member of Arts Council England (North); Member of Tate Liverpool Council; Trustee of FACT and Liverpool Biennial; Member of the Nations &; Regions Group for London 2012; Chair of the London 2012 Torch Relay Steering Group (Northwest); Member of Sports Council England (Northwest); Chair of England’s North Country and Trustee of Northwest Vision+Media.
His current non-executive roles include Chair of Bluecoat, Liverpool’s Centre for Contemporary Arts ; Chair of Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art; Trustee of Open Eye Gallery and Committee Member of Tate Liverpool.
Andrew Bentley, chief executive of Storyhouse, said: “Peter is a great asset and we are delighted that he has agreed to take up this challenging and exciting role.
“Our charity elects an existing trustee to chair the organisation, Peter has been vice-chair since 2015.
“Our success is driven by a dedicated group of trustees, we are as grateful as ever for their support.
“We have appointed three new trustees this year through public recruitment, along with a Young Trustee, Phoebe Ormond, who joined the board in March.
“Bill Hughes steps down as chair in May.
“He has been an unswerving supporter and a key ally in the successful opening of our new building.
“The Storyhouse family extend the warmest thanks to Bill for all his service and we look forward to many years of welcoming him as a customer, without business getting in the way!”
Peter Mearns said: “I’m delighted that the Board of Storyhouse has appointed me as its new chair and very much look forward to working with my fellow Trustees and the Executive to take the organisation into its next phase of development, building on the excellent chairmanship of Bill Hughes who has done such a great job.
“Storyhouse has an innovative, outward facing culture, is a game changer for Chester and the Region, acting as a catalyst for economic and social regeneration and has established a national reputation for its arts programme.”
Bill Hughes said: “The last three years have been an exciting time to have been chair of the Board.
“They have seen Storyhouse make a huge impact on the city and the region, but, as its array of national awards demonstrates, it is also gaining significant recognition much further afield.
“Peter’s wealth of high-level experience in the public sector, together with his extensive engagement with arts companies and organisations, makes him ideally suited to overseeing Storyhouse’s continued development and success.”