An important first step after forming the Guild was to seek nominations from members for its first Court.

We are pleased to reveal the Court members filling the following positions: Clerk Treasurer and Court member (x10).

To help you get to know them a bit better, we have asked the Court members to introduce themselves and share what they bring to their new role.

Chris Bailey - Master of the Guild

I have lived in York since 2012. I am married to an artist and we have two grown up daughters. My career in art and design higher education began in London art schools in the 1970s and included senior management roles at Northumbria and Leeds Beckett Universities. I am a cultural policy consultant, an Emeritus Professor of Cultural History and Visiting Professor in the Business School at York St. John University. I am a longstanding supporter of the case for culture in the English regions and I have served on and chaired many boards of arts organisations. I am the Chair of Pilot Theatre.

The warmth of the welcome for the new Guild, from professionals and many residents as well as from our fellow Guild Masters, Clerks and members shows that we are part of a movement that has found its moment. York has 2000 years of ambition and achievement behind it and should make the most of the opportunity of the UNESCO designation to play its part on the world stage, showing leadership in creativity and innovation. Sometimes ‘Guildspeak’ expresses it well. We should work for the threefold benefit, of the reputation of the City of York, the commonweal of its citizens, and for the betterment of our craft. 

Nicola Ainscough - Treasurer of the Guild

I am a chartered accountant, who trained and qualified with Deloitte before leaving in 2013 to start my own accountancy practice here in York. In addition to my skills with numbers, I am an artist and singer who loves the creative arts and supporting individuals who seek to turn their artistic talent into thriving businesses and be on the cutting edge of the increasing integration between technology and style.

As a Deloitte alumni and the current President of the York Society of Chartered Accountants, I am able to bring top quality accounting and financial oversight and support to the guild from the outset of its financial journey. My aim being to build a strong financial foundation for a guild that I hope will serve the local and national creative business community for many years to come.

Fiona Thompson - Court Member

I am Dean of the Faculty of Arts at York St John University - which covers a wide range of the creative sector. I have worked in HE for over 20 years and also had a successful career as a television programme maker - I am Chair of the Royal Television Society Yorkshire Centre. I have a great passion for arts education: that provides students with the opportunities to engage effectively in cultural production; that is externally focussed and makes a positive impact on the City, regionally and globally. A particular focus is on inclusivity, challenging prejudice and celebrating 'otherness'.

I am full of ideas and energy whilst also being pragmatic. In my role I have to be strategic, horizon scanning continually, and also operational, ensuring the strategic can be achieved. In my role I can bring my knowledge skills and experience to the table; I can bring the University and all it has to offer in terms of students, knowledge transfer etc. I am a good team-worker as well as a good leader. I see huge potential within this group for the City and I want to do my bit to maximise potential.

Owen Turner - Court Member

Passionate about the city I live in (York) & the award winning business I own and run, United by Design also in York. Motivated about the sector we work in and fuelled by our ethos & approach of #Brandhappy®. Worked in the design industry for 20 years. Collaborate on projects with clients and nurture our amazing team and talent coming through education. Love to listen and create. Rugby for York RI RUFC, run 10k's, Surf & snowboard, slightly obsessed about real ale. Likes innovation & art. Co-founder of Anonymous Records.

I am full of ideas and energy whilst also being pragmatic. In my role I have to be strategic, horizon scanning continually, and also operational, ensuring the strategic can be achieved. In my role I can bring my knowledge skills and experience to the table; I can bring the University and all it has to offer in terms of students, knowledge transfer etc. I am a good team-worker as well as a good leader. I see huge potential within this group for the City and I want to do my bit to maximise potential.

Alan Gillott - Court Member

I am a member of the Plaisterers and Parish Clerks London Guilds. I was a designer, developer and product manager in the IT industry: including defining internet and database standards. I am also a poet, broadcaster and partner in a York based independent press which publishes the Dream Catcher literary arts magazine. I was closely involved in the early days of the York Literature Festival. I am also part of the Sounds Lyrical project to develop new classical song and the Ryedale Book Festival. With my partner we put on regular literary events in York.

I understand medieval trade guild in a modern world and can help build links with the London Companies. As an arts promoter in York I have links with arts organisations around and about the city and surrounding area. I have experience in the running of three literary festivals, a musical project which involves concerts and broadcasts and one theatrical festival that didn't quite make it. My business is also involved in two other York festivals. As a guild member I expect to build a strong guild and develop traditions that will serve the city for many years to come.

Charles Cecil - Court Member

Back in 1981 I was lucky enough to be invited to write an adventure game for the Sinclair ZX81. I have been writing narrative-driven video games ever since.

I co-founded Revolution Software in 1990. Based in York, Revolution is one of the world’s leading adventure game developers having created games including the multi-million selling Broken Sword series. I have worked on titles as diverse as The Da Vinci Code for Sony Pictures and Doctor Who for the BBC for which I won a BAFTA award.

I believe that through the UNESCO designation, the development plans for the Guildhall, the studio at Church Fenton, the wealth of talented indie companies across the creative industries spectrum and, of course, this Guild, York has a unique opportunity to become a cross-media creative hub. I intend to try and help make this happen.

Mat Lazenby - Court Member

I'm co-founder of creative agency LazenbyBrown, we work on a wide-range of commercial creative projects for national and local brands. I am founder member of the digital arts collective Coded:Language, creative fellow of CCAD and York St John university. I speak widely on creative education within educational settings (TEDx and School Speakers) and have undertaken long-term creative change projects for schools as part of the Creative Partnerships project. I was a steering group member of York's International Digital Arts Festival; SightSonic (2000-08). I was also a founder member of the Creation Convergent Media Network.

I have been working in the creative industries in York for 25 years and have a broad knowledge of the City's culture, its art and music scene and how these uniquely overlap with our colleges and universities. I work well with others and am generous with my ideas and time. I am a well respected and connected member of the regional creative community. I have high hopes for what the Guild can achieve, both in terms of elevating digital work to the status of 'craft' and also how we can transform the idea of apprenticeships within the sector.


David Edmunds - Court Member

I'm the Director of Dep Arts and the Creative Director of the newly formed events wing of Dep Arts called The Departure Lounge. I've over 20 years experience working in arts and culture worldwide including working with Liverpool City Council in 2008 in their year as European Capital of Culture. I have significant experience of working on a strategic level having served on numerous arts boards.

Having recently relocated Dep Arts & The Departure Lounge to York, I'm eager to contribute to the cultural & creative life of the city, it feels like a really exciting time to be based in York right now and I'm eager to be a driving force in things as they grow and move forward. Having ran my own company for 10 years, I know how to get things done and would welcome the opportunity to contribute to the further development of the Guild & its members.

Ann Gurnell - Court Member

I'm an experienced marketer working with creative commercial companies and people for all my career. Based in York for over 30 years I've worked locally, regionally, nationally and internationally with brilliant brands, marketing, cultural visitor experiences tourism and the business economy. Passionate about communication and engagement, the world of media arts crosses boundaries. As a geographer by training, I am neither artist or scientist and relish bridging gaps and unlocking and inspiring people's potential. I am a Fellow of the Royal Society for the encouragement of the Arts, Industry and Commerce and was Chair of Governors for a thriving local school.

Being a member of the Court of the Guild of Media Arts would be an exciting challenge and a privilege.

Patty Kraus - Court Member

I am an award-winning TV Producer Director who for the last 29 years, has worked all over the world for the BBC, Channel 4, Discovery and National Geographic. In 2015 I founded Klaxon Media, a company in York that specialises in the art of storytelling by producing attention-grabbing videos that raise public profiles and generate new business.

Currently I am developing the Klaxon Media Academy that aims to bring broadcasting expertise to businesses, organisations and student that want to learn how to make their own videos. Courses include how to script a business story, how to present to a camera, interview techniques, handling journalists, as well as getting the best out of the technical equipment they own.

I have a wealth of experience and contacts in the broadcasting and media industry. I would be able to drive a clear vision and focus for the Guild as well making sure it remains proactive and forward thinking.

I feel there is a gap in learning between Media Students and Industry requirements. I aim to use my experience to help train the next generation of film makers / designers and, where possible, make in roads to mainstream television companies and communications agencies.

Richard Bailey - Court Member

I am a young architect who has been based in Yorkshire since 2004, has worked specifically in York since 2007, and hope to remain in this beautiful area of the world. I am fascinated by the history of York and how this exists alongside both innovation and optimism for the future. I am a busy father of two, and in my rare bits of spare time I can usually be found mountain biking around Dalby forest, ambling around Castle Howard with the family, or shopping more than I ought in York city centre.

With my background in architecture I have a keen eye for design and a strong interest in arts and culture and with my work as a commercial architect I have a strong grasp on the production, display and visualization of information as well as the cost aspect of constructing and creating structures, interiors and installations and my day to day project management skills would be advantageous in assisting in the organisation of an arts event that is to be made up of multiple elements intended to be coordinated together to create a singular visually inspiring festival.

Pete Davis - Court Member

My name is Pete Davis, I'm 44 and the founder and MD of a company called Getmeinsight Ltd, who's main business is running the website. Endorsed by ISBA and the marketing society, the whole premise is to find marketing and media inspiration online via marketing, media and sponsorship ideas. I used to be the Media Controller for Nestle in York and Yorkie Marketing manager. I'm a judge for the MPA awards 2016, media week awards and previous M&M Global judge.

I'm looking to bring my national and international business reach to the York festival. I work very much in the Commercial areas of media and advertising, but in doing so have an extensive network of clients, agencies and media owners to speak with. I'm ideas driven and commercially minded, I can help bolster the festival and assist many of the new and exciting initiatives discussed at the guild meeting. I bring over 20 years commercial marketing and advertising experience across all media disciplines.