Settle Stories has a small staff team all year round. There is one full-time staff member and three part-timers. At festival time we are joined for the festival week by approximately 2 freelancers. To find out more about our funding go here.
Sita Brand - Director
On leaving university Sita's first job was as a Storyteller with Common Lore. Since then she has worked as an actress, writer, producer, theatre director and teacher of meditation and mindfulness. She's worked in schools, libraries, theatres, arts organisations large and small and prisons. Her favourite story as a child was Rapunzel. She dyed her hair once in an effort to have long golden hair. But that's another story. When she's not at Settle Stories she works as a storyteller and as an arts and heritage consultant.
Charles Tyrer - Communications & Events Manager
Charles loves organising things and started setting up arts events at 16. With a first class degree in Drama and Performance from Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, he's enjoying a career in arts, communications and events management with Settle Stories. He teaches playwriting for young people and runs workshops in public speaking. He has run courses both in Settle, and as far away as Italy. His favourite story is 'The Collector' by John Fowles.
Hazel Richardson - Heritage Project Officer
After university, Hazel taught English at several Further Education Colleges. She continued her interest in the study of language through an M.Ed in Linguistics. She has worked for several charities and joined the team at Settle Stories following their successful application to the Heritage Lottery Fund to deliver an exciting new project, Tom Twistleton 100, in her roles as Heritage Project Officer.
When she's not at Settle Stories, Hazel also works part time in Settle Library and invigilates at Settle College. She loves poetry and her favourite story is Cinderella, which her sister used to read to her.
Gillian Muir - Finance Manager
Starting life as a biologist, Gillian has a BSc (Hons) in Biology and a PhD in Molecular Biology. Following a move from bonny Scotland to the Yorkshire Dales in 2002, and planning on staying for just a year, she's now settled down here with her family. In recent years she's re-trained in accountancy and works for several local firms in the area including working part time for Settle Stories. Gillian's also a book worm, her favourite book being Ian Bank's, The Wasp Factory.
Declan Cardus - Apprentice
Declan is undertaking a Business Skills apprenticeship with Settle Stories. Before joining the team, he spent 2 years learning about Digital Media and Business at Craven College. Declan is a local lad and has volunteered for events such as The Festival of Happiness (2017) before his official enrollment. He's enjoying getting stuck in with a variety of tasks at Settle Stories and has shown a great interest in photography and film-making. In his spare time Declan can often be spotted free running out and about in Settle.
During the festival we are joined by:
Kamini Gupta - Festival Designer
Kamini is an artist and designer with skills in both theatre and graphic design. She joins us at festival time to design the festival staging. She enjoys stories that lift the spirits with plenty of magic and mischief.
Tony Crossland - Event Photographer
After a career in aviation, Tony returned to his first love - photography. He seeks out the detail in every image and enjoys taking photos of Settle Stories events.