Supporting and promoting the arts in Hackney

About us


The Board of Trustees is made up of local people from a wide variety of professions and backgrounds and ages who have wide experience in art and design (including urban design), local history and heritage.
Trustees include a local government councillor and a conservation area committee member, as well as practising artists and musicians.

Trust membership is approaching a hundred and growing fast.


We are currently inviting applications from professionals and interested local people to sit on the Board of Trustees.

This is an exciting time for the Clapton Arts Trust, with the Old Schoolhouse restoration and activities still be be developed in detail, and funding – both HLF and match-funding – still be to be secured. With so much to do, there’s quite a wide choice of creative and rewarding avenues for you to choose from.

At this time you will be particularly welcome if you have:

• expertise in accountancy, finance and funding, governance and CRS (corporate responsibility)
• experience of heritage building restoration and/or community projects
• been involved in other Heritage Lottery Fund projects – at all levels…

…but such experience is not a pre-requisite – we value enthusiasm and commitment to the local community as highly.

As little as an hour or two a month in this unpaid, voluntary role can have a big and lasting impact, and consequently be very rewarding.

If you are interested in getting involved please email, and let us have details of your field of expertise and/or interests, along with your contact details.



Chair: cllr Linda Kelly
Vice-chair: Julia Lafferty
Interim treasurer: Gilbert Smyth
Secretary: David White

Liz Shackleton
Jonathan Kemp
Laurie Storey
Caroline Peat
Euan Mills


(surnames in alphabetical order)


Linda Kelly

Linda Kelly has been a Hackney resident since she came from India as a child and now works in the voluntary sector as an Advocate for adults with learning disabilities. Linda was first elected in 2002 as a local councillor to represent Leabridge Ward in Hackney, in which ward the Old Schoolhouse is situated, and has been a LBH councillor ever since.
Linda is also an experienced Social Care: work & life skills trainer.

Linda will use her expertise of working with volunteers, her experience as a councillor and her wider contacts for the benefit of the Old Schoolhouse Restoration Project.


Jonathan Kemp

Senior conservator (previously Sen. Conservator at V&A).
Jonathan Kemp has over twenty years experience as a sculpture conservator and consultant working on a range of movable and immovable artefacts dating from between circa 2000 BC to the twentieth century.
He has worked extensively in stone, plaster, fresco, ceramic, and artificial stone in both public and private UK institutions and holdings as well as on international projects in Canada, Spain, the Ukraine, and Iran.
Until October 2009 he was a senior sculpture conservator at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Currently he is studying for a PhD in experimental media at the University of Westminster.


Julia Lafferty

Julia Lafferty, a resident of Hackney since 1981, is a member of the Clapton Conservation Areas Advisory Committee, an advisory body on conservation issues to the London Borough of Hackney. She also serves on the committees of the Hackney Society and the Friends of Clapton Cinematograph Theatre. Previous to this she sat on the local committee of Sutton House, a National Trust property in Hackney. Her working life was spent in the education and environmental protection sectors, most recently with the Campaign to Protect Rural England. She is a regular contributor to Hackney Society publications and to “Hackney History”, the magazine produced by the Friends of Hackney Archives Department.


Euan Mills

Euan is an urban designer with over eight years experience in masterplanning and regeneration.  After five years at leading urban design consultancy Urban Initiatives, he left to become the creative force behind one of the first neighbourhood plans to be produced under the new Localism Bill, the Chatsworth Road Neighbourhood Plan.

Euan has since spoken at numerous conferences and panels on neighbourhood planning and co-authored “The 21st Century Agora: a new and better vision for town centres” with ResPublica, 00 Architects, Julian Dobson and Action for Market Towns.  His work has recently been profiled in ‘Planning Magazine’.

He holds a Bachelor’s degree in architecture from the Mackintosh School of Architecture, a Masters in Urban Design from the University of Westminster and provides urban design advice for the Mayor of London’s Planning Decisions Unit.


Caroline Peat

A local Hackney resident for 10 years. Caroline has extensive experience in CSR field and operational management having held senior posts in Business in the Community (, as their National Community Investment Manager and as Operations Manager at Barclays Investment Funds Limited. Caroline now works freelance as a consultant. She has a keen interest in local politics and is Treasurer of the Powerscroft Road Residents Committee.


Liz Shackleton

A Hackney resident since 1978, Liz is the MD of Jamm Print and Production in both the UK and Australia.  Liz has experience as an employer of 50+ staff, and of the difficulties and joys of restoring a Grade II listed building – the Jamm offices and factory in SE London were restored from an original condition worse even than the Old School House, to the satisfaction of English Heritage, the London Borough of Greenwich, and Jamm’s staff and customers.

Gilbert Smyth

Wide experience (since 2003) as a political and voluntary community activist with a long list of community and environmental successes, helping to found local community associations, sitting on steering groups as well as acting as secretary to the Shacklewell Lane and Powerscroft Road community organizations locally.


Laurie Storey

Artist with extensive exhibition set-up experience.
Laurie graduated from an MA in Communication Design at Central St Martins in 2008. He has been a guest tutor at South East Essex College of art and design, and a visiting tutor at London College of Communication. He is currently a co-director at Vulpes Vulpes and has assisted children’s workshops.

David White

Graphic artist with background in advertising and design (previously Art Director at RSJ, Creative Director at Omni Art & Design Ltd. London). David established a Student Art Gallery in Perth, WA and has taught Painting & Drawing Adult Ed.

David has a particular interest in the visual and built environment and was the driving force behind the creation of CAT, formed specifically to save and regenerate local historic buildings and promote an awareness and appreciation of heritage and the arts. He has been secretary of the trust since its inception in 2010 and designed the Trust’s shield logo (below).

David has been secretary of the Beecholme & Casimir Tenants & Residents Association and secretary of the Hackney Homes Clapton Residents Panel for the last four years (representing some 16,000 residents in the NE of Hackney), dealing with a range of personal, housing and environmental issues.
David now consults (on a voluntary basis) on design for Hackney Homes “Estate Plans” project and has just been given the Mayor of London’s “Team London Star” volunteering award.