The Board of Trustees

Mark Aldrich

Mark Aldrich is a partner at Browne Jacobson, a Nottingham commercial law firm and sits on their Executive Board. He has been passionate about the theatre since studying English Literature at school and taking leads on the school stage as Arthur Kipps in Half A Sixpence and Henry Higgins in Pygmalion. Mark has continued to take part in amateur dramatics locally, is a keen theatre-goer and is also a trustee of a Nottinghamshire Multi-Academy Trust.

Anthony Almeida

Anthony Almeida is an award-winning theatre and opera director. In 2019 he was named winner of the RTST Sir Peter Hall Director Award. He was the inaugural Link Artist Stage Director at Royal Opera House; and Resident Director at Almeida Theatre for whom he directed actors including Ian McKellen, Fiona Shaw and Ashley Walters in Figures of Speech – a digital film project interrogating leadership.


Steve Battlemuch is a Labour Councillor for Wollaton West on Nottingham City Council. He has been a Trustee since June 2015.

Steve works for the civil service trade union PCS. Previously he worked in the civil service and also for Oxfam. He has particular interests in comedy and contemporary drama and has 2 sons, one is which is currently studying drama at LIPA. He spends what spare time he has watching Forest and Notts cricket.


Andy is a Chartered Accountant and works as a Director at PwC. He studied Economics and Econometrics at the University of Nottingham, before a sabbatical year as Treasurer of the Students’ Union. Other than some time working in London and the US, he has lived in Nottingham since graduation.

He is a very regular theatre goer, both locally and in London and “took to the stage” at Nottingham Playhouse as part of the Coram Boy Choir and as part of the Community singers in Wasteland. Andy Chairs Nottingham Playhouse’s Risk Group and is also an elected member of the Council of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.

Alex Bayley

Alex is Director of Audiences & Marketing at the National Theatre, where he is responsible for ensuring the organisation reaches and engages the widest possible audience in London, across the UK and around the world. Working across live theatre and digital output (notably including NT Live cinema broadcasts), he has overseen a move to data-driven, digital marketing and engagement strategies, and is helping to build stronger, sustained partnerships with theatres across the UK. Originally from Dorset, Alex is a big fan of all forms of arts and culture and a keen gardener.

Tom Davies

Tom is an experienced digital professional with whose career has centred on exploring and improving the use of web technologies in the arts and cultural sectors.

In his day job he is Technical Director and Founder at Kind, the digital agency for purpose-driven organisations. Previously he has worked in a number of agency and theatre development roles, and in a previous life he was a production manager and theatre producer.

Natalie Gasson

Natalie has lived in Nottingham since birth and fell in love with the theatre at a young age thanks to early childhood visits with her parents.

Natalie established a strong business reputation within Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire whilst at the Federation of Small Businesses, working to strengthen small businesses and ensure their fair representation. She subsequently spent time as a Civil Servant working to drive and support the Midlands Engine. Keen to return closer to local delivery she is now Head of Operations at D2N2 LEP.

Natalie joins as a Trustee with a strong desire to enhance operational activities, and with the ethos that the theatre is for all. She is a firm believer that theatre opens minds, drives creativity and brings innovation to people and communities.

Natalie lives with her daughter Evie and fiancé Matthew, she enjoys travel and discovering new wines.

Sofia Nazar-Chadwick

Sofia has over 30 years experience in arts marketing working across film and media, theatre and visual arts. She jumped ship into the third sector three years ago and currently works for an environmental charity in membership recruitment and fundraising. Sofia is also a member of the Board at Broadway Cinema in Nottingham.


Anne Peach is a Labour Councillor for Radford Ward in Nottingham City Council who actively supports local residents and organisations, and is committed to improvements in the quality of life of residents. She has lived and worked in Nottingham for over forty years, and worked in the railway industry. She regularly goes to the theatre and to classical music concerts.


Danielle Russell is a senior marketing, communications and fundraising professional with a career spanning 20 years. She is Head of Alumni Relations and Regular Giving at Nottingham Trent University, and prior to this she spent nine years in a similar role at Sheffield Hallam University.

Danielle believes in the importance of higher education in transforming people’s lives and increasing social mobility, and through her work at both universities has played a crucial role in supporting this.

Before making the move into Higher Education, Danielle enjoyed a career in the arts, working at Sheffield Theatres, the Southbank Centre during the successful £110 million capital fundraising campaign and 2007 relaunch, Box Clever Theatre Company, Stratford Circus Arts Centre and East London Dance.

A dance alumna of the University of Surrey, Danielle has a passion for theatre and dance, and champions access to arts and culture for all.

Neena Sharma

Neena has many years experience as a board level Human Resources professional. Having worked with some of the UK’s most well known companies, she now runs her own HR and Coaching consultancy in Nottingham. She studied English at Loughborough University and is a regular theatre goer. Being passionate about equality, diversity and inclusion, she strongly believes that going to the theatre should be something which is accessible to, and enjoyable for everyone.

Neena joined the Playhouse Board in 2018.


Caroline’s day job involves strategic marketing and business development for locally based Bedrock Tax whilst she also works as a consultant. Current clients include Cambridge Science Park, Social & Local and Food Standards Agency. She’s well connected into the region’s business sector having previously been the Communications & Marketing Director for the East Midlands Development Agency and Head of Corporate Affairs at Nottingham City Council. She’s been on the Board of Dance 4 and Ticketing Network East Midlands. She joined the Playhouse’s Board in 2014 becoming Chair in late 2015.


Paul Southby is a partner at law firm Geldards LLP and Chairman of Marketing Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Limited, the place marketing organisation for the city and county, which incorporates the local inward investment agency Invest in Nottingham, the visitor economy agency Visit Nottinghamshire, and the business membership group Nottingham Partners.