The Team

Want to say hello? Here’s how to contact us.

Senior management

Chris Gribble, Chief Executive and Board Member

Chris Gribble is NCW’s CEO and in charge of the overall strategic direction of the organisation and its artistic, social and place-making impact. He is Chair of the International Cities of Refuge Network ( and sits on the board of Carcanet Press and Modern Poetry in Translation and both the New Anglia LEP Culture Board and its Skills Advisory Panel. He has a PhD in German poetry and philosophy from Manchester University, swims enthusiastically, runs slowly and reads constantly.

Alison McFarlane, Director of Strategy


Amanda Salmon, Head of Operations and Commercial

Amanda is Head of Operations and Commercial. Amanda has re-joined the National Centre for Writing having previously worked for the organisation as General Manager. Prior to this, Amanda was General Manager for Dragon Hall under the Norfolk and Norwich Heritage Trust. She has a background in commercial events management, business development and general management in both the private and charity sectors. She loves to read, spending time outdoors with her family, and has joined a ‘Back to Netball’ team.

Freya Gallagher-Jones, Operations Officer

Fresh from her BA in English Literature, Freya has been with NCW since 2015, when she started as a Weston Jerwood Creative Bursary placement. She is now Operations and Commercial Officer facilitating the operational delivery of NCW’s events at Dragon Hall, venue hire, building management and human resources. Freya is a self-confessed musicophile and has her fingers in a few creative pies, side hustling in illustration, craft and most recently metalworking.


Peggy Hughes, Programme Director

Peggy Hughes is Programme Director. She is also Chair of Literature Alliance Scotland, and on the board of publishers 404Ink and charity Open Book Reading. She is from Northern Ireland, and before moving to Norwich worked in literature in Scotland, at the University of Dundee, Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust, Scottish Poetry Library and the Edinburgh International Book Festival. Peggy enjoys: walking and running, the outdoors, whimsy, radio, films and talking.

Kate Griffin, Associate Programme Director

As Associate Programme Director, Kate Griffin focuses on international literature, translation and residencies. She previously worked for the British Centre for Literary Translation, Arts Council England, British Council Russia and as a freelancer for organisations including PEN International, Wasafiri and And Other Stories. Her photography blog is

Hannah Garrard, Programme Manager, Learning and Participation

Hannah develops creative engagement programmes for children, young people and communities, offering a way into the literary arts for everyone. She has worked as an educator in many different spaces including a school library on a Liberian refugee camp, in a South Korean high school and in many corners of Norfolk as a youth worker for the young person’s charity, MAP. She is passionate about collectives, creative spaces and of course, books. Hannah is also a UEA Creative Writing MA alumna.

Laura Stimson, Programme Manager

Laura has been with National Centre for Writing since 2007, working primarily on live literature and talent development projects. She’s a graduate of Norwich School of Art & Design and has worked in event management for the NHS, for performing arts venue The Garage and as a reader for the Sky Academy Arts Scholarship. Laura is currently working on NCW’s Early Career Awards. She writes fiction and is represented by Blake Friedmann Literary Agency.

Sarah Bower, Programme Manager

Sarah runs the Escalator and Emerging Literary Translation Programmes for NCW. A fiction writer herself, she also teaches creative writing. Her past roles have included running a hospice for sick children, working in production for a women’s film co-op, wire drawing and being a knife thrower’s assistant in the circus. She originally came from Sheffield but has lived in Greece, Canada and Hong Kong before fetching up in Norwich.

Florence Reynolds, Programme Officer

Flo Reynolds is Programme Officer, focusing on the programming and delivery of NCW’s festivals, year-round events and the Writer’s Toolkit face-to-face workshops programme. They are s a Clore Emerging Leader (2019) and prior to working at NCW, they worked in academic publishing and the heritage sector. Flo’s poetry and essays have appeared in the likes of The White Review, Magma, Stand and more, and their debut pamphlet is forthcoming from Guillemot Press in 2021. When they’re not working or writing, Flo enjoys gardening and cooking. Their website is

Victoria Maitland, Programme Assistant

Victoria Maitland is Programme Assistant, Learning and Participation. A lifelong Norwich resident, she graduated from UEA in 2015, taught creative writing in Leeway Women’s Refuge, and worked as a copy writer before joining NCW in 2017. She loves cycling and can occasionally be found talking about books on the internet.

Lillie Coles, Programme Assistant

Lillie is Programme Assistant for NCW’s public-facing programmes, and supports the administration, logistics and event management for festivals, workshops, residencies and awards. Originally from London, Lillie graduated with a BA in English Literature with Creative Writing, and an MSc in Business from UEA, before joining NCW in 2018.  Lillie’s interests include baking, yoga, documentaries, mountain hiking, and writing prose and poetry inspired by nature.


Alice Kent, Director of Communications

Prior to joining NCW Alice was a Marketing Manager at Norwich University of the Arts and before that Communications Manager at The Poetry Trust. She also worked for a number of years as Communications Manager for a national body focused on business start-ups. Alice has an MA in European Journalism having studied in Aarhus, Denmark and Utrecht, the Netherlands.  Her first short story Len’s Whole Life was published in the inaugural Words and women anthology and she was long-listed for the Grazia Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction First Chapter.

Simon Jones, Digital Marketing Manager

Simon is the digital specialist, having previously worked for 14 years in the tech industry. He produces The Writing Life podcast and oversees the website and video projects. When he’s not at Dragon Hall he writes serialised fiction. His debut novel A Day of Faces won a Watty Award in 2016, he recently completed the 3-year run of The Mechanical Crown, and his How to Write Serialised Fiction guide is read by emerging writers around the world.

Stephanie McKenna, Communications Manager

Steph is the Communications Manager, leading on our box office and the promotion of our festivals, events and in-person workshops. A graduate of the University of East Anglia, she has previously held Communications roles in the NHS and local government. As well as helping to co-host The Writing Life podcast with Simon, Steph co-hosts a pop culture podcast in her spare time. She is also editor in chief of the SHHHH Guide to Norwich.

Róisín Batty, Communications Assistant

Róisín oversees NCW’s social media channels, assists with website and print promotions, and supports the administration of our box office. She also curates a monthly blog for Visit Norwich. Her background is in libraries, both in community and higher education settings, where she assisted with the planning and delivery of community events and led computer literacy sessions with vulnerable adults. A graduate of Goldsmith’s College, her interests lie in all things creative; from reading and writing poetry and scripts to exploring visual arts, theatre, textiles and film.


Meg Rumbelow Hemsley, Development Manager

Meg has a background in arts fundraising, working for Arvon and Whitechapel Gallery in London before joining the team in September 2018. Her role focuses on our revenue fundraising which keeps her busy with writing funding bids to trusts and foundations, looking after the NCW Supporters Circle and organising special events for our supporters. Meg is Norfolk born and bred and lives in the countryside where she enjoys birding and writing about the natural world in her poems, watching films and drawing portraits.


David Barrass, Head of Finance

David has been the Head of Finance for nearly three years.  He has over 13 years experience in the charity and arts sectors having been the Head of Finance at Cambridge Arts Theatre for 10 years.  David’s interests outisde of work involve being outside whether it be walking, allotmenteering, gardening or wildlife/birdwatching.

Maggie Ludlow, Senior Finance Officer

Collaboration – Place – Change Leadership Programme

Nicola Naismith, Project Manager