CHEAD Annual Conference 2022

The Civic Agenda: Art and Design Engaged

The Civic Agenda: Art and Design Engaged

Tuesday 15th & Wednesday 16th March, 2022, University of Northumbria, Newcastle


This conference aims to explore the way forward for creative higher education institutions to engage with a new civic agenda and provide an opportunity to hear from key speakers in this field, offer case studies from leaders in creative HEI’s, explore themes in dedicated workshops and network with colleagues.

We are hosting talks from keynote speakers, panel discussions, local tours, student panel discussion and participatory workshops.

Dates & times

Tuesday 15th March 2022, 11am – 22.00pm

Wednesday 16th March 2022, 9am – 17.30pm


Northumbria University Students’ Union, 2 Sandyford Road, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE1 8SB

Sponsored by

Delegate Information


CHEAD Annual Conference 2022 Prices:

CHEAD Members: £0 – One free place per institution
Additional CHEAD member place: £310
Non-member place: £350

CHEAD institutional members receive one free place at the Annual Conference, institutional members with over 3,000 art and design students receive two places.

PLEASE NOTE: Given the current uncertain COVID-19 situation, we recommend that all delegates ensure they reserve hotel rooms they can cancel and train tickets that can either be refunded or credited. Some delegates may also wish to consider taking out insurance to cover for any loss of expense relating to the CHEAD Annual Conference 2022.

For any queries relating to free places, please contact the Director of Membership and Operations via:

CHEAD will be arranging for coach travel to the following hotels after the annual dinner at the Baltic. Unfortunately, we are not able to offer coach travel to any other hotels.


Vermont Hotel: / 0191 233 1010
£85.00 B&B for sole occupancy
Please contact the hotel to receive a discounted room rate by quoting ‘GA01221’.
Individual cancellation policy – 24 hours prior.


Maldron Hotel: / 0191 640 9500
£75.00 Bed & breakfast based on single occupancy.
Please contact the hotel to receive a discounted room rate by quoting ‘Northumbria University’ and the dates of the conference.


Premier Inn City Centre (The Gate): / 0333 234 6442
Best available rates via the website.

BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art 
Sage Gateshead
Bessie Surtees House
Centre for Life
Discovery Museum
Great North Museum: Hancock
Hatton Gallery
Laing Art Gallery
Newcastle Castle
Seven Stories
Side Gallery
St. Mary’s Heritage Centre
The Biscuit Factory 
The Lit & Phil
The Victoria Tunnel
Tour Start Point

Peace and Loaf
British Cuisine

House of Tides
Fine dining, modern British

Lezzet Restaurant
Turkish Cuisine

Magic Hat
Not for profit, food waste kitchen

Lola Jeans

Locally sourced food

Conference Programme


Conference – Day One

11:00 – 11:30 Registration, Refreshments
11:30 – 11:45 Welcome and Introduction
11.45 Richard Brabner, UPP & Panel Discussion
12.30 Q&A
13.00 Lunch
14.00 Afternoon Tours
16.30 Keynote: Sarah Munro, Director, Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art
17.45 Depart for the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art
18.00 – 22.00 CHEAD Annual Dinner


Conference – Day Two

09:15 CHEAD Annual General Meeting
10:20 University of Northumbria Student Panel
11:30 Break
12:00 Workshops
13:00 Lunch
14:00 Keynote
15:00 Workshops
16.30 Plenary
17.30 Close


Our Speakers

Richard Brabner

Richard Brabner

Director of UPP Foundation

Richard Brabner was appointed Head of UPP Foundation in July 2016 and was promoted to Director in 2018. Working with the trustees, he sets its strategy and leads on all aspects of the UPP Foundation’s activities. Richard joined UPP in 2015 as Business Development Manager and his responsibilities included setting up the UPP Foundation.

Prior to joining UPP, he was Head of Policy at the University of Hertfordshire, advising the Vice-Chancellor and senior management team and leading the University’s public affairs function. Before this, he worked as a researcher for two MPs in Parliament. He graduated from the University of Essex in 2007 and holds an MRes in Public Policy and Management from Birkbeck, University of London.

Sarah Munro

Sarah Munro

Director, Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art

Sarah Munro is currently Director of the UK’s largest contemporary art institution BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead. She is an inspiring and respected cultural leader with significant skills, knowledge and experience gained over 25 years working with artists, curators, writers, producers and the public. Previous roles include Head of Arts, Glasgow Life; Artistic Director, Tramway and Director, Collective Gallery Edinburgh.  She is currently Chair of SCAN, the Scottish Contemporary Art Network, which provides a voice and advocacy for Scotland’s visual arts community.

Our Contributors

Lucy Kennedy

Lucy Kennedy

Chief Executive, National Saturday Club

Lucy Kennedy has over 20 years of experience in the cultural and education sectors. She took on the role of Chief Executive of the Sorrell Foundation and Saturday Club Trust in November 2018 and is leading the strategic expansion of the National Saturday Club programme to increase access to this transformational creative education opportunity for young people nationally. She is working collaboratively across the country, in partnership with further and higher education and cultural institutions, to achieve this vision.

Formally Managing Director at cultural consultancy Futurecity, Lucy headed the organisation’s international offices in London, Boston and Sydney in the development of cultural placemaking and multidisciplinary public art projects. From 2017 to 2018 Lucy was Executive Director of Research Centres at the Royal College of Art, leading the establishment of the Intelligent Mobility Research Centre and the Material Science Research Centre.

Paula Orrell

Paula Orrell

National Director, Contemporary Visual Arts Network

Paula joins CVAN bringing extensive experience as a Curator and Director, with a deep understanding of contemporary art both domestically and internationally, from grassroots organisations to larger governing bodies. Paula’s experience and passion for social, economic, and environmental change within communities are reflective of the ambitious plans that have been expressed for taking CVAN forward.

Paula Orrell spent the early part of her career invested in Plymouth’s cultural development in 2006. She was the curator of Plymouth Arts Centre and Artistic Director of the River Tamar Project. Paula has worked with and commissioned artists such as Lucy Orta, Marina Abramovic, John Akomfrah, Melanie Manchot and produced citywide exhibitions, including the Hayward touring exhibition British Art Show 7 in 2011. Paula’s ten years led to working in New Zealand as the Director of Contemporary Art Christchurch Toi Moroki – transforming a gallery space from a conservative artist society to a bilingual public art gallery as part of the social transformation of the city post-earthquake. Touring exhibitions of David Shrigley and commissioning the first significant exhibition in fourteen years of Paemanu–Ngai Tahu Contemporary Visual Arts.


Are you look to support your graduating students with their end of year projects?

As you may know ArtsThread created an app for the Global Design Graduate Show and another for the British Fashion Council in 2020. ArtsThread to create one for your institution. Please see an example here

ArtsThread can create an app for your university which would house all of your students online portfolios. This can be embedded on to your own university website. The students work can easily be filtered by course & specialism, so you find exactly what you are looking for in seconds!  Find out more here

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