The Music Venue Trust (MVT) has appointed five of the charity’s freelance consultants to permanent roles to support the expanding membership of its Music Venues Alliance network.

Rebecca Walker has been appointed live projects coordinator. She joined MVT in March 2021 on a freelance contract to coordinate The National Lottery’s Revive Live tour and will now report directly to MVT CEO Mark Davyd. Walker had previously spent 11 years at Sheffield’s LeadmilI venue where she last held the role of senior promoter.

Jay Taylor and Sophie Asquith have taken up the positions of MVT Coordinators in England. The pair both became freelance coordinators in April 2020 and worked to support venues in NW England and London respectively as part of a wider regional team until October 2021. Taylor has worked for the Musicians Union, SJM Concerts, PRS Foundation, Sound City Festival and In the City Festival. Asquith spent six years as general manager and booker at London’s Bush Hall (cap. 400).

The pair will be the primary point of contact for MVT member venues and will report to venue support manager Clara Cullen. They will also work with COO Beverley Whitrick to appoint and develop a team of coordinators across the UK.

Matthew Otridge, who started working as a promoter in Bristol venues 20 years ago, has been announced as MVT’s lead coordinator on its new initiative #OwnOurVenues. Reporting to Davyd, Otridge has been working with MVT on a freelance basis since 2020, initially as a coordinator for SW England during the pandemic before helping develop the #OwnOurVenues community ownership project.

Chris Sherrington, who previously held the freelance position of MVT Coordinator for NE England has been appointed policy and strategy support officer. Having transitioned into a guidance role, updating the team and membership on legislation and policy during the pandemic, he will report to Davyd while working with Whitrick and Clara Cullen.

Whitrick said, “These permanent appointments of amazing colleagues who have already proven themselves invaluable members of the grassroots music community during an incredibly challenging period for the sector will take MVT’s ability to innovate, advocate and coordinate to a new level. All five bring proven experience, skills, insight and passion to our team and we are delighted to welcome them on board.”