Trustees

Rothesay Pavilion is a single tier SCIO governed by a voluntary Board of Trustees. Given the Pavilion's role as both a community hub and a major venue and tourist attraction, the membership of the Board combines local and national representation, with over half the membership are permanent Bute residents. The following Trustees currently make up the Board.

Dr Nick Merriman (Chair)

Dr Nick Merriman has been chair of Rothesay Pavilion since its inception in 2014 and has been a regular visitor to Bute for over a decade, having a house on the island for many years. He recently moved to become Chief Executive of the Horniman Museum & Gardens in London after running Manchester Museum for 12 years. He has worked at the Museum of London and at University College London and has been chair of numerous national bodies including the Council for British Archaeology and the Collections Trust. 

John Thomas (Treasurer)

Edinburgh born, John Thomas grew up in Cheshire and moved to Bute in 2010. Following an arts education, his professional career has been spent in a variety of positions in further education, culminating in the positon of Head of Foundation and Head of Art & Design at Manchester College. He undertook projects with Royal Northern College of Music, Bridgewater Hall, Library Theatre, and study visits in UK, Ireland, Spain and New York. He is now director of a Manchester-based childcare company and is married with four children and six grandchildren. He joined the Board in 2014. He is a permanent Bute resident.

Dorothy McDonald (Secretary)

Dorothy McDonald is the founder and manager of Achievement Bute, a voluntary organisation which promotes the full inclusion of children with disabilities in community life.  During the past 15 years they have worked with a number of arts organisations including Giant Productions; Birds of Paradise Theatre Company; Y-Dance and RSNO collaborating to produce high quality experiential arts events for children. Dorothy joined the Board in 2014, becoming company secretary in 2016. Dorothy is a permanent Bute resident.

Emma Cooper (Trustee)

Emma Cooper has over 15 years’ experience in senior roles in the voluntary sector, most recently as the first Chief Executive of Scottish Rural Action, establishing a national organisation with a growing reputation for influencing policy and decision-making, as well as raising the profile of rural communities and needs in Scotland. Prior to this appointment, she was Executive Officer for Bute Community Forest, the role that prompted her move to Bute.  As a permanent resident of Bute, Emma cofounded ButeFest music festival in 2015, where she still acts as Treasurer and Head of Marketing. Emma joined the Board in 2014.

Peter Griffiths (Trustee)

Peter Griffiths has been involved in marketing since the nineties in industries including renewables, plant equipment, architecture, and forklift trucks. Peter is currently Marketing Manager for CalMac Ferries, which delivers tourism and lifeline ferry services to the west coast of Scotland including Bute. As well as a full time marketing person, Peter is a part time gig-goer, occasional DJ, and pretend drummer. He once co-authored a guide on the safe siting of wind turbines and invented the “Seppie Special” pizza. In his spare time, Peter enjoys writing about himself in the third person.

Simon Groom (Trustee)

Simon Groom graduated with a degree in English Literature from Edinburgh University, and an MA and PhD in Art History from the Courtauld Institute of Art, London. He worked as the curator at Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge, before becoming Head of Exhibitions at Tate Liverpool, where he curated numerous exhibitions of modern and contemporary international art, before being appointed Director of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh. He has played an active role in many institutions, including Governor of Glasgow School of Art, Member of the National Cultural Diplomacy Group, Arts Advisory Group and Acquisitions Committee at the British Council, and is on the Advisory Board of Art UK. Simon is a regular visitor to Bute.

Allison Harley (Trustee)

Allison Harley has lived on Bute for 16 years and joined the Board of Rothesay Pavilion in 2016. Originally moving to the island to restore and run a large hotel with her husband, Allison now owns and runs a gift shop in the centre of Rothesay. She has two children who have both grown up on the island and is keen to promote the opportunities the Pavilion can offer to young people once the works have been completed. 

Nicola Jones (Trustee)

Nicola Jones joined the Board in 2014.  A native of Ardrishaig, she returned to Argyll in 2000 after graduating in multimedia and art, and has won awards for innovation, teaching and digital media. On moving to Bute more than 14 years ago, Nicola turned her attention to capturing the colours and scenes of the island in her unique style. Her flair for design led to her creating a clothing brand for dancers which she now runs from Rothesay. Nicola has initiated and run many community projects over the years, working inclusively to create sustainable community assets to empower the next generation. 

Lisa Kapur (Trustee)

Lisa is Arts Officer at the City of Edinburgh Council and works on the delivery of the culture strategy within the city, including cultural grant funding. Lisa has held posts with a range of national and public sector cultural organisations, including Creative Scotland, the Scottish Arts Council and the National Galleries of Scotland. She has project managed the set-up of high profile new initiatives, including the National Theatre of Scotland, the Youth Music Initiative and the inaugural Edinburgh Art Festival. Lisa lives in Edinburgh with her husband and daughter and is a regular visitor to Bute.

Catrin Kemp (Trustee)

Catrin Kemp is Assistant Director at Cove Park, Scotland's international artist residency, on Loch Long, running a year round programme of artists’ residencies, attracting companies and individuals from Turner and Booker Prize winners to emergent artists. Catrin oversees income generation elements of the programme and supports the running of Cove Park's 50-acre site and buildings. With over 15 years’ experience in running major cultural events and programme activity for Scottish and U.K. based companies (from NVA to Wellcome Collection). Catrin joined the Board of Rothesay Pavilion in 2014 and lives in Glasgow with her husband and baby son. 

Janet McAlister (Trustee)

Janet McAlister lives in Rothesay and works as Technical Services Director for Fyne Homes. She has over 24 years’ experience in the social housing sector, with direct involvement in the areas of repairs, maintenance, capital improvements and new build. Janet is also Director and Chair of Standing Tall Arts, an organisation set up to deliver arts activities for unaccompanied minors living in Scotland. Janet joined the Board of Rothesay Pavilion in 2016

Tim Saul (Trustee)

Chairman of the Isle of Bute Jazz Festival and restaurant owner, Tim Saul lives on Bute. A passionate jazz musician, he is also involved with other community organisations, as a director of Bute Berthing Company, the Bute Community Band and the Port Bannatyne Moorings association. He is also a member of the judging panel for the Scottish Jazz Awards and plays guitar in the gypsy jazz quartet, Les Gitanes, based on Bute. Tim joined the Board in 2014 and is a permanent resident of Bute.

Phyllis Steel (Trustee)

Phyllis Steel currently supports artists and arts organisations through mentoring programmes, artistic and organisational development and business planning. She has worked with a number of major arts venues and festivals in Scotland either as artistic director or guest programmer, touring theatre, dance and music nationally/internationally. Phyllis has served as a Specialist Adviser for Creative on Gaelic Arts, Disability Arts, Capital Projects, Dance and Children’s Arts. She has served on the Board of some eight arts organisations and venues, joining Rothesay Pavilion Board in 2014. Phyllis is a Gestalt-trained coach, mentor and a graduate of the University of Strathclyde. Phyllis is a resident of both Bute and Paisley.