Damian Walford Davies (Chair)
Poet, literary critic/theorist and editor. He is Professor of English and Head of the School of English, Communication & Philosophy at Cardiff University. The main fields of his research and practice are Romanticism, twentieth-century and contemporary poetry, and Creative Writing. His most recent publication is the edited collection, Roald Dahl: Wales of the Unexpected (University of Wales Press, 2016); recent poetry collections include Judas (Seren 2015), Alabaster Girls (Rack Press, 2015), and Witch (Seren, 2012). Two collaborative, bilingual volumes – Poets’ Graves/Beddau’r Beirdd (Gomer 2014) and Ancestral Houses: The Lost Mansions of Wales/Tai Mawr a Mieri: Plastai Coll Cymru (Gomer 2012) – exemplify his interest in the dynamic between word and image. He has just completed a fin de siècle ghost story in verse entitled Docklands. His next project is Go! Go! Gino Bartali – a poetic engagement with the legendary Italian winner of the Tour de France.
Kate North (Deputy Chair)
Kate North is a writer and academic. Her novel, Eva Shell, came out in 2008 and her poetry collection, Bistro, in 2012. She has taught in universities and community settings for over a decade. She has interests in experimental poetry and fiction, and in applications of writing practice in healthcare and community environments. She teaches at Cardiff Metropolitan University.
Justin Albert is the Director of National Trust Wales. A dual national Welsh-American Justin previously enjoyed a long and successful career in broadcasting and film production. He is a vice president of the Hay Festival, Trustee of Hay Castle Trust, Executive Director of International National Trust Organisation and Trustee of the Center for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies.
William Ayot is a poet, playwright, coach and social entrepreneur. Having worked in rehab and prisons, he led men’s rites of passage retreats in Snowdonia before teaching leadership in organisations and business schools around the world. In 2009, he set up the poetry series, On the Border in Chepstow, and later founded NaCOT, (National Centre for the Oral Tradition) which celebrates story, poetry and public speaking, while putting them to work in the community. Writing includes the play Bengal Lancer and three collections of poetry.
Eric Ngalle Charles
Eric Ngalle Charles is a poet, dramatist and novelist, originally from Buea in Cameroon. He runs Black Entertainment Wales, an arts organisation that provides a platform for artists in BME communities to showcase their work. In his work he explores the links between literature and trauma to look at how creativity can be used as a means of overcoming trauma.
Elizabeth was raised in Criccieth and moved to Aberystwyth to study law at University. Elizabeth worked as a Solicitor in London for many years followed by periods of working abroad in countries such as Germany, America and Nigeria. She returned to Criccieth to run a local business, cafe and gallery, she now works as Director of Development for OPRA Cymru. Elizabeth is a trustee for the Friends of Lloyd George Museum and Criccieth Memorial Hall.
Angharad has worked on cultural projects including the foundation of the National Botanic Garden of Wales, the Millennium Celebrations, the first two highly successful UKinNY festivals in New York and was part of the founding team of Wales Millennium Centre where she worked as Head of Media and Communications. For the past seven years, Angharad has run a successful marketing and communications consultancy specialising in the music, tourism and cultural sectors. She is a writer, regularly contributing articles to a broad range of tourism, culture and arts publications, a published author and is currently undertaking PhD research in Creative Writing at Bangor University.