As part of our Workforce Development Programme offering professional development for Music Education Hub staff, we are offering one-to-one sessions with expert consultants from the music education world and beyond. 

Marion Friend MBE

Having begun her career after Cambridge University as a teacher and freelance musician, Marion held senior management positions in prestigious organisations for over twenty-five years, including as Director of Junior Trinity at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, and at Wigmore Hall, BBC Television Music and Arts and Philharmonia Orchestra. This range of knowledge and experience informs her work as a coach, mentor, facilitator and consultant. Clients range from students to chief executives, teachers, administrators, performers and composers. Marion has worked with hub leads and other senior staff including at conferences (Music Mark, Music Teachers Association, Musicians Union) and for the Hub Support Programme spearheaded by Sound Connections and Music Mark. Marion's coaching and mentoring focuses on professional development, and offering support in building skills and confidence. 

Music Mark (via the Workforce Development Programme) will fund up to two coaching sessions per person with Marion. Sessions can be arranged by emailing [email protected] with the subject line 'Music Mark Coaching'.

If you need to cancel or reschedule a booked session, our policy is that you must give 48 hours notice to Marion by email. Due to high demand and limited availabilty, sessions can only be rescheduled once. 

Carmel Cardona

Trained in brain-based coaching methods, Carmel has 20 years of experience coaching and leading individuals and teams, helping people thrive in their roles and overcome challenges. She works 1:1 with clients to help them build resilience and flexibility in life and work, to be stronger, wiser and more capable. Carmel is the founder of social enterprise Stitch Your Parachute, building personal and organisational resilience. She delivers training and 1:1 coaching in resilience, leadership and wellbeing. She provides strategic consultancy to organisations in the cultural and social impact sectors, conducting evaluation reports, research and facilitation. She brings knowledge from two decades in senior leadership in the cultural sector to this work, as well as training from the LSE and the NeuroLeadership Institute.

As well as being able to advise on strategic planning, youth voice and evaluation, Carmel’s coaching specialisms include coaching for menopause, return to work coaching, and health coaching.

Music Mark (via the Workforce Development Programme) will fund up to two coaching sessions per person with Marion. Sessions can be arranged by emailing [email protected] with the subject line 'Music Mark Coaching'

If you need to cancel or reschedule a booked session, our policy is that you must give 48 hours notice to Carmel by email. 


Samantha Stimpson

Samantha Stimpson is the Founder and Chief Executive of SLS 360.  Equity, Diversity and Inclusion consultants who specialise in working within the Arts & Music sector. Sam founded SLS 360 in 2021 after 20 years working in the Music Education sector as Assistant Head of a Music Education Hub in London, Music Advisor and Ethnic Minority Achievement Consultant. She, and her team of associates, deliver bespoke consultancy services for organisations and training and workshops on a range of topics including inclusive leadership and the diversification of the music curriculum. Sam also provides coaching to senior leaders, EDI leads and individuals from racially underrepresented groups.

In April 2021, Samantha created the first report on Workforce diversity within Music Education Hubs in London, commissioned by Music Mark, which explores the inequality and disparity that exists in the sector. The report highlighted a need to take action and lead to a sector-wide response and the creation of the Talk into Action movement.

Having spent most of her working life as the only one, or one of few leaders of colour in this sector, driven by a desire for change, she now uses her voice, knowledge and expertise to challenge and support individuals and organisations take action to affect meaningful change in the field of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

To book your slot click HERE.

When you book you will be invited to answer a few questions to provide information in order to focus the session.

If you need to cancel or reschedule a booked session, our policy is that you must give 48 hours notice to Sam by email. 

Gary Griffiths

Gary Griffiths worked in music services for twenty years, managing the peripatetic service in Essex and then leading the Music Education Hub for the London Borough of Havering.  He has a wide range of experience and is available to provide 1:1 support in the following areas:

  • Business planning 
  • Organisational change and restructuring 
  • The interface between Local Authority finances and the Arts Council 
  • Grantium
  • Health & Safety (IOSH trained), especially Covid-19
  • HR: pensions, TUPE, IR35, Parental leave
  • HR: investigations (disciplinary, safeguarding, grievances)
  • Writing trustee and staff handbooks
  • Intermediate to advanced Excel skills

He is also happy to be a sounding board and/or a critical friend and can make links with other Music Education Hubs across the country.

To book a session with Gary, email him at [email protected] or book straight into his diary at https://garygriffiths.appointlet.com

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