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Richmond Tourist Attraction Appoints General Manager with Experience in the Arts
Friday, Apr 27, 2012
Richmond Tourist Attraction Appoints General Manager with Experience in the Arts
Laura Hannaway
The Station, Richmond, has appointed a new General Manager with an arts and heritage background to steer this increasingly-popular tourist attraction along the next stage of its journey.

Laura Hannaway, 31, will join The Station in its fifth operating year as a new full-time manager. She will report to Station trustees while overseeing staff, volunteers and tenants, and will be tasked with developing the venue, both as a valued social enterprise and as a popular visitor destination.

Miss Hannaway, who is currently working notice as Business Development Manager at Middlesbrough Town Hall, was selected out of 190 applicants for her enthusiasm, creativity, leadership qualities, and track record in income generation. In the last five years, she has revitalised Middlesbrough Town Hall into one of the North-east’s leading concert venue and multi-space arts and heritage centre, increasing its commercial viability and strengthening its business, artistic and community vision.

Trustees of the Richmondshire Buildings Preservation Trust – the voluntary body responsible for The Station – saw valuable parallels between Miss Hannaway’s achievements in Middlesbrough and that of their own vision for the future of The Station.

James Gravenor, Chair of The Station Trust, said: ‘The Station is thriving as a unique venue offering ‘Food, Film, and Art’ under the one roof and attracts more than 350,000 visitors a year. It is a complex mix of commercial and charitable community enterprises. As trustees, we were looking for someone capable of building on this success and introducing new revenue streams, yet at the same time leading and supporting staff and volunteers. It was felt that Laura’s experience at a senior level in developing tourism, leisure, and the arts was of particular relevance.’

Miss Hannaway lives in Darlington but is no stranger to Richmond, having worked at the Georgian Theatre Royal from 2004-06. She also worked in communications for the Arts Council and in Audience Development for Culture and Tourism before moving to Middlesbrough Town Hall.

‘I am absolutely thrilled to have been appointed by the Station trustees and can’t wait to get started in the job,’ she said. ‘I remember visiting The Station when it was just a shell and I was enthused then by the project and couldn’t wait to see it open. I hope that through my knowledge and experience in arts and heritage tourism I will be able to help The Station reach its full potential both commercially and as a community resource. It is my aim to work in a collaborative fashion, involving local business and community groups to create an even more successful visitor attraction that everyone is proud to be a part of.’

Miss Hannaway takes up the post on June 6th. 

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