(c) Jon Craig
(c) Jon Craig
(c) Jon Craig
(c) Jon Craig

Festival Team

Rich Warren

Festival Director

Dave Taylor-Matthews

Festival Producer

Kieran Argo

Animation Programmer

Gaia Meucci-Astley

Short Film Programmer

Madeleine Probst

Associate Programmer (DepicT!)

Steven Coombe

Burnside Chartered Accountants

Alice Cabanas


Mark Cosgrove

Film Consultant

Becky Megson

Marketing Coordinator


Board Members

The Encounters board of trustees are a dedicated group of experts from a variety of industries who are responsible for the governance and strategic direction of the festival and our other charitable work.

Chair - Simon Perry

After 10 years as an independent film producer, Simon Perry headed the UK’s national film agency British Screen between 1991 and 2000. He then ran the Irish Film Board between 2006 and 2010, and was head of international production funding at Sweden's largest regional film fund during 2015-2016. He is president of ACE Producers, provider of advanced film production training worldwide.

Paul Appleby

Paul is the director of VID, a media consultancy working with BBC, Bristol University, ARKive, Creative Skillset and Bristol City Council developing collaborations in multiplatform media and sustainable production, and developing strategies for economic growth and talent development.

Lynn Barlow

Journalist and producer Lynn's career spans newspapers, radio and television. At the BBC she series produced Barristers, Silverville and Anatomy of a Crime which won Grierson Best documentary series and three RTS awards. She now divides her time as Creative Director for the Faculty of Arts, Creative Industries and Education at UWE, Bristol and as a freelance producer. She is also a board member of Wildscreen.

Rosa Corbishley

Rosa is currently Head of Development at Bristol Music Trust/Colston Hall.
Rosa has previously worked at Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra as Head of Development, at Salisbury International Arts Festival as Development and Communications Manager and at Chester Festivals as Director.

Jon Gill

Jon is a Corporate Partner at TLT, the Bristol-headquartered national law firm, where he focuses on venture capital, private equity and M&A transactions in the technology and media sectors. He leads TLT's work with fast growth companies, holds an MSc in Entrepreneurship (Distinction) from the University of Bristol and is the author of "Business Law for the Entrepreneur". He is also a member of the Advisory Board of Engine Shed, Bristol's innovation hub.

Lisa Howe

A skills and talent development consultant, Lisa headed up the 2017 re-shape of Creative Skillset’s Film skills fund and led on Creative England’s skills strategy, covering professional development for talent and crew in Film, Games & Digital. She also set up the training strand of the iFeatures first-feature initiative. A former Interactive Producer, including at Peter Gabriel’s Real World, Lisa brings over 20 years of single and multi-platform production experience.

Will Massa

Will is Curator of Contemporary Fiction Film at the BFI. He works in the archive ensuring contemporary film is comprehensively represented withing the national film and television collection. From 2011-2017 will was Senior Programme Manager for the British Council's Film department where he advised the organisation's offices in the Americas and EU Europe on their year-round film activity, creating contexts for international exchange and collaboration. He oversaw the Short Film Travel Grant Fund run in partnership with the BFI and was responsible for international promotion of UK short film. He is also a freelance project assessor and script editor.

James Mullighan

South Australian James was appointed Creative Director, Cork Film Festival, in May 2013.
Recently James was Chief Executive Officer of Transmedia Next, and in 2011 he directed the 65th Edinburgh International Film Festival. Before that he ran Shooting People and RESFEST’s UK, Irish and Australian tours.

Alison Sterling

Alison is a film producer with Ignition Films: her debut feature film, Flying Blind, was released in 2013, and she is currently working on a slate of 3 further features and a TV series. She previously made eight short films, several of which have been selected for Encounters Festival.

Sarah Cox

In 2017 Sarah became Executive Creative Director of New Content at Aardman and is responsible for developing brand new IP for children and families across broadcast and digital platforms.
After 10 years as a commercials director in London Sarah set up the production company 'ArthurCox' with Sally Arthur in 2002 to produce commercials, shorts and broadcast projects.

David Sproxton

David Sproxton is the co-founder and Executive Chairman of Aardman. Together with co-founder Peter Lord, he has overseen the development of the company from a two-man partnership to one of the pre-eminent animation houses in the industry.

Liz Harkman

Liz Harkman is a driven & enthusiastic creative producer with a wealth of experience in running small charities and project consultancy. She has a love of culture and the arts and a long term passion for film & festivals.

Liz has developed the ability to work on multiple projects at the same time with excellent time management skills. She works well both as part of a team and autonomously and has experience of working locally, nationally and internationally.

Catherine Allen

Catherine led the creation of two of the BBC's first VR experiences and now enables leading arts venues to screen VR with her company, Limina Immersive. Her work is known for bringing VR to broader audiences who wouldn't describe themselves as early adopters. She won a Marie Claire Future Shapers award 2018 for her work shaping the UK VR sector and has judged VR for Sheffield Doc Fest, Encounters and Raindance film festivals. Catherine produced the BBC’s first commissioned VR documentary, the award-winning Easter Rising: Voice of a Rebel, which has toured festivals globally, showed for six weeks at the National Theatre in London and was described by Broadcast Magazine as 'genre-defining'. In her spare time she writes for Wired magazine and sees a lot of theatre. Before VR, Catherine worked at the educational app publisher, Touch Press; winning a BAFTA on the Disney Animated app, with Disney Interactive.

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