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Meet Aster

Monday, 18 December


Hello! Nice to meet ya. I’m Aster, one of the people lucky enough to be a Community Engagement Officer for Live & Local’s Rural Hub Towns project. That’s a bit of a mouthful, but it’s essentially working with small-town communities to make cool arty stuff happen. Right now, I’m developing some cracking projects in Coleshill and Uttoxeter – so if you’re local and not already involved, please feel free to drop me a line to find out more!

I’ve dipped my toes (and sometimes a whole leg) into lots of different art stuff. I studied visual arts at college and uni, taught life drawing in dingy rooms above pubs, ran a theatre company until my co-director and I fell out of love with each other, promoted some of the best rock and metal club nights you’ve never heard of, organised a pride festival around my kitchen table (that is, the paperwork, not the event itself… that was in a park) and most recently, developed a community museum in rural Wales that dares to ask the question; what can people’s personal stories tell us about our collective past, present and future?

Here’s a list of things I’m deeply passionate about, in no particular order…

  • Nature appreciation & climate justice
  • Car boot sales
  • Third spaces (public places where people can meet and socialise with no expectation of spending money – libraries are a super example)
  • A bit of dodgy DIY about the house
  • LGBT+ rights
  • Folklore (especially the spooky stuff)
  • Having a good sit down and a natter
  • Desire paths (paths worn into verges, etc by people collectively deciding that way is better/more direct than the official pavement)
  • Halloween
  • Cakes
  • Craftivism



When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up?

An Egyptologist, for sure. I watched The Mummy with Brendan Fraser and Rachel Weisz at an impressionable age and became unapologetically unhinged about ancient Egypt. I can still tell you an alarming amount of fun facts about Ancient Egypt, so please let me know if you want to hear them (and please let me know when you’d like to stop hearing them).

Do you have a personal motto you live by or any favourite inspirational quotes?

'Knowledge is power, ignorance is a cage and emotions CAN be dealt with.' – Hannah Gadsby.

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Cats or dogs? I’ve got 3 cats who can probably read, so I will say cats.

Tea or coffee? Coffee in the AM, Tea in the PM. Love a posh loose-leaf herbal tea as well.

Cheese or chocolate? I’d have both, possibly even in the same mouthful.

Beach or mountains? Both, so long as I have friends to enjoy them with.

Winter or Summer? Winter. Unpopular opinion here in the UK, but I love to retreat into the deep shadows of a big jumper and get really cosy. Hot chocolate. Snow sculptures. Sledging. What’s not to love?

Morning person or night owl? I’ve been aspiring to become a morning person now I’m grown up, but I think I will always be a night owl at heart.

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