Chair Recruitment

Acorn Theatre




The Acorn is a progressive performing arts and cultural charity serving the local community of Penzance and West Cornwall with a mission to connect communities through culture and creativity.   It has been an important community asset for more than five decades and with the help of our wonderful volunteers, serves some of the most economically deprived, disadvantaged and rural communities in Cornwall and England.

Due to the upcoming retirement of our long-serving Chair, we are seeking to appoint a replacement to support the Theatre Manager and lead our wider team in taking the charity forward. We are beginning our search for a new Chair in turbulent times and need to ensure that the organisation remains resilient, financially stable and ambitious, seizing the opportunities ahead to continue to deliver our Mission.

Thanks to recent successful fundraising initiatives, the Acorn has been completely refurbished and has healthy financial reserves and strong forward bookings and ticket sales to deliver its charitable objectives.  We provide a high-quality cultural programme of live music and performing arts, support local groups and organisations, nurture local creative talent and Cornish heritage, and host weekly community carts lasses and other events to give access to the arts to a wide audience.  Between 2022 and 2026 we aim to develop our outreach work to economically deprived areas of Penzance/West Penwith.

As Chair, you and the Board of Trustees will provide strategic direction, governance and assurance for this small but vibrant charity, supporting the Theatre Manager and wider team whilst leading the charity to reach its full creative potential and remain financially resilient.

The role requires strong interpersonal skills and emotional intelligence, business acumen and calm, sound judgement in decision making. Ideally, we are also seeking someone who has a knowledge of charity fundraising or an understanding of the importance of fundraising.

If you have a passion for arts, cultural and creative industries and would like to make a positive contribution to the sector, we would be delighted to hear from you.

We are particularly keen to hear from people who are from groups under-represented in the performing arts and at Board level.

How to Apply

Please download the attached brief for further information and details of how to apply. If you are interested in this opportunity, we encourage confidential conversations with our recruitment partner Anna Jay (MD of Public Leaders Appointments)  or 07904 236 348,  or our current Chair, Paul Mullin, via or 07903 938 672 in advance of your application.


  • Start of Recruitment process: Tuesday, 1st November 2022.
  • Open invitation to interested parties to visit the Theatre, meet Claire Belsham, Vice Chair, and Richie Cawley, Theatre Manager, w/c 21st November 2022, by appointment.
  • Closing dates for applications: Midday on Monday, 28th November
  • Interviews: Thursday, 1st December or Friday 2nd December

Note: The current Chair will be available in December & January for induction and handover.

Candidate BriefStrategic PlanStatement & Accounts