About us

mini drum kit with a sticker that says being creative makes you feel good

Who we are 

hoot creative arts is an arts and mental health charity based in the town centre of Huddersfield, England. We offer a diverse range of creative activities that support mental health and emotional wellbeing. We have been running for 20 years.

hoot is an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation. We are jointly commissioned by Kirklees Council, Kirklees and NHS Integrated Care Board to provide the adult mental health and creativity programme across Kirklees. We also work with other local charities as part of the Working Together Better partnership. We were the Health and Wellbeing lead for Kirklees Year of Music 2023.

Our delivery is for a range of groups and settings and includes :

  • Adult Mental Health services
  • People living with a diagnosis of dementia and their carer
  • End of life health services
  • Criminal Justice System
  • Wellbeing at Work
  • Children & Young People’s projects
  • Supported Residential settings
  • Safe and Secure digital platforms

Quality for Health and Wellbeing Level Two LogoAge Friendly Standards LogoWell Good Charter Logo



History and ethos

Creative Expression, making a mark and being seen and heard is fundamental to being human. We believe that we all have a creative and imaginative capacity that is of central importance to our mental and physical health, wellbeing and happiness.

Our aim at hoot is to nurture and support your recognition and use of this creative capacity. We recognise that care and maintenance of our mental health is a normal and vital part of our lives and working creatively with the experienced, skilled and compassionate team at hoot help people to establish creative self care techniques.

Inclusion, Diversity and Equity in the Arts

Prompted by the resurgence of Black Lives Matter in 2020 we challenged our individual behaviour, practices and unconscious biases and this continues professionally in our recruitment (of staff and participants), programming and marketing. We encourage everyone associated with hoot to raise questions and challenge as this is the only way we will make real progress as an organisation, as individuals and as a community.

About Arts and Health

Recognition of the links between Arts & Health or between Culture, Health and Wellbeing have existed since modern humans emerged between 200,000 to 100,000 years ago. Telling a story, singing it in a song, painting an image of it or writing it down - the aim is the same - to come together, be heard and/or seen and enjoy the connection and community bond that creates. That fundamental need for human connection that the arts, culture and in particular participatory arts with its shared creative engagement provides is vital and partcularly evident during the height of the pandemic in 2020-21.

Over the last 20 years the evidence base has grown and Arts & Health has become more accepted by the infrastructure around arts funding and of the health service. If in doubt just remember our phrase and you won’t go far wrong….Being Creative Makes You Feel Good.

Graphic with words saying Being Creative Makes You Feel Good
Graphic with words saying Being Creative Makes You Feel Good

Our team

Here are the lovely folk who work here at hoot

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Tor Mckenzie

Out of the Blue Service Manager

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Gavin Clayton


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Jonathan Milsom

Creative Support Worker

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Holly Petrie

Communications & Public Relations Officer / Participation & Progression Co-ordinator

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Lailla Tanveer

Operations (Finance & Admin) Manager

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Carmel Thomason

Creative Support Worker

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Kathy Griffin

Creative Support Worker

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Rob Crisp

Internal Artist - Music

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Kelly Munro-Fawcett

Project Manager for Creative Pathways and Evoke Creative Health Network Coordinator

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Qudsia Hussain

Communication & Design Officer

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Estelle Cooper

Project Manager

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Sally Barker

Internal Artist (Visual Arts)

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Sharleen Shaha

Project Manager for Kirklees Year of Music

Board of Trustees

Our Board of Trustees

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Peter Lyster

Chair of the Board, hoot

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Jackie Astbury

Director, hoot

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Claire Richardson

Director, hoot

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Jonathan Hague

Director, hoot

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Charlotte Goulding

Director, hoot