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Jewellery Quarter Research Trust


Douglas Wilks | Trustee and Chair

Doug, who is married to Pauline, worked for many years as a design engineer, studied music and was a church musician before entering the ministry in 1982. Ordained in 1988 he served both as a local church Minister and as a Chaplain to a number of nursing and residential homes. In 2003 he took up a position as Chaplain with the Community Churches Alliance. He is very interested in local history, heritage and family history.


Sue Chilton | Trustee and Treasurer

Born 1952 in Loveday Street, with the exception of 4 years in Herefordshire, Sue has always lived in Birmingham, and was educated in Harborne and Edgbaston. Over the years she has been treasurer of several charitable organisations and has an accountancy practice in the Jewellery Quarter. Now that her four children are fledged she spends time indulging her interests including social, natural and local history, and the WI.

Louise Deakin | Trustee Vice Chair and Engagement  Director

Louise is Director of Engagement, leading a small team to develop events and social media content. She works for Birmingham Museums Trust and has delivered activity on behalf of Heritage Lottery and Birmingham City Council on the Stirchley Baths project. She is passionate about equality and diversity within the Heritage sector and specialises in Dementia-friendly programming. 


Phil O’Dell | Trustee and Official Photographer

After careers with the ABC circuit as a  projectionist, the British Red Cross and Welfare Officer for a disability club, Phil now works in the funeral profession. After many years in other occupations, he feels he has found his true calling. He also has an interest in the beliefs and superstitions of the Victorians - which fits in very well with the work of JQRT. 


The Jewellery Quarter Research Trust was established in 2009 by Dick Empson and Doug Wilks. It was decided that access to records of the cemeteries should be free. Dick organised most of the research and researchers but sadly died in 2013 so that task has for now passed to Doug Wilks.

Amy Hoult | Engagement Coordinator

Amy is a Birmingham based artist and engagement specialist. Having studied Fine Art at Birmingham City University, she works with community groups, youth groups and local charities, creating mindful workshops and applied arts experiences to encourage and inspire. She is a strong believer that the Arts should be accessible for all and can positively impact the lives of individuals. 

Laura-Beth Green | Digital Content Coordinator

I studied English with Creative Writing at the University of Birmingham, before going to work with Birmingham Museums Trust. I have an avid interest in writing and sharing stories

Nicola Trenbath | Digital Content Researcher

Originally from Wales, Niki moved to the Midlands 5 years ago to study her Masters degree in Literature, Culture and Modernity: Victorian and Modernist. She is a big fan of industry and the history of the Jewellery Quarter. Facts are her big love which is why she’s a pub quiz champion.  

Joanna Kemp | Project Team Leader

Joanna moved to the West Midlands in 2008 for University. 10 years and a PhD in Classics and Ancient History later, Joanna stayed in the Midlands and has worked as a heritage educator with a focus on community engagement for a number of years. After working at Medieval castles, historic farms, nuclear bunkers, and jewellery and needle factories, in 2019 she began working on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion for local organisations.