The Wonders of a Gifted Board – Chapter 1!

Keith Arrowsmith                                                     Photography of Duncan Elliott


A great day with lawyer Keith Arrowsmith, ( – who knew a lawyer could be so tech-savvy!  He absolutely understands how to maximise the potential of the internet for communications purposes – I learned more, and certainly more interesting and more useful, stuff from him in a half day session than any of the so-called social media courses that I’ve been on!  This is a professional who really knows how to exploit online comms –

But it’s not just a question of using Twitter, Fb etc – this is maximising open source software; really understanding how to maximise the services available for free from Google; how to design your website to work to maximum impact and minimal cost – and more and more……   he started the day running a CidaCo workshop for STAY (Yorkshire’s branch of Sustained Theatre) practitioners, looking at business legal structures and then moving on to look at IP in particular.  Copyright, trademarks and patents made comprehensible!  I’m going to be putting ‘tm’ on everything!!

Then, in the afternoon, back in the CidaCo office, we looked at developing a new on-line service specifically for our African clients – at Keith’s request, we had a very cool young tech designer, Callum,  to help us sort out how we could make things happen.  We’re going to be setting up a resource site for clients which will probably be our first toe-dipping into on-line learning  –  It’ll be the innovation process training first, then we can add on our creative enterprise training, and, especially, our on line mentoring, which then becomes accessible to clients all over the world.  It could be a really useful part of the ACP bid we’re putting together with partners in a number of African and Caribbean countries.

Keith, of course, is our Company Secretary and has been a fantastic member of our Board for years now. If any of you saw the recent Channel 4 programme Bank of Dave, you  will have seen Keith as adviser to Dave Fishwick, coming up with the solution that made the dream come true! Keith prides himself on being the one that always asks the awkward questions at Board meetings, which is true – he does!  but his absolute commitment to what and why CidaCo exists means that his awkward questions are always tackled in the knowledge that, where necessary, he will help us identify solutions or, if necessary, support us in deciding we are on the wrong path.  A few years ago, he won the Arts & Business award for Best Board Member and, in CidaCo, we fully understand why!!