Levenshulme Old Library

Team and Trustees

LOL CIO is a Charity. We encourage the community to get involved in running the space as a volunteer, member or trustee. Support our small staff team to develop the building and grounds.


Volunteers offer hands-on, practical support
Members have more involvement as users helping to shape the space.
Trustees have responsibility for the CIO and building on a voluntary basis.
The Chair, Treasurer and Secretary roles are nominated annually.
Staff manage day to day operations and events in the building.

Action groups

Building/space: Maintaining and developing the physical assets at LOL CIO (Repairs, structural changes, display, outdoors)
Programme: Shaping and delivering the offer for our local community, coordinating events, bookings and member engagement
Finance: Supporting the sustainability via funding and budget advice and support
Communications: Supporting our communications and digital profile (social media, website, news and engagement)
Resource: Oversight of staff, trustee and volunteer roles to ensure we’re an inclusive organisation offering varied ways to get involved.
Governance: Guidance and support around our policies, procedures, monitoring and evaluation

Our Trustees

Our Board of Trustees are a group of local residents. They work in diverse careers, bringing a range of skills to LOL, but all of them share a desire to provide a shared community space for Levenshulme that aims to help improve the lives of those who use it.

Laura Carroll (Chair of Trustees)

Laura is the Chair at Levensulme Old Library. In her professional life she is a voice coach and has taught in acting schools both in London and the North West for the past 15 years. This has afforded her the opportunity to work with writers, directors, movement practitioners and of course aspiring actors and artists ranging from classical to contemporary works. She is thrilled to be a part of Levenshulme Old Library’s continued development and contributions to the community


Harriet Morgan-Shami (Trustee)

Harriet has worked in engagement and participation for over 20 years in community arts organisations, theatres, galleries, charities, museums and academia. She is an experienced creative producer particularly interested in developing projects that use stories and writing as a starting point to engage marginalised communities in high quality arts and heritage experiences.

Ali Fletcher (Trustee)

Ali has lived in Levenshulme since 2015, and fell in love with the beautiful old library building the first time she saw it! Over the last 20 years, she’s worked at arts organisations around the country, including The Crucible and Yvonne Arnaud theatres, contemporary orchestra London Sinfonietta, Art Fund and Arts Council England. She started her career in a community arts centre down south – the same place she attended art classes as a child – and knowing what an impact it had on her, she’s really excited to be supporting LOL’s ambition to be a vibrant arts space for the whole community.

Noel Connolly (Trustee)

Noel has lived in the area for over 40 years. Over the last 20 years, he has worked in Railway Programme Management throughout the UK, including delivery of Manchester Victoria Station Redevelopment and National Roll out of Railway Telecommunications. Throughout his career, he has been keen to promote an inclusive work force and preserve the wonderful buildings and history of our railways. This is a key reason for him being involved as a trustee in LOL. He would like to see the building cared for and enhanced, for the use of all in Levenshulme, and the surrounding areas.

Staff Team

Laura Deane (Manager – Fundraising, Programming, Outreach)

Laura has lived in Levenshulme since 2006. She is currently raising her two children here and used to bring her baby daughter to the Library every week!

She has taught 16-19 year olds in the Arts since 2006, as well as stints working in community art organisations and delivering arts workshops and exhibition curation/management. She also works as a freelance artist/photographer, selling and exhibiting work. Laura is a Director of MCRLoT and a Trustee at Islington Mill Foundation, as well as managing Levenshulme’s ‘Window Gallery’ and co-authoring Levenshulme News.

Laura began working as Building Co-ordinator in September 2019, and has worked up to managing the organisation, with an amazing staff team around her. She loves working at LOL because she wants to be involved in building an even stronger creative community in Levenshulme.


Jason Cooke (Bookings and Facilities Manager)

Jason manages the building management, coordinates users and generally mucks in with the numerous tasks our building yields. He also works for North Manchester FM, co-presents Charity Shop Classics on ALL FM (Sundays 11am) and runs Comedy Balloon, the longest running open mic comedy night in Manchester.

Active in arts & performance since 1986, he’s appeared on the same bills as John Cooper Clarke & Frank Sidebottom, has toured with Hawkwind, performed comedy in the Shetland Islands & provided occasional soundtracks for film and television.


Richard Hirst (Manager – Programming, Comms, Development)

Richard has lived in Levenshulme since 2010 and in that time has worked with a number of local community organisations and arts charities. 


Neil Barton (Caretaker)
Neil is our fantastic caretaker, who cleans and maintains the building. He works for us because he is dedicated to helping to keep our community building open. Neil is also a maths teacher so if he is not wielding a brush or help a theatre company with a get-in, he is probably trying to work out just how many leaves will fall on the Old Library grounds before Autumn is over.

Jen Wilkinson (Trustee and Membership Manager)
Jen joined LOL in August 2022 to help support the work of the Trustees. A local resident and community activist, she is looking forward to getting involved in the organisation and being the first point of contact with our trustees.



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