Thurrock Trailblazer © ROH 2018, photograph by Brian Slater
Thurrock Trailblazer © ROH 2018, photograph by Brian Slater

Cultural Champions

In the Schools Application process, schools are asked to identify two representatives as Cultural Champions. These individuals will act as in-school project managers for the programme as part of the Cultural Champion Community. The Thurrock Trailblazer programme also offers them access to high quality Leadership Development Training.

Cultural Champions person specification

Cultural Champions are:

  • ambitious teachers with a strong interest in creative and cultural learning
  • enthusiastic about leading a whole school initiative
  • reflective and generous teachers who recognize the value of collaborative working.
Support for Cultural Champions

Cultural Champions are supported by in-school leadership from members of SLT, Governors and Headteachers, as well as the Thurrock Trailblazer delivery team, who offer leadership, advice and guidance.

Cultural Champions from all Trailblazer schools come together at 4-6 twilight sessions across the academic year to discuss their Trailblazer journeys, share their learning from Trailblazer activities and plan how to measure the impact of arts and cultural activities in their schools.

Find out how to become a Cultural Champion

If you are interested in becoming a Cultural Champion for your Thurrock school and would like to find out more about what this entails, please contact the Trailblazer Team by email to or telephone +44(0)1708 891 200.

Whether you are a returning Cultural Champion or new to the role, your experiences and input into the Cultural Champion sessions will be valuable to the group and you will play an important role in shaping the Trailblazer programme as it develops year on year.

Leaders in Cultural Learning (LiCL)

In 2016/17, Royal Opera House Bridge piloted the Leaders in Cultural Learning (LiCL) course with a cohort of eight experienced Thurrock Trailblazer Cultural Champions.

Participants developed the skills needed to:

  • Realize their whole school vision for cultural learning
  • Embed cultural learning strategies into school thinking, planning and action
  • Advocate for cultural learning at a strategic level
  • Collaborate to improve delivery of cultural learning across schools and Multi Academy Trusts
  • Mentor and support other colleagues to grow and develop in this field
About the course

Participants developed a change-focused case study as part of the programme, supported by group discussion, independent learning and one-to-one mentoring. The programme used a variety of interactive thinking tools and creative, dynamic practices to stimulate discussion and growth. Participants were also invited to participate in a number of optional cultural activities.

Future opportunities

The LiCL participants continue to meet and develop their plans for cultural learning in Thurrock. If you are a Cultural Champion and keen to take part in a similar course, please send an email to