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Who is behind Essex 2020

Essex 2020 is a collaborative celebration, involving hundreds of individuals, organisations and businesses from across the county and beyond. The programme and its outcomes belong to everyone.

The catalyst for Essex 2020 was Anglia Ruskin University’s successful bid to host the British Science Festival in September 2020. It is Europe’s longest science programme and will come to Essex for the first time in its 189-year history.

The opportunity the Festival offered to create a year-long festival of STEAM-related activities in Essex led to the commissioning of Essex 2020 – A Year of Science and Creativity by Essex Partners.

Essex Partners has established the following management framework to shape and deliver the collaborative programme of events:

Project Management

The day-to-day running and development of Essex 2020 is managed by always possible. This strategic place-making and projects company has experience of designing innovative projects that bring together business, education, public services and the creative industries.


The overall programme is commissioned by Essex Partners, comprising of organisations dedicated to improving the county. This includes all county and district/borough authorities, Active Essex, Anglia Ruskin University, Basildon & Thurrock University Hospital Trust, Diocese of Essex, Essex Community & Voluntary Sector, Essex Police Fire & Crime Commissioner, Essex Partnership University Trust, Mid-Essex Clinical Commissioning Group, Mid-Essex Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP), The Essex Alliance and the University of Essex.

Strategic Board

The legacy, strategic aims and outcomes of the programme are overseen by executive leaders from Anglia Ruskin University, BBC Essex, Chelmsford City Council, Chelmsford Cultural Trust, Diocese of Essex, Essex County Council, Firstsite and Teledyne E2V.

Steering Group

The Essex 2020 Steering Group works closely ensures that the core operational priorities are well-managed. Alongside three specialist working groups focused on programming, funding and communications, the Group ensures that Essex 2020 creates platforms and conditions for:

  • colleges and universities to offer wider educational opportunity
  • science and engineering companies to showcase jobs, invention and future technologies
  • arts and cultural organisations to create experiences to help people shape their identity in relation to both STEAM and Essex.

The Steering Group and working groups include a range of representatives from the arts, heritage, business, science, local authorities, parks and green spaces, education, community and voluntary sector, and the media, from across Essex.