MELANIE Paris is to leave the National Centre for Early Music (NCEM) at the end of the year after working for the organisation since it opened its doors 17 years ago.

Re-structuring is taking the marketing role in-house. Freelance marketing consultant Melanie will now concentrate on running York Stay Holidays, finalists in the York Tourism Awards 2016. Set up with husband David Grant, this new holiday business offers luxury city-centre accommodation.

Melanie will be available to take on new freelance marketing, training and project management work too.

She has played a significant and influential role in the development of the NCEM, a multifaceted organisation that runs three early music festivals and an innovative education programme in York and the Humber; is home to folk, world and jazz programmes and has a commercial hire business that focuses on wedding receptions and conferences.

NCEM director Delma Tomlin, who has worked with Melanie for more than 25 years, said: "Melanie has been key to the success of the NCEM's marketing operation, engaging audiences locally, regionally and nationally, and helping to establish the NCEM as one of the major touring venues for music in the north of England.

"A keen jazz enthusiast, she has supported emerging talent across all ages and successfully launched the NCEM’s family-friendly programme, as well as cultivating new income streams through conferencing and parties.

York Press:

Saxophonist Snake Davis: among the jazz acts Melanie Paris booked for the National Centre for Early Music in York

“Melanie's creativity and energy has been an inspiration to us all and we will continue to look to her for advice and support as we develop a new marketing team into the future."

Melanie said: “It’s been a real privilege to work for the NCEM and to have been part of such a talented and hard-working team. I’ve been involved in every aspect of marketing, including creating the brand; developing websites and digital content; designing iconic print and selling high quality music experiences.

"My musical tastes are now very eclectic, having had the wonderful opportunity to listen to such a wide range of music across many different genres."

During her time at the NCEM, Melanie has been "fortunate enough to run the jazz programme". "I've had the pleasure of inviting some of the UK’s ‘jazz greats’ to York including Martin Taylor, Andy Sheppard, John Williams, John Etheridge, Snake Davis, Ian Shaw, Liane Carroll, Alan Barnes and Claire Martin, to name but a few," she said.

"It’s been very rewarding to witness jazz musicians and audiences reeling from such special intimate musical experiences and I will treasure those memories."

Roland Walls, who runs the Black Swan Folk Club, a regular collaborator, with the NCEM, says: "We have worked closely with Melanie throughout that time to publicise our folk concerts there – all 130 or so of them – and she has always been helpful, supportive and utterly professional.

"Even in this increasingly digital age, the high-quality NCEM bi-annual brochures, which she produces, continue to play a major role in 'selling' folk events to a far wider audience than we could possibly reach on our own."

Before she leaves, Melanie is putting together a final brochure covering the first half of next year.