Growing up in rural Cheshire, I spent my childhood playing in woods and making dens in cornfields, giant nests really, which became camps, performance arenas, beds or trampolines as required. I have never stopped wanting to play. I adored drama and art but some inherited work ethic made me believe that having so much fun couldn't be work.

After a degree in Philosophy and Literature, I worked as residential Social Worker with adolescents and children with learning disabilities. I then trained as a teacher working in Primary schools in Hertfordshire for 11 years until 1991, latterly as Deputy Head teacher of Camp School in St Albans.

Wake of a ferry (© Kathryn Holt)

I was an Early Years specialist and my particular areas of interest were children's play and the development of imagination. Whilst teaching I participated in the National Oracy Project where I worked alongside the wonderful storyteller Mary Medlicott and this experience watered the seeds of my interest in Storytelling.

I spent several years caring for my two daughters, working part time supporting children with English as an additional language, running a Nurture group for children with emotional and behavioural difficulties, and working in a number of schools helping them to develop imaginative outdoor play spaces with living willow structures.

I trained in ceramics and feltmaking, and studied storytelling in therapy and education in the Arts Therapies department of the University of Hertfordshire, with Alida Gersie, whose inspirational teaching has influenced me more than I can say.

Reading Alida Gersie's book 'Earth Tales', and collaborating in her subsequent work on storytelling and sustainability have kindled a desire to develop my work in ways which help people reconnect with our fragile natural world.