The Jamming Station Story


Jamming Station is a hub where artists can connect and grow creatively through crafting ideas, making music and performing. Exciting projects support young people to strengthen their voice and expression, helping them to step up in their lives with greater confidence and resilience. Whatever the ability or background, we offer young people the opportunity to develop core skills, gain valuable experience and find the inspiration to reach high in their lives. The organisation is founded on the understanding that engaging in music can be transformative and empowering, can inspire social change and create a culture of respect for individuals and communities.


Having two drummers in the family Jacqui Perks was accustomed to noise! But it was only when her son kept bringing home a gang of friends who crammed themselves into a very small attic room to ‘rehearse’ that Jacqui realised that there was nowhere in Totnes for kids to get together outside of school to chill and make some music. So she set her mind to find somewhere that she could hire. Along with mothers, musicians and local music teachers Lee Friese-Greene and Beth Coombes they loaded up their cars every week with drum kit and amps and ran sessions from the local Youth Club. Jamming Station grew as a grassroots community based project that engaged young people in all aspects of the organisation.

Eight years on and Jamming Station has grown into a highly respected youth music project which provides a valuable platform of regular sessions in towns, community centres, skate parks and local venues.

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Meet the team



Jacqui Perks, the daughter of Italian and Irish immigrants, is the Founder and Co-Director of Jamming Station. She was born in Liverpool in the ’60’s. Her father’s love of Country music, in particular Johnny Cash, still influences her passion for close harmony work and a song that tells a story. 

In her early 20's she graduated from Dartington College of Arts and spent the next ten years searching, like many, for that elusive 'deal' gigging in various bands and later, as a solo artist, across the London venues such as the Rock Garden, Powerhouse and Mean Fiddler.

She moved back down to the South West to raise her family feeding them on a healthy diet of Joni Michell, Bob Marley, Alison Krauss, U2, Bonnie Raitt, Norah Jones, Blondie, Talking heads and Soul music. They in turn have nourished her on Kanye West, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Dave Grohl, St. Vincent, Christine and the Queens and Billie Eilish. Songwriting continues to be her main joy working solo on crafting "beautifully miserable songs" and co-writing with those who can challenge her obsession with a 6/8 rhythm and an A minor scale. 

Jamming Station has been her unexpected offspring growing out of the need of her 12 year son needing to make some big noise on his drums with his mates. She feels blessed to have nurtured the project with her fellow director Beth. She continues to find young people inspiring and is passionate about helping them break ground, stepping out of their comfort zones to take creative risks, discover their own voice and to accept imperfections.


Beth Coombes is a coach, musician and Co-Director of Jamming Station.
Beth has been teaching piano and vocal skills for decades, helping young people to find their voice and passions for music, sing in harmony and perform their favourite music.

Beth chose to dedicate her free time to music at the age of seven. It gave her a structure and emotional language that was needed amidst the chaos of life. She worked with the Suzuki Method and through the grades, and composed simple pieces. Her teenage years were vibrant yet tough as she faced challenges with breakdown in the family bullying at school and living in a multi ethnic part of the city where there was racism, drugs, violence and a lack of safety particularly for young women. Life would been amazing for her as a teenager with a supportive social musical environment. This gave her the impetus to work with other young people.

She began mentoring in her 20's, helping others to create music from scratch and in her 30's with 7 year of teaching behind her she trained as a music leader and was inspired to develop a platform for young people to meet. Then she met Jacqui and joined the Jamming Station platform soon after it had begun, to help coach young people, fundraise and bring creative thinking to the organisation and her music training to the sessions. Her areas of work are: Strategy, partnerships, finances, team support, evaluation, safeguarding and sometimes content. Her passion is really with singing and piano composition and looks forward to recording this year.


Amanda Cuthbert
Silent Director


Knowing how important music was to her drummer son and his friends, and seeing what Jamming Station was offering to young people like them, Amanda wanted to support Jacqui and Beth.

Working as an actor and singer in her early life and later as a writer and producer in television, she has always been involved in the arts. From playing and singing in London folk clubs in the early 60s to creating and performing her one woman show in her early 60s (as a fundraiser for the community orchard where she is a trustee) music has always been a central part of her life.

She is delighted to be a silent supporter of Jamming Station which gives so much to young people – a place to create, have fun and feel good.



Cara Walker


Cara Walker is the Project Manager for Jamming Station, coming from a background in Film and TV Production she is well versed in the creative industries.

Cara moved to Totnes at the age of 11 and spent her teenage years growing up here. She well remembers the limited “cool” options for young people and a strong feeling that young people were not really welcomed in the town. She is thrilled to be part of one of the organisations in Totnes working hard to change that and give creative, constructive and positive outlets to the young people in this town.

Cara has always had musical leanings, growing up playing the flute, guitar and singing in choirs. Her plan was to be a rock star but life took her down the filmmaking road instead. Cara studied a Foundation Diploma in Lens Based Media at Exeter College followed by a degree in Contemporary Media Practice at the University of Westminster in London. Remaining in London after graduation, Cara worked freelance in film and for the Directors Guild of Great Britain. Finally fed up of being hemmed in by the M25, Cara returned to the countryside and Totnes in 2009. Cara finally moved away from the fast paced environment of TV production in 2020 to join Jamming Station.

Although a punk at heart, Cara has a love for all musical genres and loves watching live music.





Sophie Hammill
Project Coordinator


And also covering some Management whilst Cara is on maternity leave. Music is very much at the core of her life. Having written and performed her own songs from a young age, Sophie went on to work in the music industry in London after studying Psychology at University. She worked for 4 years as Assistant to an artist/producer Manager, which gave her a full view of the industry. Deciding to pursue a dream to open her own music café, she moved back to York where she grew up and established her own coffee shop called Busk, where live music events were held to showcase local talent.

She moved to Totnes in September and immediately focused on finding a job within music. Jamming Station really stood out to her. Having attended a community music college in her teens, she is aware of how important music is in finding your own voice and building strong and defining connections with people and so it is fantastic to be helping enable that for young people in Totnes now.



Lotti Jullien


Lotti moved to Devon in 2003 and graduated from Dartington College of Arts with a BA in Music Composition in 2006. Since then she has composed and performed a variety of music and theatre productions, as well as working as a producer for local community radio. Lotti is quite new to the Jamming Station family, but loves the organisation’s ethos and only wishes she had had something like this growing up!





Ryan Hamilton
Music Leader


Ryan studied music composition at Dartington and went on to play in bands all over the U.K. he has spent the past 7 years developing his skills as music leader in a wide range of fields including songwriting, beat making and recording. Ryan delivers Jamming Stations core sessions as well as leading on outreach projects such as our recent beats and streets project which ran in local schools, youth centres and PRUs offering digital music making opportunities to rurally and socially isolated young people. Ryan had a very adaptive approach, ‘I like to respond to the young people I’m working with and help them step in whatever direction they want to go’. Ryan has been working with Jamming Station since 2017.



Izzi Warburton
Music Leader


I’m Izzi, I’m 22 and I’ve been a mentor at Jamming Station for 4 years.

It all started when I first moved to Totnes (aged 14) and went to Jamming Station’s first ever session. I instantly made friends for life and took great pleasure in jamming and creating music with them. I’ve been playing music since the age of 6 with my first release when I was 10. Music has become my life, my job and my love.

I’ve been playing in my band for over 10 years and we’ve played countless gigs at festivals such as Glastonbury, Boomtown, Beautiful days, Green gathering, Sunrise and more. We have also had a record deal with RAK Studios in London and had music released with the RAK Vinyl singles project.

I’m a session musician and play many instruments such as Guitar, Bass, Drums, Mandola, Percussion and more. I’m a recording engineer and own a solar powered recording studio that I built using recycled materials. I’ve worked with artists such as Haunt the woods, Cestra, LYR (The poet laureate) Seth Lakeman ect. It’s a joy working with Jamming station and I hope to continue working with them to help young people reach full potential in music whatever that might be.





Alhor Byrne
Music Leader
Producer, Audio Engineer and Events Coordinator


Alhor runs his own company, Sensei Audio Visual. He has had a passion for music since a young age and had his own radio show when he was 8. Alhor studied Music Production & Audio Engineering at dbs music, where he developed his knowledge for the science behind audio engineering.

Alhor produces electronic music under his alias VYTL he has few releases and is particularly excited to share some recent collaborations of his. He has been key to reaching the young people on our Youth Music Beats and Streets project in schools and the PRU working alongside Ryan.



Georgia Swallow
Music Leader


I have always been excited by music. I have spent the last 10+ years playing, making and studying music, where my interest and passion has only grown stronger and deeper. I have a degree in Commercial Music from Bath Spa University and have just completed my teacher training in Secondary Music through the University of Plymouth.

My main focus in music is performance and songwriting. As a performer, I have primarily been a soloist, playing acoustic guitar and singing, accompanied by my loop pedal. However, I now perform mostly within bands - playing both originals and covers.





Esme Thwaites
Kickstarter - General Assistant


Esme is Jamming Stations newest team member. She has many years of music industry experience and has been writing music since she was big enough to hold a guitar.

Esme’s main passion is songwriting and how to find a unique and authentic form of expression through music. She holds a degree in songwriting (BIMM) and is actively writing and performing in an eclectic range of projects from eight piece jazz bands to folk duos. She has experience in self releasing material and is in the throes of creating her new album.

In Jamming Station Esme hopes to be able to hold young creatives on their artistic journey, to help guide them in writing and releasing their own music, to feel empowered and confident in what they are doing. She recognises that sometimes the creative process, especially when it's a new journey, can be difficult. Every artist has moments where they are uncertain or unsure of what to do. Esme hopes to be able to create a space where she can not only pass down her mass of songwriting techniques but also help young artists feel held and mentored in the process.




Jamming Station In A Nut Shell

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Stored in our present at home at Totnes Civic Hall, we have an Allen and Heath desk and full PA system set up on stage each week. For the technically minded, Andy our tech guy is always keen to guide members through setting up and using the system each session so they can practice the craft of stage management.


  • We have a full rock drum kit as well as a set of Cajóns and range of percussion.
  • There are a variety of guitars available for members to try, including both an electric and a bass guitar, an acoustic 12-string and a small classical guitar.
  • We even have a semi-acoustic ukulele!
  • We have a range of amplifiers, a small selection of effect and loops pedals
  • There is a five octave Yamaha keyboard.
  • We also have a drum kit available for members to try out at home, and it is always possible for other instruments and equipment to be loaned to members for half a term or so.


Of course we encourage members to bring their own instruments when they can and to remember to include capos, straps, plectrums etc although we do also keep a small supply of these too!

Highlights recorded throughout a typical year include new songs written and new instruments taken up.
Regular participants of Jamming Station have also greatly improved their musical ability by:

  • Playing music as part of a group
  • More inspired to make music at home, practicing and developing own ideas
  • In-session informal music tutoring
  • Regular performance dates to aim for
  • Performing to small and larger audiences
  • Peer support and mentoring
  • Initiating and leading with own ideas
  • Improved improvisation skills
  • Technical experience in stage and PA setup
  • Singing in 2, 3 and 4-part harmonies
  • Support and strength with the voice
  • Learning by ear
  • Combining jazz, classical and popular musical instruments and styles within an ensemble
The best 3 quid i've ever spent...

"That was the best 3 quid I've ever spent in the Barrel House', and 'I love how the adults are invited into a youth music night, instead of the other way round"
Lizzy, audience member from Totnes


"It was brilliant. People really enjoyed seeing the young musicians performing and then having the chance to perform on the Barrel House Ballroom stage. I hope these evenings will continue to happen" Mike, audience member, Ashburton.


If you are between 13 and 25 and want to take part in Jamming Station we would love to hear from you.
If you're a little older and want to support Jamming Station we would love to hear from you too!