Helen has spent most of her career covering the arts industry, primarily on the staff of The Sunday Times in London, where she worked for 34 years, the last 25 of them as arts editor. She started out in academia, teaching English and film while gaining an MA at the University of Colorado in Boulder, USA, then starting a PhD there (Reaganomics obliged her to return home before she could finish her dissertation). Back in the UK she moved into freelance journalism, writing about everything from film to fashion. Her Sunday Times section, Culture, won Supplement of the Year at the UK Press Awards in 2003 and was nominated multiple times; she has also regularly served on juries (London Film Festival, South Bank Show/Sky Arts awards, So You Think You’re Funny? awards) and has chaired the Edinburgh Comedy (formerly Perrier) Awards twice.
She now works as a freelance journalist and arts consultant, reviewing for the Arts Desk website, serving on the Orwell Prize’s journalism panel and adjudicating a new emerging talent prize at the Edinburgh Festival.