Meet the team
Suzanne Robinson - Director
After completing my degree in Industrial Design in Manchester in 1988, I joined Carterbench, and my role has evolved to Product Director, responsible for client contact and managing projects through the studio - involved in all aspects of the design process. Twenty-six years later I am still here and still love the creative buzz of the industry! Outside toys, my passion is landscape - whether walking in the Lakes with my dog or trying to paint it!
Simon Gidion - Director
The fun began when I joined Carterbench in 1985, after leaving Mid Cheshire College of Art and Design. I quickly became addicted to those "Eureka" design moments. After nearly thirty years in the industry, it amazes me how the magic just keeps evolving.
In my spare time I'm either cycling the local hills, or reliving my childhood with my four boys. We are nearly always in trouble, or covered in mud, or both. Meal times have become brainstorms and mad experiments! (It's amazing what spaghetti can do.) They are so inspirational!
Jim Keenan - Director
After graduating as an Industrial Designer, I spent about five years in product design, until I met the Carterbench Team. After successfully passing the Sean Connery Impersonation Test ©Rob Kay, I joined Carterbench in 1997. With a keen interest in science & technology, I have been combining my role as designer with that of resident "techie", with a bit of "trekkie", ever since.
Richard Marlow - Design Engineer
Since graduating in Industrial Design in 1991, I have been fully immersed in the toy industry. If it moves, lights up or makes a sound - I'm your man! Out of hours, I am currently chief "roadie" for my son's burgeoning rock band!
Mary Danby - Product Director
I began my career in TV production, and went on to become a writer and fiction editor. More than twenty-five years ago I invented my first board game, and have since licensed over a hundred toys and games. In 2010 my company joined forces with Carterbench, and I now manage the Carterbench South team. I love the toy business - mostly because it's full of fantastic people!
Lynn Ash - Office and Financial Manager
My background is in economics and accountancy, but nothing surprised me more than finding that I do have a creative streak after all, and I love contributing and being part of this great innovative company. Seeing a product on the shelf that started off as a germ of an idea is a big thrill!
Nicky Wastie - Designer
My background is in fine art and all things arty and crafty. The perfect career for me turned up by accident and I haven't looked back. I have now been working in the toy business for over twenty-three years, turning ideas into products. My greatest delight was to walk into a shop on the other side of the world to find something that I'd created. It's a great business to be in.
Charlie Bason - Designer
I graduated with a degree in Industrial Design and Technology from Loughborough University in 2002. From working as a product designer for a leading London design consultancy for a number of years, I went on to train to be a Chartered UK and European Patent Attorney. I work as part of the design team at Carterbench, whilst also providing support to evaluate and protect our ideas. Having recently had my first child, I now have my very own tester at home!