Nell has always loved books and story. After graduating from New College, Oxford with a degree in English Literature, she began her career at Circus Flora in the USA. She has since worked on Santus Circus, Chinese State Circus, Bobby Roberts Super Circus and Circus Roncalli in Germany under Yasmine Smart.
In 2000, Nell started Giffords Circus with her husband Toti. Their vision was of a miniature village green circus, packed, rowdy glamourous – birds, horses, motorbikes bursting from a fluttering white tent – a show for rural families, farmers and film stars! Since starting the circus they have entertained over 250,000 people and have worked with some of the biggest names in theatre creation.
Nell’s first book Josser, the Secret Life of a Circus Girl (Little, Brown), is about her life in the circus. She has also written a children’s biography on the inventor of the circus, Phillip Astley (The Short Book Company). Her latest book Giffords Circus – The First Ten Years (The History Press), gives a colourful account of the creation of Giffords and is now on general sale.
In 2007, Nell was awarded an Honorary Fellowship to the University of Gloucestershire, and in 2010 was presented with the inaugural ‘Maverick Award’ by the Groucho Club, London. Since 2000, Nell has been the executive producer on all thirteen Giffords Circus shows.