Head of Collections Conservation & Care

Job Summary

National Trust
Contract Type
£69598 - £83733
Closing date

Job Details

The National Trust is looking for a new Head of Collections Conservation and Care to support conservation practice at sites across England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

This exciting role will provide inspirational leadership to the professional communities of preventive and remedial collections and interiors conservation staff and volunteers across the Trust. You will be an experienced collections/heritage conservation professional, with strategic leadership responsibilities and an interest in the historic house context for collections and interiors. You will enjoy creating an enabling culture among your teams, supporting evolution in practice and leading for change. This role will require working at multiple sites and sharing your knowledge and enthusiasm for conservation with teams across the Trust and externally.

What it's like to work here

We’re bigger than you think, we’re more complicated than we appear and we’re larger scale than you’d imagine. We’ve got passionate people in all our teams, and we’ve got so much more we want to achieve. We’re for ever, for everyone and we really mean that. We don’t want to stop at 5.5 million members and we want everyone to feel welcome and enjoy access to our places, so we need to reach new audiences in ways that are meaningful and relevant to them without losing the hearts and minds of those that are already with us.

This is a centrally based role and some travel will be required to properties sometimes on a weekly basis.
Your contractual location will be our head office in Swindon, however there will be an opportunity to explore and agree hybrid working arrangements which strike the right balance for you and the Trust. The role will involve travel to our head office to meet with stakeholders and to carry out work.

What you'll be doing

  • You will take the lead on developing the potential of the Trust's in house centrally run conservation studios (at Knole and Blickling) and actively support fundraising for collections conservation.
  • You will maintain and enhance the Trust's external reputation for collections conservation and care together with the implementation and development of relevant policies, standards and frameworks.
  • You will lead on the delivery of Trust wide CPD for conservators and house teams
  • You will support the development of conservation research to serve NT strategy and reputational impact.
  • You will support the programme of conservation innovation and development of our most significant collections.

Who we're looking for

You can view the full role profile for this role in the document attached. You don't need to have all the knowledge, skills and experience listed in the role profile; this is just to show a full picture of what is possible in this role. 

We’d love to hear from you if you have:


  • A background in collections/heritage conservation leadership either in a museum or heritage setting and an energetic and collaborative approach to conservation practice.
  • A background in team leadership, working as a creative and pragmatic thinker with an audience focused vision for curatorial practice in the context of the Trust’s places and collections.
  • Relevant professional qualification in preventive and remedial conservation and extensive in-depth knowledge and experience of conservation of collections.
  • Broad knowledge and significant experience in the application of conservation principles in heritage settings.
  • Strong ability to work collaboratively with others and coach teams.
  • Confidence in leading for and enabling appropriate change and a proven track record of managing and delivering innovation in a multi-disciplinary environment/ teams.
  • A proven record of building mutually effective relationships with related professionals internally and externally, at all levels.
  • Excellent planning, organising skills and presentation skills.
  • The ability to work as part of a wider Curatorial and Conservation leadership team in a joined up manner, collaborating and sharing learning an ideas.

The package

The National Trust has the motto ‘For everyone, for ever’ at its heart. We’re working hard to create an inclusive culture, where everyone feels they belong. It’s important that our people reflect and represent the diversity of the communities and audiences we serve. We welcome and value difference, so when we say we’re for everyone, we want everyone to be welcome in our teams too.

  • Substantial pension scheme of up to 10% basic salary
  • Free entry to National Trust places for you, a guest and your children (under 18)
  • Tax-free childcare scheme
  • Rental deposit loan scheme
  • Season ticket loan
  • Perks at work discounts such as gym memberships, shopping discount codes, cinema discounts
  • Holiday allowance up to 32 days relating to length of service, plus holiday purchase scheme, subject to meeting minimum criteria.
  • Flexible working whenever possible
  • Employee assistance programme
  • Free parking at most Trust places
  • Independent financial advice

For more information, please the webpage here: IRC147702 - Head of Collections Conservation & Care (nationaltrust.org.uk)