Head of Curatorship

Job Summary

National Trust
Contract Type
£69598 - £83733
Closing date

Job Details

The National Trust is looking for a new Head of Curatorship to support curatorial practice at sites across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. This exciting role will provide inspirational leadership to the professional communities of curators across the Trust. You will be an experienced heritage professional, with strategic leadership responsibilities and a deep interest in historic buildings, architecture, including historic houses, their collections and settings. You will enjoy creating an enabling culture among your teams, supporting evolution in curatorial research, practice and leading an audience focused approach to presentation of NT places. This role will require working at multiple sites and sharing your knowledge and enthusiasm for our properties and collections 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 provide inspirational curatorial leadership across the Trust and will serve as Head of Profession for National, Cultural Heritage and Property Curators.
  • You will lead principally through advocacy and the delivery of specific projects utilising your skills in collaboration and teamworking working with conservators and collections management teams.
  • You will both support and lead on projects that help deliver outstanding curatorial practice and help test and evaluate innovation at NT places to provide benefit to our audiences, now and in the future.
  • You will play a role in fundraising for key projects and support the delivery of a major project on some of our most significant places and collections.
  • In collaboration with colleagues, you will develop plans for cataloguing, collections care, interpretation prioritising public access and audience focused practice.
  • You will help set and deliver national research priorities.
  • You will lead to enable change and evolution to our practices and processes ensuring we can deliver our Everyone Welcome Strategy and champion a culture of responding to audience needs in the context of interiors and collections, architecture, and wider heritage settings.

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 team leadership, a creative and pragmatic thinker with an audience focused vision for curatorial practice in the context of the Trust’s places and collections.
  • A track record in being highly organised and responsive, and able to build effective relationships across the Trust working collaboratively with staff at national, regional and property level.
  • A good track record on the effective delivery of projects and initiatives.
  • The ability to actively champion the Trust's strategy of Everyone Welcome, lead on our approach to interpreting history and have excellent partnership skills.
  • Good communication skills and with the ability to represent the Trust externally, sharing best practice and applied research.
  • Relevant postgraduate degree or equivalent experience and skills in applied research.
  • Significant knowledge of architectural history and/or art history and good understanding of place within the context of Art, British and European landscape, gardens/parks history and archaeology.

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

Please see this webpage for more information: IRC147705 - Head of Curatorship (nationaltrust.org.uk)