Chair - Human Tissue Authority (E17-85)

Body: Human Tissue Authority
Appointing Department: Department of Health and Social Care
Sector: Health and Social Care
Location: London
Skills required: Regulation
Number of Vacancies: 1
Remuneration: £42,000 per annum
Time Requirements: 2-3 days per week


An announcement has been made on the outcome of this appointment.

Nicola Blackwood has been appointed as the new Chair of the Human Tissue Authority for three years from 13 March 2018.
The appointment will involve a time commitment of 2 to 3 days per week. Remuneration for the role will be at a rate of £42,000 per annum.
This appointment is made in accordance with the Cabinet Office Code of Governance for Public Appointments. The regulation of public appointments against the requirements of this Code is carried out by the Commissioner for Public Appointments.
The appointment is made on merit and political activity played no part in the decision process. However, in accordance with the Code, there is a requirement for appointees’ political activity (if any declared) to be made public. Ms Blackwood has held office for the Conservative party.

Date: 21/03/2018

View Announcement

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications

    11/01/2018 at 12:00

  • Panel Sift


  • Final Interview Date


  • Announcement

    21/03/2018 at 12:00


Assessment Panel

Vacancy Description

Ministers are seeking to make a chair appointment to the board of the Human Tissue Authority (HTA).

The Chair of the HTA will be accountable to the Secretary of State for Health and will:

  • provide leadership, challenge and direction to the organisation, encouraging and enabling the HTA to be a first-class regulator of human tissue;
  • ensure that the HTA carries out its statutory functions under the Human Tissue Act 2004 and meets the Government’s policies and priorities for the sector, complying with directions and guidance issued by the Secretary of State;
  • in partnership with the Chief Executive, set the tone for excellent working relationships between the HTA and key stakeholders to ensure the confidence in the work of the HTA of those who use services, the wider public, the regulated sector, Government and Parliament;
  • work with the Authority to ensure resources are managed effectively with a focus on the development of HTA staff, reflecting the organisation’s role and values as a first-class regulator; and
  • as Chair, build, develop and improve the Authority providing guidance and support to all Authority members, ensuring their effective induction, support and development and advising the Department of Health on their performance.


Person Specification

Qualities required for the role of Chair 

To be considered, you must be able to demonstrate that you have the qualities, skills and experience to meet all the essential criteria for appointment.

Essential Criteria

  • ability to chair a national organisation and lead in organisational improvement and horizon scanning;
  • ability to collaborate effectively to lead change in a large, complex system;
  • an effective (public) communicator, able to address high-profile, complex and sensitive scientific and ethical issues in a way that maintains public confidence;
  • ability to set the tone for excellent working relationships between the HTA, DH and its stakeholders, and to ensure continued confidence within government and of those who are regulated by the HTA; and
  • an understanding of diversity, equal opportunities and human rights issues and a commitment to applying best practice to the work of the HTA.

The Chair cannot have or have had a professional interest in any of the kinds of activity within the remit of the Human Tissue Authority.

Additional Information

Additional information can be found in the attached candidate information pack.

Key facts: 

  • HTA regulates over 850 licensed premises across nearly 600 organisations that remove, store and use tissue;
  • It comprises a Chair and 11 members, including a member nominated by the Welsh Government, and a member nominated by Northern Ireland;
  • The Authority is supported by an Executive of around 47 staff, and has a budget for 2017/18 of over £4m, of which around £0.80m was Grant-in-Aid from DH, and
  • The majority of the HTA’s income is from licence fees charged to the regulated sectors. It has achieved significant efficiencies over recent years.

The HTA’s key priority is to maintain public and professional confidence in the removal, storage and use of human tissue by ensuring that these activities are undertaken safely and ethically, and with proper consent.

Recent issues which the HTA has worked with others to provide advice on include;

  • cryopreservation of bodies;
  • disposal of foetal remains;
  • websites seeking to match organ donors and recipients;
  • plans to develop a taphonomy facility in the UK (a body farm); and
  • winter capacity and contingency preparations for mortuaries.

The HTA works closely with other regulators and industry to ensure that regulation supports innovation, whilst protecting public confidence.

Link to 2017-18 Business Plan and Strategy:


How to Apply

To make an application please email your CV, a supporting letter and completed monitoring form to: – please quote ref: E17-85 in the subject field.

If you are unable to apply by email you may send your application by post to:

Daniel Clemence, Department of Health, Room 1N09, Quarry House, Quarry Hill, Leeds, LS2 7UE

For further information regarding the role of the Human Tissue Authority and the role of Chair please contact:

Roger Wallis or Lucy Foster
Tel: 0113 2546091 Tel: 020 7210 5241
Email: Email:
Candidate Information Pack Final
GIS Form
Monitoring Form
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