Commissioners - Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales

Body: Welsh Government
Appointing Department: Welsh Government
Sectors: Charity & Public Sector, Culture, Media & Sport
Location: Meetings are normally held in Aberystwyth, but may on occasion be held elsewhere in Wales.
Skills required: Communication / Media / Marketing, Regulation
Number of Vacancies: 3
Remuneration: £198 per day attended plus travel and other reasonable expenses within the recognised limits. You may also be eligible to claim reimbursement for costs in relation to child care/care of the elderly/assistant carer whilst carrying out work on behalf of the Royal Commission.
Time Requirements: Ten days per year

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications


  • Panel Sift


  • Final Interview Date

    Interviews are to be held on 12 & 13 June 2017

  • Announcement



Assessment Panel

Vacancy Description

The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales is the unique, independent national archive and investigation service for Wales, dedicated to the authoritative recording and interpretation of our rich historic environment. Located within the National Library of Wales building in Aberystwyth, we operate at arm’s length from the Welsh Government, with skilled staff providing professional advice and expert information to the public. We are committed to delivering the best possible service for Wales, fostering greater understanding and care for our historic buildings and landscapes, and recognising the potential for heritage to help improve people’s lives.

The Royal Commission has a long history in Wales. It was established in 1908 by Royal Warrant, which was revised in 2000. The Warrant directs the Royal Commission ‘to provide for the survey and recording of ancient and historical monuments and constructions from the earliest times (including the ancient and historical monuments in, on or under the sea bed) by compiling, maintaining and curating the National Monuments Record of Wales as the basic national record of the archaeological and historical environment’.

The Royal Commission is a Welsh Government Sponsored Body (WGSB) whose role and responsibilities are set out in the Royal Warrant of 2000. Our governance and accountability arrangements are set out in a Framework Document. The Royal Commission’s operational priorities and performance targets are informed by an annual Remit Letter from the Cabinet Secretary for Economy & Infrastructure. This letter sets out strategic priorities, specific policies and action plans, and the wider policies and procedures of the Welsh Government.

Board’s Role
The Board of Commissioners provides leadership and governance for the organisation, and provides scrutiny and constructive challenge to all of the Commission’s activities. The Board also shapes the future of the organisation.

The Board of Commissioners comprises a Chairman and up to ten other Commissioners. Currently, there are six Commissioners, including the Chairman, Dr Eurwyn Wiliam. The other Commissioners are: Catherine Hardman (Vice-Chair), Thomas Lloyd, Professor Chris Williams, Dr Mark Redknap and Caroline Crewe-Read.

Building on its recent successes and achievements, the Royal Commission is now looking to grow and develop for the future. We are seeking to appoint three new Commissioners.

Person Specification

The Board of Commissioners provides leadership and governance for the organisation, and provides scrutiny and constructive challenge to all of the Royal Commission’s activities. The Board also shapes the future of the organisation. The Royal Commission is keen to appoint individuals who are committed to providing the best possible historic environment service for the benefit of all the people of Wales.

As a Commissioner, you will:

• Review the Organisation’s Operational Plan, taking account of work in progress, the directions contained in the Remit Letter from the Welsh Government and initiatives that originate within the Organisation;

• Ensure that the governance of the Organisation complies with the requirements of the Framework document, and that the scope of the Organisation’s activities falls within the terms of the Royal Warrant;

• Ensure that the performance required of the Organisation by the Welsh Government is attained and that a report is published annually on the Organisation’s activities;

• Provide guidance and direction to the expert staff of the Organisation, and to monitor their work, in committee or individually;

• Be directly involved in, and take responsibility for, the content of the specialist publications of the Organisation; and

• Represent the Royal Commission and its interests when called upon to do so.

Commissioners are also expected to:

• Have an understanding of the historic environment and its significance;

• Have a clear vision on how the Royal Commission can continue to work with key partners to provide the best possible historic environment service for Wales;

• Work as part of a high performing Board of Commissioners that carries out strong performance management, displays core team behaviours and values, constructively challenges and supports one another, and that continuously measures the achievements of the team against the Commission’s goals; and

• Subscribe to and uphold the seven principles of public life (the “Nolan principles”).

Person Specification

To be considered, you must be able to demonstrate that you have the qualities, skills and experience to meet all the essential criteria (divided up in ‘essential expertise’ and ‘essential personal skills’) for appointment.

Essential Criteria

Essential Expertise
The Royal Commission is committed to strengthening and diversifying our board, and so are looking for three new Commissioners who will have significant expertise in one or more of the following areas:

1. Community engagement: A key principle of our corporate strategy is to work in partnership with community groups so that the people of Wales become contributors to our work and not just consumers of it. We have had some success in this field already, having trained some 200 or so heritage volunteers in the skills of archival research and buildings recording. We also involve volunteers in all aspects of our work, from cataloguing to archaeological fieldwork and excavation, and encourage online participation through crowdsourcing projects. We could do more, however, and we are keen to contribute to the Welsh Government’s ambitions for heritage to serve as a catalyst for raising aspirations, engaging, inspiring and empowering people in the most deprived communities in Wales.

We therefore wish to recruit a Commissioner with practical experience of working in this field to help us formulate an appropriate and realistic community engagement strategy and to help us identify potential partners for this work.

2. Digital strategy: The Royal Commission is already regarded as a pioneer in a number of digital areas and has been given a leadership role in various pan-Wales projects as a consequence. On the technical side, these include GIS development, the curation of digital archives and very large datasets, and climate change modelling. On the content side, these include leading the innovation strand of the People’s Collection Wales, the development of themed databases for Welsh battlefields and historic place names in Wales, and managing the Historic Wales portal, which brings together historic environment data held by a number of different bodies. This is a growing area of work for the Royal Commission and is core to our future sustainability. We wish to deliver much more content digitally to our customers in future, help them find the data they want quickly and easily, exploit the commercial potential of our images, and build partnerships with the other key players in the sector so as to develop joint solutions to the challenges we face in a rapidly changing digital environment.

We therefore wish to recruit an individual with a strong track record in digital leadership to help us see with clarity what we need to do to lay the foundations of a viable strategy that will serve the Royal Commission well in the immediate and longer term future.

3. Archaeology (including industrial archaeology): Archaeological fieldwork is a major part of our work, and we have a number of important projects in hand at the moment, including long-term externally-funded fieldwork projects. As one of the world’s first industrial nations, Wales is especially rich in the archaeology of early industry, and recording and understanding this form of heritage, which is very much at risk from redundancy and redevelopment, forms a major part of our work – not least as partner in Wales’s bid for World Heritage Site status for the Welsh Slate Industry.

We therefore wish to recruit a leading archaeologist as a Commissioner to help with our horizon scanning work so as to identify suitable projects and to help us exploit digital field recording technologies to the full, especially in regard to large and complex sites.

Essential Personal Skills
Candidates will also need to demonstrate that they have:

• Strong intellectual and analytical skills;

• The ability to represent the Royal Commission in public and communicate effectively with key stakeholders;

• An understanding of the diverse communities in Wales and a commitment to sharing the benefits of engagement with Welsh heritage;

• The ability to collaborate effectively, and work with and through others to achieve objectives; and

• The ability to bring fresh ideas to discussions on both strategic and practical issues.

Additional Information

For further information regarding the role of the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales and the role of Commissioners, please contact:

Christopher Catling
Tel: 01970 621 200

How to Apply

To apply you will need to submit two supporting documents. The first, a document outlining how your knowledge, skills and experiences meet the criteria for the role as outlined in the information for candidates. This document should be no more than 2 sides of A4. Your application may be rejected if you exceed this limit.

The personal statement is your opportunity to 1) outline your interest in the role, 2) demonstrate how you meet each of the criteria set out in the person specification, and 3) outline how you could contribute to the work of the Royal Commission. How you choose to present the information is up to you. However, you should aim to provide detailed examples that demonstrate how your knowledge and experience matches each of the criteria (divided up in ‘essential expertise’ and ‘essential personal skills’), and which describe what your role was in achieving a specific result. It will also benefit the selection panel if you can make clear which of the criteria your evidence relates to. Providing separate paragraphs in relation to each criterion is common practice.

The second document is a full, up to date CV.

For further information regarding the selection process, please contact:

The Corporate Shared Service Centre
Tel: 029 2082 5454

If you need any further assistance in applying for this role, please contact the Welsh Government’s Corporate Shared Service Centre Helpdesk on 029 2082 5454 or

Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales - Information pack for applicants
Comisiwn Brenhinol Henebion Cymru - Pecyn gwybodaeth i ymgeiswyr
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