The Royal Armouries Museum - Trustees x 2

Body: The Royal Armouries Museum
Appointing Department: Department for Culture, Media & Sport
Sector: Culture, Media & Sport
Location: London, Leeds, or at Fort Nelson, Hampshire
Skills required: Business / Commercial, Communication / Media / Marketing, IT / Digital
Number of Vacancies: 2
Remuneration: None
Time Requirements: The Board of Trustees meets four times a year


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

The Secretary of State has appointed Neil Grant, Paul Kirkman and Jonathan Sands as Trustees of the Royal Armouries, each for a term of four years. Paul and Jonathan will be starting their terms on 28 September 2018, whilst Neil will begin his term on 1 October 2018.

Date: 08/10/2018

View Announcement

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications

    09/05/2018 at 12:00

  • Panel Sift


  • Final Interview Date


  • Announcement



Assessment Panel

Vacancy Description

  1. Introduction

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is seeking an outstanding individual with a passion for cultural heritage to join the Board of Trustees of the Royal Armouries Museum. For this appointment, the successful candidate will have experience of the public engagement strategy and activities of major visitor attraction, preferably including one or more museums, and will champion the needs and service of our audiences at Board level. This will partly be exercised through membership of the Board of Directors of the Museum’s commercial arm, Royal Armouries Trading and Enterprises Ltd (RATE).

  1. The Royal Armouries

The Royal Armouries is Britain’s national museum of arms and armour, and one of the most important museums of its type in the world. Its origins lie in the Middle Ages, and at its core is the celebrated collection originating in the nation’s working arsenal, assembled over many centuries at the Tower of London. The collection of c.70,000 items – apart from the c.2700 loans to other bodies – is now displayed and housed not only in the Tower of London but also at the purpose-built museum in Leeds and at Fort Nelson, near Portsmouth. Since 2005 the museum has also managed the collection of small arms assembled since the early 19th century by the British Army (the former Pattern Room), now also in Leeds and known as the National Firearms Centre.

The organisation was established in its present form by the National Heritage Act (1983) and is a Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB) sponsored by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, from whom, in 2016-17, it received £7,088,000 in Grant in Aid. It currently employs 160 staff and receives nearly two million visitors a year across the three sites. Admission is free except at the Tower of London, where the Royal Armouries’ museum is within Historic Royal Palaces’ pay perimeter.

Since January 2018, the DCMS has taken on the ownership and management of Royal Armouries International (RAI), the catering and events business operating within the museum building and in nearby premises, possession of which will be transferred to the Royal Armouries Museum during the course of 2018. With an annual turnover of about £5m, delivering about £1m in profit, this has transformed the scale and potential of the museum’s commercial activity, giving the museum commercial potential comparable to that of other national museums and a sustainable future.

More information, including the Royal Armouries’ Corporate Plan 2015-20 and the Annual Report and Accounts for 2016-17 can be found at

  1. The Role of the Board of Trustees

The Board of Trustees of the Royal Armouries consists of a Chairman and 10 Trustees who have statutory duties under Chapter 47 of the National Heritage Act 1983. This states that:

The Board shall perform their functions for the general purpose of maintaining and exhibiting a national collection of arms, armour and associated objects, and of maintaining a record relating to arms and armour at the Tower of London.

The Act also states that the Board shall care for the collection, make it available for research, ‘generally promote the public’s enjoyment and understanding of arms and armour…’, and that it may also ‘provide education, instruction and advice and carry out research’.

Under the leadership of the Chair, Trustees share responsibility for:

  • oversight and stewardship of the collections and other assets;
  • agreeing appropriate resource levels and assisting in the procurement of resources from DCMS and elsewhere;
  • formulating the Board’s strategy for discharging its statutory duties;
  • ensuring that the Board carries out its corporate responsibilities;
  • ensuring that the Board, in reaching decisions, takes proper account of guidance provided by the Secretary of State, the responsible Minister or the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS); and
  • supporting the Director-General and Master in the performance of his/her duties and in his/her leadership of the Executive Board.

In addition, Trustees:

  • should have and demonstrate energetic commitment to the Royal Armouries’ stated Purpose, Vision, Principles, Aims and Objectives as set out in the Corporate Plan and upholding its Policies;
  • will be active and positive advocates for the Royal Armouries, representing it to Ministers and other stakeholders such as funders and the education, regional and tourism communities, including local partners in Leeds and the surrounding areas;
  • will comply with the intentions of Corporate Governance in Central Government Departments: Code of Good Practice 2011 in so far as they are relevant to a NDPB and Charity Commission governance rules etc;
  • will in all respects embody the Seven Principles of Public Life (attached); and
  • will have excellent communication skills and the ability to represent the museum in the public realm, to stakeholders and government.



Person Specification

Visitor Attraction Trustee x1

Essential skills and experience:

The successful candidate will have experience in the governance at a very senior level (preferably non-executive) of an organisation with a major public engagement commitment and programme, have made a significant contribution to its success, and be able to add value through personal experience and expertise. In particular he/she will have:

  • an outstanding track-record in the high-level leadership and development of cultural visitor attractions;
  • an understanding of public engagement practices and strategies and of current trends and developments in that field;
  • an understanding of the strategic role, management and delivery of interpretation to excite and engage the museum’s audiences;
  • an understanding of the role of audience research in shaping the museum’s public engagement strategy and its delivery; and
  • an interest in museums and culture in general and an understanding of the role of a national collection.


Desirable skills and experience:

  • personal enthusiasm for history and arms, armour, artillery and related subjects;
  • experience of working in the public sector and of the nature, advantages and processes peculiar to it, including preferably outside of London;
  • an understanding of the role and potential of publishing within the context of a cultural organisation;
  • experience and understanding of the role and potential of digital technology in the context of visitor attractions and reaching, attracting and engaging new and current audiences.
  • experience in managing and developing brand identity in visitor attraction context;
  • experience in marketing and fundraising in visitor attraction context, and the ability to access and influence fundraising networks for the benefit of the Royal Armouries; and/or
  • an understanding of the role, importance and delivery of formal and informal education services in a visitor attraction context.

Commercial Trustee x1

Essential skills and experience:

The successful candidate will have:

  • an outstanding track-record in the leadership, management and development of commercial enterprises;
  • entrepreneurial flair, vision and imagination;
  • an informed and proportionate understanding of risk and risk management in business environment;
  • the ability to chair a Board of Directors (RATE) constructively and effectively;
  • capacity for strategic development and strategic vision; and
  • an interest in and passion for museums and culture in general and an understanding of the role of a national collection.


Desirable skills and experience:

  • personal knowledge of and enthusiasm for history and arms, armour, artillery and related subjects and material culture;
  • previous involvement in the management of a museum, museum or heritage attraction/s;
  • experience of working in the public sector and of the nature, advantages and processes peculiar to it;
  • experience of property and real estate management and development; and/or
  • the ability to access and influence fundraising networks for the benefit of the Royal Armouries.

Additional Information

Interviews will take place on 4 June 2018 and 12 June 2018. Please ensure both dates are held in your diary.

Please note that DCMS are unable to provide reimbursement for travel expenses.

How to Apply

The process for this public appointment will adhere to the Code of Practice published by the Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments.

To apply, please send:

  • a CV of no more than three sides of A4;
  • a supporting statement of not more than two sides of A4, setting out how you meet the person specification for the role; and
  • two monitoring forms (attached) covering your personal information and political activity.

Completed applications should be emailed to If you are unable to email your application please, post a hard copy, to:

Public Appointments

Department for Digital Culture Media and Sport

100 Parliament Street




If you have any questions regarding your application please contact Priya Mistry at

Each application will be assessed against the required skills and experience set out above.

RA Ministerial Message to Candidates
Conflicts of Interest Guidance
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