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By Tony Kelly,2014-05-06 18:24
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Director of Beamish -

    The North of England Open Air Museum

Applicant Brief

    Issued by NRG Executive Spring 2008


? Background

    ? New Governance/Management Arrangements ? Role Specification

    ? Person Specification

    ? Outline Terms and Conditions ? Timetable and Response Instructions ? Recruitment Monitoring Forms

    Issued by NRG Executive Spring 2008


    This regional open air Museum was established in 1970 as "an Open Air Museum for the purpose of studying, collecting, preserving, interpreting and exhibiting buildings, machinery, objects and information illustrating the development of industry and agriculture and way of life in the North of England". It is now the largest open air museum in the UK with collections of national and international importance.

    Beamish tells the story of the people of North East England at two important points in their history - 1825 and 1913. In 1825 the region was rural and thinly populated. The industrial revolution, especially the coming of the railways, accelerated change. By 1913 the region's heavy industries were at their peak.

    Beamish is not a traditional museum. Most of the houses, shops and other buildings have been "deconstructed" from elsewhere in the region and rebuilt here. A few, the Drift Mine, Home Farm and Pockerley Manor were here already. All are buildings filled with objects, furniture and machinery - real things from their extensive collections.

    Within the buildings you will find costumed people who are trained to talk to visitors and to answer their questions. The staff are proud of their heritage and believe that the reality of human beings is better than technological virtual reality. It is this belief that distinguishes Beamish from other museums.

    Beamish stands on over three hundred acres of pleasantly rolling wooded land, crossed by the Beamish Burn, some nine miles to the south west of Newcastle upon Tyne. Development of the complex has been planned somewhat along the lines of well-known Scandinavian 'open air' or 'folk' museums. Approximately 65 buildings have been re-erected in appropriate settings on the site, followed by their restoration and furnishing including a Town Street, A Colliery Village, two railway stations and a farm. Beamish differs, however, from such museums by extending further these techniques to significant buildings and structures of social and industrial interest. The phrase 'open air' is intended to indicate that the objects are shown in their appropriate buildings, rather than in glass cases as in a traditional museum. By this technique the object is shown in its full social context and environment, instead of being divorced from its surroundings and associated material. It is also this Museum's remit to show complete areas of operation rather than merely re-creating single buildings as is sometimes the case in other 'open air' museums.


    It costs approximately ?3 million each year to cover the running costs of Beamish. 95% of revenue costs must be found from admission charges, retailing and catering profits, corporate hires, sponsorship and special events.

    Beamish is a partner in the North East Regional Museums Hub, part of the Renaissance programme. This is a ground- breaking programme funded by central Government, investing in England's regional museums with the aim of ensuring that they are great centres for life and learning. Financial support from Renaissance North East has enabled Beamish to undertake ongoing initiatives in Care of Collections, Education, Collections Access, Training and Publications.

    Capital development finance has historically come from the European Regional Development Fund, English Tourist Board/Visit England, Countryside Commission, the National Heritage Memorial Fund,

    Issued by NRG Executive Spring 2008

the Heritage Lottery Fund and endowments. The Beamish Development Trust, a registered charity,

    exists to encourage support from local industry, commerce and charitable trusts. Assistance,

    predominantly in kind, is also provided by the Friends of Beamish and volunteer groups.

Around 350,000 visitors are attracted to Beamish annually. Approximately 70% of adult and family

    visitors come from outside the North East region. Over 50,000 children visit Beamish in booked

    school parties. Beamish is thus fulfilling the dual function of education and entertainment.

Beamish has more than 90 people employed on a full-time basis but this number can increase to over

    200 people in the peak summer season. The Senior Management Team on site includes:

    ? Darren Jensen-Commercial Manager

    ? Anne Latimer-Head of Personnel & Administration

    ? Rosemary Allen- Senior Keeper

    ? Jane Gibson-Head of Historic Operations

    ? Davie Wear-Head of Estates

    ? Simon Woolley-Head of Education

    ? Christine Stevens-Head of Collections

    ? Stuart Shaw-Finance Manager

Future Plans

Like any successful museum or visitor attraction, Beamish strives to constantly refresh its offering. To

    date this has been achieved by two mains; the addition of new buildings (the latest being the Masonic

    Lodge) and the development of the event programme. In order to achieve objective of 500,000

    visitors per annum, this trend will continue. The next capital development will be a Lamp Cabin and

    as the current event programme is oversubscribed the potential for additional events is huge.

    Issued by NRG Executive Spring 2008


Beamish was established by and remains a local authority run institution. Until recently it was

    administered by a Joint Committee of 44 members representing all the City, County and District

    councils in the North East Region. Sunderland City Council is the lead authority overall and

    specifically through senior officers leads on HR/Financial issues. Durham County Council is the lead

    authority for Legal/Secretarial issues.

However, following a recent study undertaken by PricewaterhouseCoopers, a new

    company/charitable trust has been created. Beamish Museum Ltd (not to be confused with the

    already established Beamish Development Trust) is now responsible for the development, strategic

    direction and management of the organisation and its staff. It has a board of nine reflecting the main

    financial contributors from the local authorities as follows:

    ? Sunderland City Council-2 members (including Cllr. Mel Speding the Board Chair.)

    ? Durham County Council-2 members (including Cllr. Edna Hunter, the Vice-Chair)

    ? Gateshead Council-2 members

    ? Newcastle City Council-2 members

    ? South Tyneside Council-1 member

These are the „constituent authorities.‟ The Joint Committee (also chaired by Cllr. Speding) retains

    ownership of the assets reflecting the social/capital investment of the contributions made by the

    whole region in the past.

The new Director will report to the Board of Beamish Museum Ltd and ipso facto the Joint Committee.

    In addition, the Director will report to a senior officer of the lead authority for performance /line

    management purposes.

    Issued by NRG Executive Spring 2008


    Overall Purpose of Job

    To be responsible for the development, management, direction and operation of all services and to

    ensure long term growth and sustainability of the Museum.

    Principal Responsibilities

    ? To provide efficient and effective planning, organisation, management and control of all

    Museum services.

    ? To provide leadership, direction and effective management of the Museum, its assets,

    financial resources and employees.

    ? To prepare and maintain and implement a realistic Business Plan designed to develop and

    improve the Museum.

    ? To advise the Board on matters relating to the development and management of the Museum

    and its collections.

    ? To ensure that all policy decisions taken by the Board are properly implemented. ? To ensure the effective management of human resources of the Museum, including

    recruitment, retention and development of all employees.

    ? To develop a common vision for the future of the Museum.

    ? To support and co-operate with the Treasurer to the Board in preparing the Annual Budget

    and Capital Programme and Medium Term Financial Plans.

    ? To ensure good risk management practice is embedded throughout the organisation and

    advise the Board on the risk management implications of its decisions. ? To act as a good ambassador with respect to the interests of the Board/Joint Committee and

    the Museum.

    Main Duties

? Managing the Museum, its collections and employees.

    ? Implementing and reviewing as necessary the Business Plan for the Museum. ? Drafting and presenting policy recommendations to the Board, in consultation with the Chair,

    the Treasurer and Secretary as appropriate. Implementing all policy decisions taken by the


    ? Advising the Board/Joint Committee on matters relating to the management and

    development of the Museum.

    ? Ensuring that the acquisition, care and preservation of all Museum collections is undertaken


    ? Promoting the Museum as a major tourist attraction at regional and national level. ? Identifying and attracting sources of external funding to sustain the development of Museum


    ? Identifying and introducing opportunities for the development of the Museum, its collections

    and cultural projects.

    ? Ensuring that all financial matters are carried out in line with financial regulations and the

    Standing Orders of the Board/Joint Committee in liaison with the Treasurer to the Board/Joint


    ? Developing and maintaining existing and new partnerships with private, public, community

    and voluntary bodies.

    Issued by NRG Executive Spring 2008

    ? Liaising with appropriate regional, national and international bodies including MLA North East,

    Museums Association, Tourism North East (at the Regional Development Agency), Friends

    of the Museum, Beamish Development Trust, European Open Air Museums and

    Renaissance North East.

    ? Maintaining and developing systems and procedures for the Museum.

    ? Maintaining and developing human resources policies for the Museum.

    ? Promoting and ensuring compliance with the Museum‟s Equal Opportunities Policy.

    ? Promoting and complying with good risk management practice.

    ? Ensuring that all Health and Safety requirements are adhered to.

    ? Discharging other responsibilities commensurate with the status of the post as may from time

    to time be required by the Board/Joint Committee.

The post holder must carry out their duties with full regard to the lead authority‟s Equal Opportunities

    Policy, Code of Conduct and all other Council Policies.

The post holder must comply with the lead authority‟s Health and Safety rules and regulations and

    with Health and Safety legislation.

The post holder must act in compliance with data protection principles in respecting the privacy of

    personal information held by the lead authority.

The post holder must comply with the principles of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 in relation to

    the management of records and information.

    Issued by NRG Executive Spring 2008


     Essential Desirable

    Qualifications Appropriate managerial training in a related Membership of a relevant discipline. Professional Institute or Body

Degree or equivalent standard of general


    Experience Strategic level management background Experience of co-operative work gained in the arts, museums, cultural, visitor with both the public and private attraction, destination marketing or related sectors. sectors i.e. environments combining public funding with income from commercial Experience of reporting directly to

    activities. a Board.

    Experience of general management, Experience of managing large managing several functions at the same development projects.


     Experience of working in a political Evidence of successful income generation environment and within through for example commercial activity, partnerships fundraising and sponsorship.

     Knowledge of marketing and public Experience of direct management and relations motivation of a diverse workforce.

Effective budgetary control of significant

    financial resources.

Track record of continuous improvement in

    raising organisational and individual


    Skills/ Personal Proven leadership both in terms of clear and

    Characteristics consistent direction and impact.

Ability to engage and empower.

Self motivation, commitment and


Ability to manage change effectively.

Innovative, flexible and creative to produce

    customised solutions of complex problems.

Credibility and integrity. An effective

    ambassador for the organisation.

    Issued by NRG Executive Spring 2008

    Excellent skills in communicating with and

    presenting to people and audiences at all

    levels. An ability to develop effective working

    relationships with employees, Elected

    Members, community groups and external


    Commercial awareness.

    Customer service orientation.

Other Able to meet transport requirements of the

    Requirements post.

    Prepared to work additional hours outside

    normal office hours as and when required.


    Issued by NRG Executive Spring 2008


The host employer for this post will be Sunderland City Council.


    The remuneration for the post is circa ?75,000 pa.


    The post-holder is entitled to join the Local Government Pension Scheme. Unless you specifically opt out in writing, you will automatically be admitted to the Pension Scheme. Employee contributions are 6% of salary.

Car Lease Scheme

    The successful candidate will be eligible to join the lead authority‟s car lease scheme.


    Subsistence allowances are paid in accordance with those for Elected Members as determined by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.

Relocation Scheme

    Full details of assistance is available upon request.

Annual Leave

    34 days annual leave plus bank holidays.

Working Arrangements

    You are required to devote the whole of your time to the duties of the post and not to accept any other office without the previous consent of the Council. The specified working week is 37 hours but the post-holder will be required to work additional hours as necessary. A scheme of flexible working hours is in operation.

Conditions of Service

    The appointment is subject to the Joint Negotiating Committee for Chief Officers as supplemented by the Council‟s Local Conditions of Service.

Medical Fitness

    The successful applicant will be required to complete a medical questionnaire and may be required to attend a medical examination in order to determine his/her ability to carry out the duties of the post.

Probationary Period

    A 6-month probationary period will apply to the successful candidate during which time they must demonstrate their suitability for the post.

Period of Notice

    The Council requires a minimum of 3 calendar months notice of termination, commencing on the first day of the month following that in which it is given.

    Issued by NRG Executive Spring 2008

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