The Natural History Museum is the UK’s most visited indoor attraction and a world-leading global scientific research centre. Our collection of more than 80 million natural science specimens is the world’s most scientifically important and underpins both our exhibitions and pioneering research programmes. We use the Museum’s unique collections and our unrivalled expertise to tackle the biggest challenges facing the world today, including: 

• The origins of our planet and life on it, and the impact of change;• The diversity of life and the delicate balance of ecosystems that ensure the survival of our planet;• Sustainable futures, including the security of our food supply, the eradication of disease and the management of mineral and ore scarcity. 

We recently published our strategy to 2031 based on our vision of a future where both people and the planet thrive. The strategy captures the public mood and the scientific advice of our times that there is a planetary emergency and institutions need to act. At its heart is our mission to create advocates for the planet and inspire millions globally to care about the natural world.   

The Museum is entering an exciting new phase in its development. There is an imperative to improve the conditions for the storage of our collections and plans to realise this by moving some collections to a new Centre at the University of Reading’s Thames Valley Science Park are currently in progress. New digital, analytical and genomic technologies are emerging, increasing the potential user base of the collections and enabling us to derive greater information from even the oldest specimens. These changes are facilitating exciting new research opportunities. Finally, a vibrant programme of temporary exhibitions will complement a planned refit of major galleries, and we are currently redeveloping the Museum’s gardens, creating outdoor galleries and new outdoor learning activities for young people.   

The Museum is an Arm’s Length Body with the Department for Culture, Media & Sport as its sponsoring government department. The Trustees of the Museum, led by new Chair Sir Patrick Vallance, have statutory duties under the British Museum Act 1963 and the Museums and Galleries Act 1992 for the general management and control of the Museum and for the appointment of the Director. Within the framework of these statutory duties, the role of the Board of Trustees is primarily to establish Museum policy, review performance, support the generation of income and endorse appointments to key management positions.

Sir Patrick Vallance Chair

Dr Douglas Gurr Chief Executive

Why the Natural History Museum is supporting Boardroom Apprentice

Diversity is one of the Museum’s core values, and we strive to build a workplace where everyone feels a sense of belonging. As we look to build a more diverse workforce, we want our management structures and the makeup of our Board of Trustees also to reflect this. Taking on a board apprentice provides us with an excellent opportunity to realise these goals and help our Board look at our work with fresh eyes, enabling us to make better decisions and develop more innovative solutions.  

We see this appointment as a genuine partnership and two-way interaction between the Museum’s Board of Trustees and the apprentice. The multi-faceted nature of the Museum will enable apprentices to experience several of our areas of work, including our science, commercial, policy and philanthropic pursuits. This experience will provide a holistic insight into participating within a prestigious public sector Board and meeting our apprentice’s personal development objectives. The Board – and wider Museum – will also look to embed our learnings from working with the apprentice into our overall diversity strategy.

Location of Board and Committee Meetings

Natural History Museum in South Kensington, with one virtual Board, and one Strategy Away Day location tbc.

Frequency and timing of board/committee meetings

Board and Committee meetings are held quarterly. Board Meetings run from 10.00 to 14.00. There may also be a voluntary tour at 9.00 before a meeting.

Date of Board Meetings (January 2024 – December 2024)

2024 Dates: 20 February, 21 May, 2 July, 17 September (Strategy Away Day), 19 November

Committee of the Boards and meeting dates (January 2024 – December 2024)

Audit and Risk Committee: 8 February, 25 June, and last two tbc.

Infrastructure Committee: 2 February, 29 April,18 June, 2 September, last one tbc.

Science Advisory Committee: Dates are to be confirmed. Someone will be in touch on this.