Royal School of Needlework

The Royal School of Needlework is seeking three new trustees over 2021. One should have Curatorial/Archival experience or background. Two need to have strong commercial finance experience and an understanding of investments.

Closing date for applications

Who we are

The Royal School of Needlework is the international centre of excellence for the art of hand embroidery. We teach, practise and promote hand embroidery. Based at Hampton Court Palace, we run four programmes: BA Degree, Future Tutors, Certificate and Diploma in technical hand embroidery and short courses and have a Studio for conservation, restoration and new commissions. We offer exhibitions and talks based on our Textile Collection and Archive and run a retail operation. Over the last twelve months our small team has completely pivoted the organisation to deliver online courses across three different time zones reaching people from New Zealand to the west coast of North America.

The Royal School of Needlework is seeking new trustees to replace those scheduled to complete their terms of office this year. We seek one with Curatorial/Archival experience as we are raising funds to catalogue and digitise the Textile Collection (4000 items +) and parts of the Archive (designs, workbooks, record books, photographs and more). We seek two poeple with strong commercial finance backgrounds. Financial trustees must be qualified and be comfortable with investments. These are voluntary roles with no remuneration, though reasonable expenses are reimbursed where occurred in the role. 

The Council is the governing body of the RSN, which is a registered charity, with responsibility for overall direction, financial management and holding the Chief Executive and Senior Management to account. The Council meets six times a year and, for the financial trustees the Finance and Investment Committee meets four times a year. Over the last year these meetings have all been online, however, we would hope to resume physical meetings soon. Council meetings take place at Hampton Court Palace, the RSN's home and Fiannce meetings take place in central London.

The RSN exists to keep the art of hand embroidery alive and it does this by teaching, practising and promoting hand embroidery in a variety of programmes, talks, exhibitions and events. Up to March 2020 we only taught face to face in the UK, US and Japan. Today we teach online and face to face and have customers from all over the world. In July we will host our first online International Summer School with over 200 participants.

We have modified our strategic plan in response to the pandemic and are looking ahead to the RSN's 150th anniversary in 2022  

We are actively seeking a broad range of applicants. Interest or abilty in stitch is not required.

Anyone interested in these roles and wishes to gain more insight can see our annual review and report at 

To discuss the roles please contact the Chief Executive, Dr Susan Kay-Williams on 07940177218

Supporting documents

  • Trustee-Specification-and-role-2021.docx - Download
Closing date for applications

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