Heritage Consultant

Position: Heritage Consultant

Location: Torquay, Devon

Closing date: CLOSED

Contact term: 10 May -  30 June 2021

Contract value: £9,000 +VAT

(Click here for Education Consultant opportunity) 

Applications are invited from consultants with expertise in supporting museums and heritage sites to develop a three-year Heritage and Access strategy and provide advice on resilience.

The contractor must have a proven track record of working with heritage assets of national value, in both the private and charity sector, and be able to demonstrate previous success balancing curatorial responsibility with commercial viability.

The outcome is to deliver a Heritage and Access Strategy for the period 2021-2024 for Kents Cavern by 30 June 2021.  The Strategy must have pragmatic actions, aimed at enhancing access and conservation, widening participation and to secure the future resilience of the caverns.

This strategy must be a comprehensive document, tailored to the caverns, founded on best practice in managing heritage assets, with actions that realistically reflect funding streams available to the organisation.

The project must include research and advice on the following two strategic priorities, which must be embedded into the Heritage and Access Strategy:

1) Transitioning to a Trust model

  • An options review around repositioning the cavern’s operations under the umbrella of a charitable body (already in existence), to provide a more resilient future and wider participation.

2) Creating a Stone Age experience in and across Torbay

An evaluation of the need, and regional support, for creating a Stone Age experience across the English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark territory (Torbay), establishing Torbay as the centre for Stone Age Britain.

The report should specifically address:

  1. Raising the profile of Kents Cavern with stakeholders to demonstrate our credentials being of national significance, and the potential to drive a step-change in Devon’s visitor economy.  
  2. The outstanding international value of the Stone Age heritage and relevant partner organisations across Torbay, connected to Pleistocene heritage (2.6 million to 12,000 years ago) and the area’s association with the development of early earth science.


Deadline for submission of tenders is Friday 30th April 2021. Successful tenders will be invited to interview on Wednesday 5th May 2021 via Zoom. The contract will be awarded on Friday 7th May with a start date expected on Monday 10th May.

Value of consultancy

The budget for this contract is around £9,000 +VAT to include all travel and expenses.


10 May 2021 - 30 June 2021.

Line management

The successful candidate will report to the Managing Director, Nick Powe


Kents Cavern has a geological heritage spanning 400 million years and a connection to ancient people for over 500,000 years.   Located in Torquay, Devon, the caverns were meticulously excavated by William Pengelly between 1865 and 1880.  The caverns provided scientific proof for the antiquity of humankind and have been a showcave since June 1880.  The caves are open every day. 

The caverns operate as an independent heritage attraction owned by Kents Cavern Ltd. A charitable incorporated organisation (CIO no. 1154561) has existed since 2013 but has been relatively inactive for the past 12 months. The remit for education, conservation and heritage is fulfilled by commercial visitor revenues but we believe there is merit in channelling more of these activities for, public benefit, through the charity.   

The caves have an international reputation as one of Europe’s most important prehistoric sites. All operations and conservation activities are safeguarded by three statutory designations: Site of Special Scientific Interest (SX934641), Scheduled Monument (10717) and Geological Conservation Review.   The caves sit within a UNESCO designation as the English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark and Kents Cavern is a key promoter of this prestigious label.


Due to the current guidelines and restrictions relating to COVID-19, we anticipate that some of this work can be done remotely. Subject to restrictions, the successful consultant must allow time to visit and experience the caverns.


Apply by sending the following to [email protected] by 5pm on Friday 30th April 2021:

- A current CV

- A covering letter detailing your relevant experience and a short proposal on how you would approach the project.

- An overall cost for the work.

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