Finance Manager – new job opportunity at Gainsborough’s House

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About Gainsborough's House

Finance Manager – new job opportunity at Gainsborough’s House

We have an exciting opportunity for a full-time Finance Manager to join the team at Gainsborough’s House to manage and develop all operational aspects of Gainsborough’s House finances through the development and maintenance of appropriate systems and procedures and to ensure all financial and legal requirements of the charity as a business, employer and professional body are met.

Company: Gainsborough’s House
Location: Sudbury, Suffolk
Salary: £33-35,000 (dependent upon experience) Reports to: Director
Hours: 35 hours per week, occasional weekends Holiday: 22 days, public holidays
Contract: permanent

Gainsborough’s House explores the life and art of Thomas Gainsborough. One of the greatest artists of his age, he is renowned throughout the world for his portrait and landscape paintings. The house, ‘a most excellent Brick Mansion,’ was bought by John Gainsborough, the artist’s father, in May 1722. Thomas Gainsborough (1727-88) was born in Sudbury and was baptized there at the Independent Meeting-House in Friars Street on 14 May 1727. He lived here until around 1740 when he was sent to London to pursue a career as an artist. He returned to Sudbury in the spring of 1749 until 1752 when he painted his celebrated Mr and Mrs Andrews. He never lost the influence of his native town and county. ‘Nature was his teacher, and the woods of Suffolk his academy,’ noted an obituary after his death in 1788.

In 1958 Gainsborough’s House Society was formed to purchase the house and establish it as a centre for Thomas Gainsborough. The Museum opened to the public in 1961 and has remained open for over 50 years. Gainsborough’s House has now commenced an £8.7m Heritage Lottery funded development project to bring Thomas Gainsborough to life for a new generation of visitors.


‘Reviving an Artist’s Birthplace: A National Centre for Gainsborough’ will enable Gainsborough’s House to engage and inspire a larger and more diverse range of visitors, secure the future of this nationally significant heritage and spearhead the regeneration of a market town. It will safeguard Gainsborough’s Grade I childhood home and garden; interpret and improve access to the most comprehensive collection of his art, display more works in a new showcase gallery; and explore his life in the special atmosphere of his home. Drawing on the history of Gainsborough’s weaving family, we will tell for the first time the story of wool and silk weaving in Sudbury. By creating significant exhibition spaces and increasing the heritage offer, the project will attract more visitors, create financial resilience and promote the exploration of the surrounding landscape so inspirational to Gainsborough and Constable, whose family collection we will display.

We are looking for a candidate with a professional accounting qualification who has 5 years experience of working at a high level in the charity sector, with good working knowledge and experience of IT software and accounting systems. You will have a flexible approach to work, be willing to be involved in assisting the Director in developing Gainsborough’s House and creating a sustainable and dynamic art gallery and historic house of national importance.

Good time management and the ability to prioritise your workload is an essential requirement.


Job title: Finance Manager
Reports to: Director of Gainsborough’s House Responsible for: Finance & Administration Assistant Contract Type: Permanent
Hours: 35 hours per week and occasional weekends Salary: £33-35k per annum


Gainsborough’s House, the childhood home of Thomas Gainsborough is a national centre for the exploration of Gainsborough’s art, the development of the English landscape and the art of printmaking. With Thomas Gainsborough as its inspiration it seeks to bring to life the art and ideals of Thomas Gainsborough to inspire a new generation of visitors.

Job Purpose

To assist the Director in developing Gainsborough’s House through the delivery of a £8.7 million capital project and creating a sustainable and dynamic art gallery and historic house of national importance.

Main Duties and Activities

Oversee all aspects of financial management in all areas of Gainsborough’s House. Work closely with the Director and participate in part of the management team in formulating strategy, monitoring progress including finance and investment meetings and achieving budgeted profitability.

Financial Management

The Finance Manager role includes:

  • Management of money – including cash flows in bank & investment accounts
  • Process and pay supplier’s invoices
  • Process income from many streams: bank, shop, cash, cheques, invoices to customers etc Invoices to customers – production and credit control
  • Processing all financial information through AccountEdge accounting software
  • VAT: Manage all aspects of VAT at Gainsborough’s House – including keeping appraised of changes to VAT by HMRC. Quarterly VAT returns (online) using AccountEdge
  • Payroll & associated personnel issues: calculate salaries and cost to GHS; weekly and monthly payroll using AccountEdge; manage pension scheme with Scottish Equitable (Aegon); manage all statutory documentation and correspondence including PAYE year end reporting to HMRC.
  • Gift Aid: manage gift aid systems and documentation at GHS; claim gift aid (normally annually)
  • Manage annual audit including annual shop and PWS stock takes

Budgeting and Reporting

  • Gainsborough’s House has a 10 year business plan for delivering the capital project and sustainable development following reopening in 2021.
  • Produce relevant reports for Finance and Board meetings.
  • Prepare papers and reports for, attend and minute Finance Committee and Investment Committee meetings
  • Prepare budgets in line with the Business Plan: produce Annual Budget (after discussion with Director and staff)
  • Performance Indicators: Manage collection of data with other staff
  • Produce quarterly accounts with Budget Forecast
  • Produce Year End Accounts
  • Produce budgets for funding applications as required by Director
  • Complete documentation and reports for Charity Commission, HM Revenue & Customs, and others as required

Reviving an Artist’s Birthplace

  • Reviving an Artist’s Birthplace: A National Centre for Gainsborough is an £8.7 million Heritage Lottery Funded (HLF) capital development project.
  • Maintain overall management of the budgets
  • Prepare financial reports for the Project Board and the NHF, including draw-downs Manage the cash flow and cash flow reporting
  • Manage payments to contractors
  • Financial reporting to Director


  • Line manager for Finance and Admin Assistant
  • Manage relevant volunteers and consultants

IT AND Services Management

  • IT development: Oversee office systems with IT support and ThankQ CRM Database development with support and development of new EPOS/Hospitality systems for re-opening of the House & Gallery upon completion of the capital project.
  • Insurance: Oversee general insurance cover (not government indemnity) for everything at Gainsborough’s House, including exhibitions, events, annual renewal, levels of cover etc.
  • Lotteries and Draws: Oversee statutory requirements to ensure GHS is within the law. Complete annual renewal with Babergh District Council. Prepare Statutory reports on draws as necessary
  • Maintain Fixed Asset register.
  • Utilities and telephone: Oversee contracts and terms of contracts for Gas and Electric and telephone providers (BT).


  • Support and work with Director as required in relation to strategic and operational priorities and improving systems and procedures.
  • Act as key-holder and member of the Duty Staff Rota
  • Undertake other ad hoc investigations and project management as required.
  • Attend relevant training courses and participate in staff development initiatives to improve knowledge and working practice
  • Any other reasonable tasks that might be required



Skills & Experience

  • Experience in a museum, gallery or heritage site
  • Exceptional written and verbal communication skills
  • IT Skills including databases
  • Demonstrable experience of working effectively as part of a team Proven ability to think and act strategically and to develop and implement practical and effective procedures
  • Experience of working with and managing volunteers
  • NHF experience essential
  • Experience of supporting funding applications for Public Funding & Private Trusts/Foundations
  • Full clean driving license and use of car

Knowledge & Accounting qualification – chartered accountant or AAT higher level Qualifications 5 years experience of working at a high level in the charity sector

Personal Attributes

  • Excellent interpersonal skills in dealing with people at all levels Ability to lead initiatives and bring people together
  • Strong organisation and planning skills
  • Highly proactive and self motivated
  • Adaptable and flexible
  • Strong decision making and problem solving skills
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • A belief in the need to make arts and heritage accessible to all Be prepared to work evenings and occasional weekends when required

Applicants should send their CV and application form with a cover letter to Mark Bills, Director of Gainsborough’s House, Gainsborough’s House, 46 Gainsborough Street, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 2EU or by email to to be received by 12 noon Monday 16th November 2020.

Shortlisted candidates will be contacted in the week of 16th November 2020 for interviews on 27th November 2020. These may be held via video call.

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