Facilities Apprenticeship (24 month contract)

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Company: Gainsborough’s House Sudbury, Suffolk
Location: Sudbury, Suffolk
Salary: £9.50 per hour
Reports to: Facilities Manager
Hours: 35 hours per week, occasional weekends
Holiday: 22 days, public holidays
Closing date: Noon on Monday 3rd October
Interview date: Week commencing 10th October 2022
Application Form: https://gainsborough.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/Application-Form-Facilities-Apprentice.doc

Name of Apprenticeship: Facilities Services Operative Apprenticeship

Training Provider: Hospitality Industry Training

Apprenticeship Level: Level 2

Join the team developing Gainsborough’s House as one of the leading heritage attractions in East Anglia! Gainsborough’s House will be a major visitor attraction in the East of England as a world-class museum, art gallery, and study centre.  It has built four new exhibition galleries to display historic and contemporary exhibitions of international appeal and expand its ability to attract audiences. Due to open in late Autumn this year, the Facilities Apprentice will be part of the team that maintains this impressive venue.

This contract apprenticeship post is responsible to the Facilities Manager and based in Sudbury, Suffolk. Responsibilities will include ensuring that Gainsborough’s House buildings and grounds meet the needs of both visitors and staff.

The apprenticeship, supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, is designed to offer a route for people to access a career in the cultural heritage sector. You will be mentored throughout the contract to help support your professional development and receive formal training.

The successful candidate will have excellent organisational skills, demonstrable enthusiasm for the sector and willingness to learn. You will be someone who can work under your own initiative and as part of a small team. A flexible and positive approach is essential.

Gainsborough’s House

Gainsborough’s House is a national centre for the art of Thomas Gainsborough at the artist’s childhood home. With Gainsborough as its inspiration, it seeks to bring his art and ideals to life to inspire a new generation of visitors. Our mission statement is ‘To promote the wider knowledge, appreciation and enjoyment of the art of Thomas Gainsborough within the context of the eighteenth century and the inspiration of the Suffolk landscape and to preserve and enhance Gainsborough’s House and its collections for the benefit of present and future generations’.   

The 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 Brickt 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, as a young teenager, 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. The House has completed a recent £8.7m National Lottery funded development project in its aim to bring Thomas Gainsborough to life for a new generation of visitors.

Further details are available from Trudy Pickerin on trudy@gainsborough.org

Applicants should send their application form with a covering letter to:

Trudy Pickerin, Gainsborough’s House, 46 Gainsborough Street, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 2EU 

or via email:  trudy@gainsborough.org 

DEADLINE: Return your applications by noon on Monday 3rd October

Interviews will be held week commencing 10th October 2022

Job title: Facilities Apprentice 
Reports to: Facilities Manager
Liaises with: Curatorial, reception, cafe staff and volunteer gardeners
Hours: 35 hours per week during the contract period
Salary: £9.50 per hour 

Job Purpose 

The Facilities Apprentice will support the Facilities Manager and work alongside the operational team to ensure that Gainsborough’s House buildings and grounds meet the needs of both visitors and staff.  This is an ideal role for an aspiring candidate at the beginning of their career, with an interest in heritage and the unique museum and gallery environment of Gainsborough’s House. 

Main Duties and Activities

  • Developing a sound understanding of Gainsborough’s House Management & Maintenance Plan.
  • Ensuring that the facilities – such as reception; galleries; exhibition rooms; café; shop; offices; access; and welfare – are clean, safe and in good repair so that Gainsborough’s House can operate smoothly and effectively. Assisting with the preparation of spaces for exhibitions and events.
  • Assisting the Facilities Manager in the management of the environmental/ heating, security and fire prevention systems. 
  • Assisting in securing the site, opening and closing rooms and buildings as required, and the management of site emergency and evacuation procedures. 
  • Assisting in the management of the utility systems including reading energy meters and monitoring environmental control/ heating systems.
  • Assisting staff in the organisation and delivery of paintings, exhibition material and stock.
  • Assisting the Facilities Manager in overseeing building work being carried out on-site in accordance with work specifications and health & safety regulations.
  • Supporting the Facilities Manager in carrying out minor repairs and maintenance.
  • Helping identify building problems/ defects, collating and analysing information.
  • Dealing with enquiries from members of staff, contractors and members of the public.
  • Complying with Gainsborough’s House policies and procedures and reporting any concerns to an appropriate person.
  • Other related tasks as deemed appropriate

Additional Information

The role involves some physical elements including lifting, using machinery and ladders.

Attributes Description 
Skills & Experience An enthusiasm to learn 
Hands on experience of working with buildings
Good communication skills
Ability to work calmly under pressure
Effective team worker
Knowledge & Qualifications GCSE grade A-D (Level 3 and above) in English, Maths and ICT or equivalent.
If English and Maths are not held at grade C (Level 4) or above, you will be offered and need to pass English and Maths Functional Skills level 1 during the Apprenticeship.
Personal Attributes An enthusiasm for the Heritage sector and an interest in developing heritage skills Reliable and positive attitude
Attention to detail
Adaptable and flexible 
Willingness to work some weekends and evenings

Equal Opportunities

Gainsborough’s House is committed to providing equality of opportunity for all staff and welcomes applications from all individuals for advertised jobs that match their skills and interests. We welcome applications from all sections of the community. We particularly encourage applications from Black, Asian and minority ethnic candidates.