Museum Conservation Officer

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Museum conservation officers keep works of art and historic objects in good condition. They preserve, restore and care for items ranging from paintings, ceramics, textiles or furniture to archaeological and geological specimens. They are sometimes called a conservator.

The Work

Many conservation officers specialise in one area of work such as paintings, fossils or furniture. Others work with a wider range of objects. You could be:


The figures below are only a guide. Actual pay rates may vary, depending on:

The starting salary for museum conservation officers is usually around £17,000 to £21,000 a year. Experienced conservation officers earn around £25,000 to £31,000 a year. Senior managers can earn up to around £45,000 a year.


Employment Status UK %

Past Unemployment

Year Unemployed

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Getting In

Predicted Employment in Scotland

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What Does it Take?

You need to have:

You need to be able to:


Further training is on the job, combined with in-service and specialist training courses.

Getting On

More Information

The Institute of Conservation website lists degree and postgraduate courses in conservation subjects. According to the Museums Galleries Scotland website, there are over 400 museums and galleries in Scotland. They vary in size from the National Museum of Scotland, with many employees, to small local museums and galleries.

The Creative and Cultural Skills website has a careers section called Creative Choices which covers careers information, jobs and opportunities in the heritage and culture sector, including conservation work.


The following organisations may be able to provide further information.

Creative and Cultural Skills
Website (2):
Twitter: @CCskills

Creative and Cultural Skills is the Sector Skills Council for advertising, crafts, cultural heritage, design, music, performing, literary and visual arts. Creative Choices is their career information website.

Institute of Conservation (ICON)
Tel: 020 3142 6799
Twitter: @Conservators_uk

Museum Jobs: cultural sector recruitment

Museums Galleries Scotland
Tel: 0131 550 4100
Twitter: @MuseumsGalScot

National Museums Scotland
Twitter: @NtlMuseumsScot

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