As CEO of Royal Greenwich Heritage Trust, Tracy worked with the Founder Trustees to register the charity in May 2014 and has, since then, worked closely with the Chair to develop the governance of the charity. Having worked in the sector for 15 years, Tracy believes in the power of museums and heritage to change the way we think.
These butterflies, gifted by a local collector 100 years ago, form the basis of our collection. To me they represent the diversity of stories the Trust is able to share from all over the world, whether through our buildings or the objects in our care.
CHARLTON HOUSE MANAGER
Edward Schofield is originally from the Pennine village of Littleborough in Lancashire. He studied in Liverpool in the early nineties and received a degree in English. His CV includes positions in retail and admissions at National Museums & Galleries on Merseyside, volunteer management at The V&A Museum and visitor services, events, marketing and communications at Somerset House. Edward leads development at Charlton House, and plays a key role in the Leadership Team of the Trust.
I see this carving every day when I get into work. The date the building was started is carved into the stone above the main entrance and this, the year the building was completed, is carved above the fireplace in our office. I love the way the woodcarver playfully fashioned the number six.
HERITAGE & INTERPRETATION MANAGER
Isabel has worked in the museum sector since 1994. She is passionate about bringing history to life through playful, fun and engaging programming - whether actor-led performance, practical art and craft or digital technology. Part of the Leadership Team, Isabel's focus is on heritage and interpretation for the Trust.
My favourite items are a Handwritten Script and First Proof of The Magic City, donated by the writer, Edith Nesbit. Edith Nesbit, best known for writing The Railway Children, moved to Well Hall, Eltham in 1899 where she lived for 22 years. There she wrote many of her novels including The Magic City. The book’s main character, Philip is thrown into a new life when his older sister marries. He entertains himself by building a giant model city, which he then magically finds himself in.
"'Oh, Helen, I don’t want to.’
‘Then don’t,’ said Helen.
‘Ah, but I do want to, too.’
‘Then do,’ said she.”
The Magic City, E. Nesbit
LEARNING & PARTICIPATION OFFICER
Kayleigh Edun works with a range of audiences including schools, colleges, universities and families. She develops and delivers school sessions, holiday activities and special events for Charlton House and the Heritage Centre that bring the heritage of Greenwich to life.
The Princess Alice disaster is Britain’s worst recorded inland water incident and is a significant Victorian human interest story to me which has largely been forgotten in modern memory. Our rare photograph from 1878 illustrates the scale of the tragedy.
COMMUNITY OUTREACH OFFICER
Helen works with communities across the Borough of Greenwich to bring to life the collection and archive of Royal Greenwich Heritage Trust. Currently Helen is delivering a community art project working with the natural history collection and local arts practitioners to share skills and explore the diverse histories in Greenwich. You can find out more about this project by clicking this link.
The natural history collection ranges from the wonderfully ordinary, everyday sights you could expect to find in Greenwich, to far less ordinary creatures such as the armadillo. I love sharing the collection with the communities and finding significant connections to individual people.
Carolyn has worked at Greenwich Heritage Centre since 2013, first as a volunteer and then as a Project Officer working on the Trust’s First World War Centenary projects alongside partner organisations such as the Royal Borough of Greenwich. Currently Carolyn is the Facilities Manager, working with the Trust’s tenants and across the sites - Charlton House, Greenwich Heritage Centre and the war memorials - looking after the buildings, staff and visitors.
I am currently working on a small project to open up the Summer House at Charlton House. On one of the beams in the roof is some graffiti attributed to Italian POWs who reputedly helped repair the house after bomb damage in world war two. The beautiful little Summer House at the front of the house is attributed to Inigo Jones and likely built sometime in the early 17th century.
SEARCH ROOM SERVICES OFFICER
Jonathan has worked at the Heritage Centre since it opened in 2003. In his current role he assists individuals as well as corporate clients on all aspects of Greenwich history and works as part of the curatorial team on exhibitions and displays. With a degree in Art History, Jonathan specialises in the Trust’s collection of paintings and drawings.
Caulking A Sailing Vessel by Henry Bright (mid-19th century watercolour). This unusual scene depicts a ship on the Isle of Dogs having its hull sealed with melted pitch. Greenwich Hospital is a shadowy presence on the far side of the Thames.
SEARCH ROOM SERVICES OFFICER
Pauline has worked in the libraries and archives sector for 15 years and has a keen interest in social history. In her current role working in the Heritage Centre’s search room, Pauline enjoys helping both the public and businesses with their research and enquiries. She specialises in family history research, and is currently in the process of cataloguing the Heritage Centre’s large deeds collection to provide a useful resource for family and house history researchers.
One of my favourite items in the collection are the deeds relating to The Globe Tavern in Royal Hill, Greenwich. The deeds contain a wealth of information, charting the social history of the pub from the late 18th century until the late 19th century.
COLLECTIONS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER
Mary has worked at the Heritage Centre since 2004, managing the collections. Her main role is to oversee the storage and care of the collections and to assist with exhibitions and projects using the collections. She enjoys working with the diverse range of objects in the collections including archaeology, social history, fine art, photographs and archives.
I love this fragment of a statue of a Roman Arm, found in Greenwich Park. It is thought that it probably represents Diana the goddess of hunting. It is 2/3 life size and made of oolite.
Nadia is responsible for documenting and caring for our collection of weird and wonderful objects. She joined the trust in 2016 after completing her PhD in Ancient Roman History, and has been working and volunteering in the museums sector since she was 14 years old.
My favourite object is this clay brick with a cuneiform inscription that dates to the reign of King Nebuchadnezzar II. The inscription is actually a mistake, reading back to front in places, as the worker who stamped the script onto it seems to have mixed up the bits of the metal stamp! It’s a simple, human mistake that we can all relate to, but it happened thousands of years ago.
VISITOR ASSISTANT & FRIENDS SECRETARY
Megan has worked for RGHT since 2014. She is one of the first people you meet on a visit to Charlton House helping with bookings, tours or venue hire and manages enquiries about the local area.
I love the history of Charlton House. My favourite part is the tiles. They are intricate and detailed and showcase Jacobean style, like the rest of the house.
Imogen has worked for RGHT since 2014. She works in Charlton House’s office organising bookings, dealing with general Trust enquiries, and working with various community groups. Imogen also handles event bookings, including weddings and other special events at Charlton House.
I love being surrounded by all the history at Charlton House. Discovering what lay behind the door to the vault, the contents of which were unknown for years, was the highlight of our year at the House.
Chrissie has been working at the Heritage Centre since it opened in 2003, having arrived as part of a ‘job lot’ with the Borough Museum collections. She is part of the front-of-house team, sharing reception and administrative duties with her colleague Sabrina.
I have a fondness for the oddities in the collection - artefacts like the mummified cat, displayed in a cabinet of curiosities. I have a particular affection for the fifty million year-old fossilised sharks’ teeth unearthed at Lesnes Abbey, purely for the delight and wonder reflected in children’s faces on finding them.
Karen has worked at Charlton House since 2009. She started at Charlton House as a Visitor Services Assistant, dealing with bookings, weddings, and building up a client list who continually utilise Charlton House. Currently Karen is Finance Manager for RGHT and manages the vast range of community groups that regularly use the House.
I love all the ceilings at Charlton House as they each contain beautifully intricate details which are unique to each room. However, the chandlers at Charlton House form the centrepiece of these ceilings and illuminate the beautiful designs swirling around them.
Donna has worked at Charlton House since 2001. She grew up locally in Charlton and visited the Old Library as a child, when it was a public library. She enjoys hosting and all manner of catering and baking, both in and outside of working with the Trust.
I love the mulberry tree outside of Charlton House because it’s beautiful when its in bloom and also so very old. I get to see it almost every single day of the 15 years I’ve worked here.
Clive grew up locally and as a youngster used to run around the grounds of Charlton House. He has previously worked at The Rose and Crown in Greenwich and the bars in the Houses of Parliament.
I have chosen the Study as it houses a small introductory gallery and display cases containing objects discovered in the grounds. I always send customers there so that they can learn more about the history of the House.
Hakeem Shittu lives locally, and has been a porter at Charlton House since 2004. He is married with three children.
I have chosen this detail from the fireplace in the White Room on the second floor at Charlton House. I like this image because of the style in which the King represented, travelling on a chariot during the Jacobean period.
Abayomi Lawal works at Charlton House as a Porter since 2005. He is one of the House’s porters with the responsibility of implementing the day to day running of events in the building. He deals with events setup, enquiries and viewings for potential bookings such as meetings, conferences, weddings, clubs, societies, religious groups and paranormal events. He is a First Aider and Security Industry Authority (SIA) certified.
My favourite part of Charlton House is the White Room, which contains a marble replica and magnificent fireplace with biblical and classical themes. It was made of plaster but was painted to look like marble in 1980 during a TV production.