English Heritage appoints Horniman boss as new Chief Executive

Image: Dr Nick Merriman (English Heritage)

Dr Nick Merriman, who also previously served as Director of Manchester Museum, will begin the role in the New Year.

Dr Nick Merriman, Chief Executive and Director of Content at the Horniman Museum and Gardens, will be English Heritage’s next Chief Executive, the charity announced today.

In the new role, Merriman will oversee the National Heritage Collection of over 400 historic buildings, monuments and sites across England, their collections, and the London blue plaques scheme.

Prior to the Horniman, Merriman was Director of the Manchester Museum and Director of Museums and Collections at University College London. While at the Museum of London, he was Curator of Prehistory and subsequently Head of the Department of Early London History and Collections.

Merriman will start as English Heritage’s Chief Executive early in the New Year. He takes over from Kate Mavor CBE who left the charity in June 2023 after eight years at its helm. English Heritage’s Chief Financial Officer, Mark Stuart-Smith, is currently serving as its Interim Chief Executive.


English Heritage’s Chair, Gerard Lemos CMG, said: “We are delighted that Nick will lead English Heritage.

“Given his expertise in public engagement and his brilliant track record at the Horniman, in Manchester, and at the Museum of London, Nick is perfectly placed to ensure we realise those aims.”

On his appointment, Dr Nick Merriman said: “The collection of sites in English Heritage’s care is unique and I am extremely excited to be joining the charity.

“Like many others, my childhood was spent clambering around English Heritage castles and I firmly believe that heritage is as much about people as it is about places, whether those who lived and worked there in the past or who like me, enjoy them today. I’m looking forward to introducing more people to these inspiring landmarks.”

Michael Salter-Church MBE, Chair of the Trustees of the Horniman Museum and Gardens, said: “The Horniman has benefitted so much from Nick Merriman’s leadership and vision during his five and a half years as chief executive, most notably winning Art Fund Museum of the Year 2022 and helping steer our ambitious Nature + Love project. We wish him well in his new role with English Heritage, which will undoubtedly flourish under his guidance, just as the Horniman has done.”