Horse Power

Placement Details

Location: Remote working plus site visits for research and meetings with project stakeholders at National Trust properties around England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Duration: 3 months full time/ 6 months part time

Start Date: Flexible, and at the successful applicant’s earliest convenience.

Deadline for Expressions of Interest: Friday 1 April 2022

Placement Description:

Horses enabled and sustained life in England, Wales and Ireland until the early decades of the twentieth century. Without the efficient breeding, training, exchanging, stabling and management of horses, properties now in the care of the National Trust could not perform the variety of functions that their owners required of them.


Horses can provide insights into shifting patterns of politicking and sociability; highlight the twin concerns of equine and human bloodstock; explain artistic and architectural patronage and developments; alongside developments in agriculture and animal husbandry; and changing patterns of mobility. The materiality of horses permeates through the NT’s properties yet is often overlooked by scholars and visitors alike. These stories are global in scope, as equine exchange responded to and engaged with the development of the British empire.


This OOC Placement is designed to support the National Trust in developing a large-scale research project that will take horses as a starting point. To help develop a viable and competitive application, we require a researcher with an interest in archival and collections research to help map the NT’s relevant collections and start to identify key avenues for further research. The successful applicant will organise workshops with key National Trust curators and external stakeholders to advance the project and develop suggestions for on-property programming and visitor-facing interpretation.


This placement is an ideal opportunity for a researcher eager to develop their skills in working in partnership with the heritage sector.

Skills, knowledge or experience needed:

The successful applicant does not need to have a research specialism in equine histories, as guidance will be provided by project supervisors. We are looking for a student who has skills in archival research and the ability to organise events and activities to engage NT stakeholders with the project.


The successful applicant will work remotely, with the option to hot-desk with the Heritage Partnerships Team in Oxford, and will need to travel to a large number of NT sites in order to assess collections’ research potential. They will create a project plan in consultation with the project’s supervisors with the aim of creating a ‘toolkit’ for property engagement with the theme.

To apply:

To express interest in this placement, please email your CV and a brief supporting statement to by Friday 1 April 2022