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Role details

Greenwich Hospital Advisory Board Member - Education

Application deadline 20 September 2023


Greenwich Hospital Advisory Board
Sponsor department
Ministry of Defence
Business, Change Management, Commercial, Transformation
Number of vacancies
Time commitment
Length of term
Initial term of 3 years
Application deadline
Midday on 20 September 2023

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Timeline for this appointment

  1. Opening date

    31 August 2023

  2. Application deadline

    Midday on 20 September 2023

  3. Sifting date

    13 October 2023

  4. Interviews expected to end on

    27 October 2023

Timeline dates are only an estimate and can change

About the role

Introduction from the Chair

Thank you for your interest in joining Greenwich Hospital’s Advisory Board.

 Greenwich Hospital has been providing support to serving and former serving Royal Navy and Royal Marine personnel and their families for over 325 years. Their wellbeing is at the heart of everything we do, as we aim to make a real and lasting difference to the lives of those in need of support. Founded in 1694, we are a unique Crown body and the oldest provider of Royal Navy charity. Our income comes from our quoted investment and commercial property portfolio and last year, we spent nearly £5m in grants and other charitable activity in areas ranging from education, housing to health and wellbeing, employability, and crisis support. We work in partnership with the Royal Navy and the navy charity sector and other stakeholders to ensure the current and future needs of our beneficiaries are met.

Greenwich Hospital is looking to appoint two new Advisory Board members at an important and exciting time in our development. It is an ambition to transform the organisation to ensure it is fit for today and beyond. We are looking to increase our impact by collaborating across the Royal Navy family and work is in progress to develop our charity and investment strategies to this end. Working with the Ministry of Defence team, we are planning a wholesale change of legal structure, to enable us to be fully in line with best practice. To do this requires primary legislation; but we are determined that the Greenwich Hospital of the future is constituted in such a way to ensure that the needs of our beneficiaries are front and centre and all we do is impact driven. Our Advisory Board members provide expert guidance and advice across all aspects of our work.

If this is a vision which interests you, please do read on. We look forward to hearing from you

Vice Admiral Martin Connell CBE

Second Sea Lord

Role description

Greenwich Hospital is looking for a new Advisory Board member with strategic leadership experience within the education sector to provide support and advice to the Board and executive team and to sit on the Royal Hospital School’s advisory Board of Governors. This role is unremunerated.

Since 1964, the Secretary of State for Defence is responsible for the governance of Greenwich Hospital on behalf of the Sovereign and as a representative of the Crown, supported in these duties by the Admiralty Board. Although members of the Greenwich Hospital’s Advisory Board discharge many of the functions of the Trustees of a registered charity, responsibility in law remains vested with the Secretary of State and day-to-day responsibility rests with the Director. This role is therefore purely advisory.
The new Advisory Board member will ensure that Greenwich Hospital receives sound, expert advice on matters regarding the current operations and future plans for the Royal Hospital School and the developing education charitable funding theme. They will provide support and constructive challenge to the Advisory Board and executive team and will use their specific skills and expertise to help the Advisory Board reach sound decisions. This includes leading non-executive advice and input on current and developing strategy in relation to the Royal Hospital School and contributing to wider discussions, scrutinising and evaluating board papers and providing guidance on new initiatives and governance requirements.
The Advisory Board member will help ensure that Greenwich Hospital complies with its governing charter and all other relevant legislation or regulations, and that it uses its resources exclusively in pursuance of its objectives, and in doing so fulfils its purpose for the benefit of the public. The new member will also act as an advocate and ambassador for Greenwich Hospital, supporting its aims and charitable objectives.

Organisation description

Greenwich Hospital has been providing support to serving and former serving Royal Navy and Royal Marine personnel and their families for over 325 years. Their wellbeing is at the heart of everything we do, as we aim to make a real and lasting difference to the lives of those in need of support. Founded in 1694, we are a unique Crown body and the oldest provider of Royal Navy charity. Our income comes from our quoted investment and commercial property portfolio and last year, we spent nearly £5m in grants and other charitable activity in areas ranging from education, housing to health and wellbeing, employability, and crisis support. We work in partnership with the Royal Navy and the navy charity sector and other stakeholders to ensure the current and future needs of our beneficiaries are met.

Person specification

Essential criteria

In its new Advisory Board member, Greenwich Hospital is looking for candidates with strategic leadership experience within the education sector to provide support and advice to the Board and executive team.

The successful candidate may be drawn from a wide range of backgrounds and be able to provide a range of skills and experience but will be able to demonstrate leadership experience in the education sector.

The successful candidate(s) should:   

 • Have substantial education sector experience in a senior executive position.

• Have experience of running a school’s commercial and infrastructure functions. • Have experience of delivering strategic or structural change in a school or group of schools.

• Have empathy for the mission and personnel of the Royal Navy and Marines, serving and past.

• Be able to attend up to 10 meetings including sub committees per year, held on rotation in Portsmouth or on Teams and at the Royal Hospital School. 

• Be able to attend ad hoc meetings with the Hospital and with partner charitable organisations as required perhaps twice per year. 

• Be able to work in a small team of senior colleagues

Candidates should be able to think strategically and provide constructive challenge to the team. Importantly, the new Advisory Board member will express empathy with and belief in the values and mission of Greenwich Hospital and the Royal Navy.

Desirable criteria

Experience of the UK boarding school sector would be an advantage, as would be knowledge of higher education, early years, and the charity sector.

The successful candidate would ideally have experience at Trustee or Board level in at least one of these sectors or in business.

Application and selection process

How to apply

Please apply via

Saxton Bampfylde Ltd is acting as an employment agency advisor to Greenwich Hospital on this appointment.

Candidates should apply for this role through our website at using code XBFEB

Click on the ‘apply’ button and follow the instructions to upload a CV and cover letter and complete the online equal opportunities monitoring* form.

The closing date for applications is noon on 20th September 2023

* The equal opportunities monitoring online form will not be shared with anyone involved in assessing your application. Please complete as part of the application process.

Overview of the application process

The assessment process
  1. The Approving Authority are responsible and accountable to Parliament for the public appointments made within their department. As a result, they must be consulted at every stage of the appointments process.
  2. An Advisory Assessment Panel (“Panel”) is appointed by Approving Authority to assist them in their decision making. The role of the Panel is to decide, objectively, which candidates meet the eligibility criteria for the role.
  3. At the shortlisting meeting the Panel will assess applications against the eligibility criteria and decide which candidates should be recommended for interview. The Approving Authority will then be consulted on the Panel’s recommended shortlist.
  4. Once the shortlist has been agreed by Approving Authority, you will be advised (by e-mail) whether you have been shortlisted. Those shortlisted will be invited to an interview.
  5. The Panel will meet again to interview candidates and determine who is appointable to the role. The names of all appointable candidates are provided to the Approving Authority. It is then for the Approving Authority to determine merit and decide who should be appointed. In some circumstances, the Approving Authority may choose not to appoint any candidates and re-run the competition.
  6. The Panel’s recommendations will be provided to the Approving Authority in a report which details the assessment method used and the outcome of each interview. They will then be asked to agree on the candidate(s) who should be appointed.
  7.  Once the decision on the appointment has been made, interviewed candidates will be advised of the outcome of their application. Successful candidates will be issued with their Terms and Conditions and a letter of appointment should they agree to take up the position.

Advisory Assessment Panel (AAP)

Panel Chair

Sarah Davies - RN Finance Director 

Representative of the Organisation

Deirdre Mills - Director, Greenwich Hospital 

Other Panel Members

Mark Pendlington - Royal Hospital School, Chair of Governors 

Advisory Assessment Panels (AAP) are chosen by the Approving Authority to assist them in their decision-making. These include a departmental official and an independent member. For competitions
recruiting non-executive members of a board (apart from the Chair), the panel will usually include a representative from the public body concerned. AAP’s perform a number of functions, including agreeing an assessment strategy with the Approving Authority, undertaking sifting, carrying out interviews in line with the advertised criteria and deciding objectively who meets the published selection criteria for the role before recommending to the Approving Authority which candidates they find appointable. It is then for the Approving Authority to decide who to appoint to the role.

Eligibility criteria

In general, you should have the right to work in the UK to be eligible to apply for a public appointment.

There are a small number of specialist roles that are not open to non-British citizens. Any nationality requirements will be specified in the vacancy details.

The Government expects all holders of public office to work to the highest personal and professional standards. 

You cannot be considered for a public appointment if:

  • you are disqualified from acting as a company director  (under the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986);

  • have an unspent conviction on your criminal record;

  • your estate has been sequestrated in Scotland or you enter into a debt arrangement programme under Part 1 of the Debt Arrangement and Attachment (Scotland) Act 2002 (asp 17) as the debtor or have, under Scots law, granted a trust deed for creditors.

When you apply, you should declare if:

  • you are, or have been, bankrupt or you have made an arrangement with a creditor at any point, including the dates of this. 

  • you are subject to a current police investigation.

You must inform the sponsor department if, during the application process, your circumstances change in respect of any of the above points. 

When you apply you should also declare any relevant interests, highlighting any that you think may call into question your ability to properly discharge the responsibilities of the role you are applying for. You should also declare any other matters which may mean you may not be able to meet the requirements of the Code of Conduct of Board Members (see Outside interests and reputational issues section below)

Security clearance

The successful candidate will be required to undertake Baseline Personnel Security Standard checks in line with the Civil Service guidelines. Additional Security Clearance may also be required for certain roles. This will be specified in the vacancy details. Further information on National Security Vetting can be found on the website here kingdom-security-vetting-clearance-levels/national-security-vetting- clearance-levels
The level of clearance required for this role is BPSS.

Additional information for candidates

Equality and diversity

The Ministry of Defence value and welcome diversity. The appointment will be governed by the Principle of Public Appointment based on merit with independent assessment and transparency of process. Successful candidate will need to demonstrate that they meet the criteria for this appointment.
We encourage applications from talented individuals from all backgrounds and experience across the whole of the United Kingdom. Boards of public bodies/Advisory Committees are most effective when they reflect the diversity of views of the society they serve and this is an important part of the Government’s levelling up agenda. We collect data about applicants’ characteristics and backgrounds, including information about people’s educational and professional backgrounds, so that we can make sure we are attracting a broad range of people to these roles and that our selection processes are fair for everyone. Without this information, it makes it difficult to see if our outreach is working, if the application process is having an unfair impact on certain groups and whether changes are making a positive difference.

Disability confident

We are a member of the Government’s Disability Confident scheme. We use the Disability Confident scheme symbol, along with other like-minded employers, to show our commitment to good practice in employing people with a disability. The scheme helps recruit and retain disabled people. 
As part of implementing the scheme, we guarantee an interview for anyone with a disability whose application meets the essential criteria for the role, set out in the advert, and who has asked that their application is considered under the scheme. Indicating that you wish your application to be considered under the scheme will in no way prejudice your application. By ‘minimum criteria,’ we mean that you must provide evidence which demonstrates that you meet the level of competence required under each of the essential criteria, as set out in the job-advert.
When you apply you will have the opportunity to select if you would like your application considered under this scheme.

Reasonable adjustments

Government departments are committed to making reasonable adjustments to make sure applicants with disabilities, physical or mental health conditions, or other needs are not substantially disadvantaged when applying for public appointments. This can include changing the recruitment process to enable people who wish to apply to do so.
Some examples of common changes are:
  • ensuring that application forms are available in different or accessible formats;
  • making adaptations to interview locations;
  • allowing candidates to present their skills and experience in a different way;
  • giving additional detailed information on the selection / interview process in advance to allow candidates time to prepare themselves;
  • allowing support workers, for example sign language interpreters;
  • making provision for support animals to attend.
When you apply you will have the opportunity to request reasonable adjustments to the application process.

Principles of public life

Holders of public office are expected to adhere to and uphold the Seven Principles of Public Life. These are:

  1. Selflessness - Holders of public office should act solely in terms of the public interest.
  2. Integrity - Holders of public office must avoid placing themselves under any obligation to people or organisations that might try inappropriately to influence them in their work. They should not act or take decisions in order to gain financial or other material benefits for themselves, their family, or their friends. They must declare and resolve any interests and relationships.
  3. Objectivity - Holders of public office must act and take decisions impartially, fairly and on merit, using the best evidence and without discrimination or bias.
  4. Accountability - Holders of public office are accountable to the public for their decisions and actions and must submit themselves to the scrutiny necessary to ensure this.
  5. Openness - Holders of public office should act and take decisions in an open and transparent manner. Information should not be withheld from the public unless there are clear and lawful reasons for so doing.
  6. Honesty - Holders of public office should be truthful.
  7. Leadership - Holders of public office should exhibit these principles in their own behaviour and treat others with respect. They should actively promote and robustly support the principles and challenge poor behaviour wherever it occurs.

Code of conduct for board members

The Government expects all holders of public office to work to the highest personal and professional standards. In support of this, all non-executive board members of UK public bodies must abide by the principles set out in the Code of Conduct for Board Members of Public Bodies. The Code sets out the standards expected from those who serve on the boards of UK public bodies and will form part of your terms and conditions of appointment.

Management of outside interests and consideration of reputational issues

Holders of public office are expected to adhere and uphold the Seven Principles of Public Life and the Code of Conduct for Board Members of Public Bodies. Before you apply you should consider carefully: 
  • any outside interests that you may have, such as shares you may hold in a company providing services to government; 
  • any possible reputational issues arising from your past actions or public statements that you have made; 
  • and/or - any political roles you hold or political campaigns you have supported; 
which may call into question your ability to do the role you are applying for.
You will need to answer relevant questions in relation to these points when making an application. Many conflicts of interest can be satisfactorily resolved and declaring a potential conflict does not prevent you from being interviewed. If you are shortlisted for an interview, the panel will discuss any potential conflicts with you during that interview, including any proposals you may have to mitigate them and record that in their advice to ministers. Alongside your own declaration, we will conduct appropriate checks, as part of which we will consider anything in the public domain related to your conduct or professional capacity. This may include searches of previous public statements and social media, blogs or any other publicly available information. The successful candidate(s) may be required to give up any conflicting interests and their other business and financial interests may be published in line with organisational policies. 
Details of declared political activity will be published when the appointment is announced, as required by the Governance Code (political activity is not a bar to appointment, but must be declared).

Status of appointment

As this is an office holder appointment, you will not become a member of the Civil Service. You will not be subject to the provisions of employment law.

Appointment and tenure of office

Appointments are for the term set out in this advert, with the possibility of re-appointment for a further term, at the discretion of the Approving Authority. Any re-appointment is subject to satisfactory annual appraisals of performance during the first term in the post. If re- appointed, the total time served in post will not exceed more than two terms or serve in any one post for more than ten years.

Pension and redundancy

This is an office holder appointment and does not attract any benefits under any Civil Service Pension Scheme. You will not be eligible for redundancy pay as you are not an employee. No other arrangements have been made for compensation upon the end of your term of appointment because an office holder who is appointed for a limited duration would have no expectation of serving beyond that period.

Application feedback

We will notify you of the status of your application. We regret that we are only able to offer detailed feedback to candidates who have been unsuccessful at the interview stage.

How to complain

We aim to process all applications as quickly as possible and to treat all applicants with courtesy. If you feel that you have a complaint about the way in which your application has been handled, please contact the MOD Public Appointments Team at
We will acknowledge your complaint upon receipt and aim to provide a response within 5 working days.

Data protection

The Cabinet Office will use your data in line with our privacy policy.

Contact details

For further information please contact Kate Hygate at the following email address;