Apprentice Josie Parry smiles at the camera from a historic viewing gallery

Meet Former Listing and Casework Apprentice, Josie Parry

Here we interview Josie about the second half of her apprenticeship and her new role. Read Josie’s first interview here. Josie’s apprenticeship was generously funded by the Benefact Trust.

Meet Josie Parry, former Listing and Casework Apprentice

Josie Parry undertook the Historic Environment Advice Assistant apprenticeship in 2021-2023 while working as a Listing Assistant in the Historic England London office. She’s now completed her apprenticeship, receiving a Distinction, and is working at Historic England in a new role as a Historic Environment Record Officer for the Greater London HER.

Tell us about the second year of your apprenticeship.

We started to have more conversations about the end-point assessment process alongside continued learning and training. I was able to have more complex chats with the rest of the apprentices, such as best conservation practice and heritage loss due to things like climate change.

I really started to understand where my role sat within the wider sector and what I wanted to do after my apprenticeship career-wise.

Josie's Assessment Project

The main part of the End Point Assessment is the project and Q&A, where you have to complete a project of your choice within eight weeks. For my project, I assessed an Eel, Pie and Mash shop in Deptford for listing. This included writing the reports for each stage of the assessment process and the final List entry with Reasons for Designation. You then have a short Q&A session with an assessor where they ask questions about the project, ensuring you don’t miss anything out after all that hard work!


You’ve recently moved into a new permanent role at Historic England. What is the role and what does the job entail?

I'm now a Historic Environment Record (HER) Officer for Greater London. We manage a large database called the HER that contains information on the archaeology and built heritage of London. My role includes providing search data for heritage professionals and consultancies that will support planning applications, as well as for academic research. This service ensures that heritage is accounted for in the planning process!

How do you think your apprenticeship prepared you for this role?

I wouldn’t be able to do it without the apprenticeship! It's given me such an overall foundational understanding of the sector and architectural history and archaeology. It has allowed me to build relationships with other teams and apprentices from a wide range of organisations outside of Historic England.

You're respected as a colleague and your contributions are taken seriously. That's something I've really appreciated.
Josie Parry, former apprentice, now a Historic Environment Record Officer at Historic England

How would you summarise the apprenticeship experience at Historic England?

It’s been great. You spend a lot of time with people; I think being around so much expertise daily is an amazing and unique way to learn. 

You're trusted with your own workload, which is a great way to learn through practice. You're respected as a colleague, and your contributions are taken seriously. That's something I've really appreciated. I’m really grateful to have had this opportunity thanks to funding from the Benefact Trust.

What was the highlight of your apprenticeship with Historic England?

I think in terms of in the workplace, it was seeing my first list entry published on the National Heritage List for England (NHLE). It was such a pinch-me moment. It was for a WW1 War Memorial in Knowlton that is described as a thankful village, meaning all the enlisted soldiers returned home alive by the end of the war.

What’s next for you? Anything exciting on the horizon in your new role?

With the HER, my colleagues are primarily archaeologists, and I have been brought in with more of a built heritage learning. So, I will keep the listed buildings up to date on the HER, and I'll also be consulted by the listing team for any new information on buildings.

I am also excited to make the HER more inclusive, diverse, and accessible, such as by making the records shorter and using accessible language. That's something I'm really passionate about. The training made me so much more aware of issues of contested heritage and also the lack of inclusive stories about so many different types of “hidden” history. We have the ability to be real champions for this through the HER. My colleague and I are working on adding more LGBTQ+ stories to the HER and possibly adding rainbow plaques to create walking tours. That's something I'm really excited about.

Funded by

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