Series 2 Issue 2: Report on Local Authority Historic Environment Staff Resources 2020-2022

By Historic England, Place Services Consultancy, Association of Local Government Archaeological Officers

Fieldwork conducted in October 2020, April 2021 and April 2022 surveyed historic environment specialist staffing levels in local authorities in England. Data on staffing numbers by local authority has been published separately as part of the annual Heritage Counts. This report summarises trends in staffing numbers, and presents greater detail from additional anonymised survey questions on topical issues: in 2021 relating to employment of non-UK staff in the context of the conclusion of Brexit, and in 2020 and 2022 skills needs and skills gaps to help shape support for local authority teams.

The main findings are:-

  • Local authority heritage staffing is stabilising at around two-thirds of the staffing level of the high point in 2006, with some evidence of increasing confidence in future growth;
  • There is significant evidence for increasing skills gaps and recruitment problems;
  • There is awareness of the need for climate change adaptation skills in local authorities, particularly among conservation staff;
  • Local authority teams mainly include staff who are experienced in role;
  • There is little evidence of a significant Brexit effect on employee retention issues for local authority heritage teams;


  • Executive summary
  • Methodology
  • Surveyed organisations and survey response rate
  • Results
  • Accessing Local Authority staffing survey data

Additional Information

  • Publication Status: Completed
  • Pages: 9


If you require an alternative, accessible version of this document (for instance in audio, Braille or large print) please contact us:

Customer Service Department

Telephone: 0370 333 0607
Email: [email protected]