Take your career in the fine art restoration sector to the next level with Plowden & Smith

Founded in London in 1966, Plowden & Smith is a leading fine art conservation and furniture restoration company. Operating out of new purpose-built premises in Mitcham, our team of experienced, skilled restorers work on an extensive range of materials. All treatments are guided by contemporary ethical considerations and underpinned by industry-recognised standards of best practice. Plowden & Smith is committed to supporting employees with their continued professional development and training.

We advertise current vacancies on our website, however we are always interested in hearing from talented professionals at all stages of their careers. Please send CVs to info@plowden-smith.com. We will be in touch should a suitable vacancy arise.

Project Manager (Temporary)

Job brief

Plowden & Smith is looking for a Project Manager (Temporary) to support with the delivery of a number of international projects in Q1 2024, focusing on project resourcing, communications and operations.

The company’s projects department has grown significantly in recent years, with a large proportion of projects taking place in the Middle East. Clients are government bodies, logistics companies and institutions. Project scope typically covers the condition reporting, conservation and registration of objects and collections in preparation for shipping, exhibitions or museum openings.

Plowden & Smith has been contracted to provide services for several high-profile projects in Abu Dhabi and Saudi Arabia in early 2024. These will be set up and managed remotely by our London-based project management team; a high-performing, warm and friendly team with the drive to find solutions, overcome challenges and deliver exceptional services across a range of international projects.


  • Coordinating internal and external resources, travel and logistics for successful planning and execution of multiple projects.
  • Managing client communication and team liaison across various streams.
  • Providing general administrative, operational and team support for projects.
  • Managing budget and risk.
  • Reporting and escalating issues to management as needed.

Skills & Requirements

  • Very good educational background, with a strong working knowledge of Microsoft Office and project management principles.
  • Excellent written English and verbal communication skills.
  • Excellent client communication skills and stakeholder management.
  • Excellent organisational skills including attention to detail, prioritisation and multi-tasking.
  • Personable and team-oriented individual with ability to run project(s) independently with confidence.
  • Flexible, driven individual who thrives under pressure and is willing to work additional hours if required.
  • Availability to work away from London office for periods of time if required.

Job spec

The role is temporary, full-time, with a 3-month contract offered initially (with possibility of extension). The role is based at Plowden & Smith’s south London office, with some remote working a possibility. The jobholder will report to the Senior Project Manager.

Salary: Negotiable, dependent on experience.
Start date: 2nd January 2024
No agencies please. Must have right to live and work in UK.
Closing date for applications: 5pm, Thursday 7th December.
Interviews will be conducted and candidate appointed before Christmas.

If you’re interested in this role, we’d love to hear from you. Please send a CV and brief covering letter to lauren.healy@plowden-smith.com 

Paper Conservator


  • Producing estimates, condition assessments, treatment methodologies and treatment reports
  • Undertaking treatments of both historic and modern works on paper and paper-based ephemera focused on fine art and ranging from those executed on traditional substrates to varied modern materials and techniques.
  • Undertaking both structural and surface treatments including but not limited to – repair of tears, surface cleaning, flattening, stain reduction, adhesive and tape removal, washing, lining, consolidation, infilling, retouching, hinging, and mounting, framing.
  • Keeping stock of studio materials for the studio and pre-empting upcoming project requirements and ensuring these are ordered on time.
  • Liaising with the Conservation Manager and Client Services to ensure the smooth running of department workload 
  • The ability to communicate conservation treatments to clients and stakeholders.
  • Provide advice on preventive conservation measures for works on paper. 
  • Work with other departments on collaborative projects 

Personal Specifications


  • You will have a degree in paper conservation and a minimum of 4-5 years’ post qualification experience specialising in paper conservation. 
  • Experience with Fine Art 
  • Experience with Contemporary Art 
  • Reports are a vital part of this role. A clear, concise, technical writing style and excellent IT literacy are required. Knowledge of Microsoft suite and digital mark ups are necessary. 
  • Treatments are carried out both in the studio and in situ, requiring the willingness and ability to travel nationally and internationally as and when required
  • You will be an effective team worker with excellent communication skills


  • Experience working in private practice is desirable as you will be required to work under your own initiative and effectively manage your workflow to meet deadlines in a fast-paced commercial environment
  • Knowledge of the condition reporting application ‘Articheck’
  • ICON Pathway Member (financial support for maintaining this is provided)

This is a permanent, full-time position based in out of our Mitcham, London studio
5 days per week, offering a salary of between (£32,333,00 and £35,000) per annum. 
Applicants must have the right to live and work in the UK. 

Applications close 5TH January 2024, applicants encouraged to apply ASAP to be added to the shortlist. Interviews to take place WC/ 15th January. 

For further information or to apply for this position please submit a C.V, digital portfolio and an example of a Condition Report, to emily.harris@plowden-smith.com

Why work for Plowden & Smith?

  • Work with some of the world’s most rare, beautiful and interesting artworks and artefacts, as well as national and international collections
  • Work in a stimulating, creative environment
  • Free entry to museums and exhibitions being held in the UK and around the world
  • Opportunities throughout the year to attend preview nights and private view events
  • Personal Continued Professional Development fund
  • Child Care Voucher Scheme
  • Cycle to Work Scheme
  • Hybrid Working


About Plowden & Smith

Founded in London in 1966, Plowden & Smith is a leading fine art and furniture conservation and restoration company.

In December 2018 we moved to purpose-built premises in Mitcham where our team of experienced and skilled conservators and restorers work on an extensive range of materials. All our object treatments are informed by science, guided by contemporary ethical considerations and underpinned by industry-recognised standards of best practice. Staff are committed to continued professional development and training.