Donald Insall Associates: Researcher/Assistant Researcher, London

Competitive salary
Full time

With over sixty years’ experience in the repair and renewal of listed buildings, Donald Insall Associates is uniquely placed to provide strategic advice on change and development within the historic environment. The practice has a dedicated Historic Buildings Consultancy to support clients embarking on heritage projects at all scales, from individual houses to urban masterplans. The consultancy team work on some of London’s most interesting and significant historic sites and buildings.

The team comprises architects, designers, architectural historians and former conservation officers and Historic England inspectors who work alongside a client’s chosen architect to analyse what is special about a building or place, guide alterations, and support clients through the planning process. Our overarching aim is to use our understanding of the past to revitalise historic buildings and, where appropriate, to guide new interventions.

Job Purpose
We are looking for a Researcher or Assistant Researcher to join our Historic Buildings Consultancy team, supporting projects across London and the Southeast. The team’s work plays an important part in the fee-earning structure of the London office and acts as a centre of expertise for the wider architectural team. The role would involve carrying out research and writing elements of the reports we produce, as well as assisting other members of the team.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • To work successfully as part of the wider historic buildings consultancy team to jointly produce written work and other advice as necessary.
  • To undertake both desk and archive-based research into the provenance and development of historic sites and buildings, their occupants, and their architects.
  • To assist with visual site surveys, compile descriptions of historic sites and buildings and assess their significance.
  • To assimilate all research undertaken into expert, well-written historic building reports.
  • To develop a good understanding of the Practice, its philosophy, members, areas of expertise, clients, and competitors.
  • Any other reasonable duties that arise from the nature and character of the post, as requested by the line manager or other designated team members.

Please note: In order to undertake all aspects of the role, the post holder will sometimes be required to visit a number of external sites, which may require climbing ladders and surfaces. 

Knowledge, Skills and Experience Required:

  • Sound knowledge and understanding of all periods of British architectural history, likely to be supported by an appropriate qualification (e.g. BA Architectural History, Art History or History and a Post Graduate certificate/diploma in Building Conservation or Architectural History). A commitment to continuously expanding this understanding through professional development.
  • Excellent research skills.
  • A demonstrable passion for the historic environment, and the ability to communicate this to non–experts in an accessible manner.
  • Excellent writing skills, and the ability to confidently draw together information gained from a variety of sources and distill this into succinct and accurate text which is a delight to read.
  • Self-sufficiency, flexibility, and adaptability: to be able to understand the link between time, client requirements and profit, and respond positively and proactively to changes to schedule or requirements in order to work effectively in a client-driven environment.
  • Ability to work effectively as part of a team and liaise with other team members at Insall, as required, and to act as a credible ambassador for the Practice in all that they do.
  • A good level of IT literacy.


  • Previous experience in a relevant field.
  • Familiarity with the roles of stakeholders in the heritage sector, such as local authorities, Historic England, and national and local amenity groups.
  • Membership of appropriate bodies, e.g. IHBC, ARB, CIfA and/or RTPI memberships.

Please email a CV and covering letter to

Further information and APPLY

Deadline for Applications: 8 December 2021

Donald Insall Associates is an Equal Opportunities employer.

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