Explore Historic Environment Careers

In this section you can explore different job families in the historic environment, learn more about the different types of roles available in each area of work, and find useful links to relevant resources.

Don’t know what careers would best suit? You can find out what careers and jobs best suit your skills using a variety of free tools such as My World of Work, My strengths, Planit Career Match and Career Pilot.

Heritage Tourism

Are you interested in working at magnificent places including castles, abbeys, palaces, battle grounds, Iron Age forts, mills, and stately homes? Would you like to welcome visitors from all around the world? Are you passionate about sharing experiences, your knowledge and enriching people's lives? If so, consider a career in Heritage Tourism!

Heritage Tourism is a huge contributor to the Scottish economy, with millions of people from all over the world visiting our heritage attractions every year. Working in tourism allows you to welcome the world to Scotland and share the country’s incredible history and culture with a wide and varied audience.

Galleries, Libraries, Archives, and Museums

While often grouped together, Galleries, Libraries, Archives, and Museums (known as GLAM institutions) all have different functions in the sector, with many unique and varied roles available within. All these institutions traditionally look after historical objects, presenting and preserving them for the public to enjoy, and with the advance of technology, some employers are working completely online.

Conservation and Traditional Building Skills

Approximately 20% of our buildings, including people’s homes, shops, schools and hospitals, are built using historic methods. It is important that we use the same traditional skills and materials that helped to create these buildings when caring for them to maintain the historic environment in good condition so that we can continue to enjoy it for generations to come. If you enjoy practical and hands-on work, this area of the sector may appeal to you.

Traditional building craft skills are essentially those skills that were used to build historic buildings, such as stonemasonry, using lime and mortar, stained glass work, and even mosaics. Training in these skills means that our historic environment can be maintained and repaired with a combination of traditional skills and modern technology. 

Architecture, Engineering, Planning, and Surveying

Do you have a passion for design and buildings? Do you like finding creative solutions to problems? Are you passionate about the historic environment? Then a career in architecture, engineering, planning, or surveying with a focus on the historic built environment may be the perfect fit!

While architecture, engineering, planning, and surveying (AEPS) are not often viewed in the context of the historic environment sector, they are vital roles to maintain built heritage. These roles work together to repair, preserve, maintain, and record the built environment in a way that is responsive to social, cultural, and environmental issues.


While people often associate archaeologists with excavations, there are a lot more activities involved in archaeology such as historic building recording, artefact analysis, experimental archaeology, digital analysis and working with schools and communities. There is an ever-increasing number of roles available in archaeology, all different and all exciting!

Using a variety of practical and scientific methods ranging from excavation to radiocarbon dating, archaeologists investigate the past through the evidence that people have left behind - everything from microscopic pollen samples and tiny glass beads to bones, buildings and even landscapes. 

Landscapes and Gardens

Do you like nature and the great outdoors? Are you passionate about Scotland’s environment, flora, and fauna? If so, a career in landscape and gardens may be for you! From gardeners and landscape maintenance operatives to rangers and environmental professionals, there are plenty of roles you can choose from.

Staff working within this sector conserve and protect Scotland’s heritage. Gardens and landscapes play a major role in telling the story of an area and can be popular attractions for people to visit.