Blogs from CaP

Come and Join Us at CaP!

The Crime and Punishment Collections Network is an Arts Council England Subject Specialist Network. Our aim is to provide support to historic collections relating to crime and punishment–whether prisons, police or courts–through the creation of a network of like-minded members. Our members include universities, archives, libraries, heritage centres, museums and historic sites, in addition to staff from the prison, court and police services. We represent, promote and assist museums, libraries, archives and heritage sites which either hold collections or manage sites related to the topic of criminal justice. In July 2016 CaP were delighted to be awarded a grant of £30k grant from Arts Council England, supplemented with a grant from the Police History Society for its ‘Re-thinking CaP’ project. The network used it to survey collections of crime and punishment across the UK, in order to map the current state, location and accessibility of CaP collections, the results of which form a searchable database on a new website This will enable researchers to access both collections and the histories of individual institutions. We also run a yearly Annual General Meeting, which takes place at a crime museum, or other heritage space at varying locations around the UK.

Following on from the ‘Re-thinking CaP’ project, we have recently appointed new Committee members who are helping to reinvigorate the group and take it forward. However, we still need a Chair to play a strategic role in representing the vision and purpose of the organisation.  The Chairperson ensures that the management committee functions properly, that there is full participation at meetings, all relevant matters are discussed and that effective decisions are made and carried out. To plan and chair meetings (including committee meetings and the AGM) in accordance to the governing document. As the person who comes on board will be new to CaP, it is expected that in the short-term the Vice-Chair will support and guide the Chair in their new role.

The majority of our business is conducted by email but there are roughly two committee meetings per year and one AGM (one committee meeting may be held the same day as the AGM). Our meetings are usually held in Birmingham. Becoming part of CaP would be an ideal opportunity for a curator or heritage employee looking to make new connections or seek professional development, so if you are enthusiastic, organised, professional, a good team player and could commit to a minimum of two years then we would love to hear from you.

The role includes the following responsibilities:

  • To ensure matters are dealt with in an orderly, efficient manner.
  • To bring impartiality and objectivity to meetings and decision-making.
  • To facilitate change and address conflict within the board.
  • To review governance performance and skills.
  • To plan for recruitment and renewal of the Management Committee.
  • Managing Committee business outside of the meetings (e.g. making sure projects are on track) along with other officers.
  • To keep an overview of the organisation’s affairs.

Qualities and Skills Required:

  • Excellent leadership and team-working skills.
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Impartiality, fairness and the ability to respect confidences.
  • Ability to ensure decisions are taken and followed-up.
  • Good time-keeping.
  • Tact and diplomacy.
  • Experience of organisational and people management
  • Knowledge of the heritage sector / fund-raising / community groups would be an advantage.


Time Commitment:  The role of Chair requires an estimated commitment of an average of 10 hours per month. We are all volunteers and cannot offer a wage to any of our team members.


If you are interested in this role please contact us at or write directly to Heather Shore (