John Orna-Ornstein is director of curation and experience and part of the executive team at the National Trust, with responsibility for leading the organisation’s care for, and programming of, its historic places. The National Trust looks after around 500 heritage and natural properties in the UK, including 220 country houses and hundreds of miles of coastline. It has more than 5.7 million members.

He spent his formative years in Sussex and, while he now lives in Hertfordshire, that is where his heart remains. Places like Michelham Priory and Fishbourne Roman Palace, along with the National Trust’s Bodiam Castle and Ightham Mote, first inspired his love for heritage.

John was formerly director of museums for Arts Council England and head of London and national programmes for the British Museum, where he started his career as curator of Roman coins. He studied archaeology at UCL. His other interests include Brighton and Hove Albion football club (where he is a season ticket holder), wine, and walking, probably in that order of importance.


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