Hilary McGrady to be next director-general of the National Trust

Promoted from within, she will succeed Helen Ghosh in March next year

Hilary McGrady
Hilary McGrady

The National Trust has promoted Hilary McGrady to the role of director-general.

McGrady, who will succeed Helen Ghosh in March, has worked for the trust for the past 12 years, most recently as the charity's chief operating officer. She is the first director-general to be appointed internally for 16 years.

McGrady trained in graphic design and worked in branding and marketing in the drinks industry before becoming director of a national arts charity.

In 2002 she became chief executive of Belfast's unsuccessful bid to become European Capital of Culture. She then became a cultural tourism consultant before joining the trust as the charity's regional director, first in Northern Ireland, then Wales and finally London and the south east.

"This is a charity I love because it looks after the things that matter to me personally: the outdoors, the arts, heritage, nature and beauty," she said.

Tim Parker, chair of the trust, said the board had chosen McGrady unanimously.

"Hilary's appointment followed a rigorous selection process during which we considered a range of excellent candidates from a variety of backgrounds and organisations," said Parker.

Ghosh, who said in July that she would leave to become master of Balliol College at Oxford University, oversaw a strategy that has seen membership and visitor numbers reach all-time highs, the charity said.

A trust spokesman said the director-general's salary was set at £191,000 in 2016 and McGrady would earn the same unless the senior management remuneration committee set a new pay award for the next financial year.

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