Anthony Read

Read the staff profile for Anthony Read, Head of Collections and Learning


Anthony Read has been Head of Collections and Learning since November 2015. He is a member of the senior management team, with oversight of the overall strategic direction of NMI and is responsible for all aspects of the care of the 4 million objects in the collections. This includes management of the curatorial departments, Conservation, Registration, Education, Photography, Design and the Museum’s exhibitions programme.

Background & Career

Before appointment to his current position he was Head of Conservation at the National Museum of Ireland for 18 years. During this time he built the department from its foundation into a professional, state of art Conservation Department housed in some of the finest conservation facilities for a museum of the NMI’s size in Europe.  During his period as Head of Conservation, he was involved with, and led a number of major projects, most notably concerned with archaeological finds from the Irish wetlands  with their remarkable preservative powers. Projects of which he is especially proud include the investigation and conservation of the NMI’s bog bodies and the recovery and investigation of the Faddan More Psalter. He has lectured and published extensively on the findings.  As Head of Conservation he reformed the care of the collections at the NMI, ensuring that the reserve collections are kept in conditions with standards entirely appropriate to their long term preservation.

During the latter years of his period as Head of Conservation, he was also engaged as a part time lecturer with University College, Cork, where he taught on the MA programme in Museum Studies.

Read joined the National Museum of Ireland from Leicestershire Museums in 1997, where he was the Antiquities Conservator, leading the staff of the laboratory and working on major projects including  the Pioneer Anglo Saxon Helmet Burial and the Lockington Bronze Age gold hoard.

Qualifications & Memberships

His undergraduate degree is in Archaeological Conservation from University College, Cardiff. He holds a postgraduate qualification in Museum Studies from the University of Leicester, an MA in Architectural Conservation from de Montfort University and has undertaken specialist executive training at Harvard University’s J F Kennedy School of Government .

He is an associate member of the UK’s Museums Association, is accredited by the Institute for Conservation and Restoration in Ireland and is a Fellow of the International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works.