UK Government

News Distribution Service: Appointment of new Deputy Surveyor of The Queen’s Works of Art

Press Release   •   Feb 09, 2010 10:36 GMT

Issued by the News Distribution Service on behalf of the Royal Collection Trust

Her Majesty The Queen has appointed Mr Rufus Bird to the position of Deputy Surveyor of The Queen's Works of Art.  Mr Bird is currently a Director of Christie’s, London, where he is responsible for sales of English Furniture.

He will join the Royal Collection on 7 June and will succeed Jonathan Marsden, who takes over from Sir Hugh Roberts as Director of the Royal Collection and Surveyor of The Queen’s Works of Art on Sir Hugh’s retirement at the end of April.  The Deputy Surveyor is a member of the Management Committee of the Royal Collection, one of the five departments of the Royal Household.

Rufus Bird, who is 35, has worked for Christie’s since 1997 and has been a furniture specialist since 1999. In 2004 he was appointed Associate Director and in 2008 Director with responsibility for English Furniture (1660-1860).  He researched and catalogued the furnishings of Dumfries House in Ayrshire and Tyntesfield in Somerset.  Mr Bird is a graduate of Peterhouse, Cambridge, where he studied History of Art.  He is married to Arabella and has two children.

The  Royal  Collection,  one  of  the  largest  and  most  important  art  collections  in  the world,  is  held  in  trust  by  The  Queen  as  Sovereign  for  her  successors  and  the Nation.  The Works of Art section is responsible for a high proportion of the contents of the royal palaces, including furniture, sculpture, European and oriental porcelain, gold and silver, tapestries and weaponry.

Sir Hugh Roberts, Director of the Royal Collection, said, 'Rufus Bird will bring with him a wealth of knowledge and experience from his time at Christie’s.  This will be of great value to the Royal Collection in the years to come. We greatly look forward to working with him.’

Rufus Bird said, ‘I am deeply honoured to have been appointed to this position and I very much look forward to working at the Royal Collection.’

Further enquiries: Public Relations and Marketing, the Royal Collection,
telephone: 020 7839 1377,

Notes to Editors

1. The Royal Collection is on display at the principal royal residences, all of which are open to the public.  These include Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, Kensington Palace, the Banqueting House and Osborne House. The Queen's Galleries in London and Edinburgh, and the Drawings Gallery at Windsor Castle have a programme of changing exhibitions to show further areas of the Collection to the public.  Over 3,000 objects from the Royal Collection are on long-term loan to museums and galleries around the UK and abroad.

2.   The Royal Collection receives no Government funding or public subsidy.  It is administered by the Royal Collection Trust, a registered charity in England and Wales (1016972) and in Scotland (SCO39772). Income generated by the Royal Collection Trust from the public opening of Windsor Castle, Buckingham Palace, the Palace of Holyroodhouse and The Queen’s Galleries, and from associated retail activities, supports curatorial, conservation and educational work, loans and travelling exhibitions, and projects to increase public access.


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