The Royal Household have this week begun advertising for a new Head Housekeeper at Windsor Castle. The job, which is for £35,000 per year (plus ‘benefits’) is ‘to ensure the highest standards of cleanliness, presentation, and general upkeep of all accommodation.’
Windsor Castle is the oldest occupied castle in the world.
The job also involves working at Frogmore House nearby the Castle (a former Royal Residence) with cleaning team. The desired applicant would have experience working as head housekeeper elsewhere and should also have ‘the drive and desire to lead change and contribute to new ways of working’.
Working in the Royal Household is no easy task. Staff always say there is a heavy demand placed on them at all times, though all say that working for The Queen and the Royal Family is a huge privilege and though some complain about the pay, hundreds of prospective footmen, chefs, cleaners and house staff apply every year.
According to the job description on the Royal Website, key focus areas will be quality guest services, staff management and ensuring the Castle and its surrounds are presented to the standards expected of a Royal residence.
Insight into ‘Castle life’ for staff is rarely given to cameras, though a documentary broadcast a few years ago (embedded below) offers a good insight into working at Windsor Castle.
As ‘Head Housekeeper’ you’d be working in the Master of The Household’s office, which is headed by Air Marshal Sir David Walker as ‘Master of the Household’.
The Master of the Household’s office is divided into 5 branches. ‘F branch’ which is responsible for food and catering; ‘H branch’, responsible for housekeeping (where the Head Housekeeper would lead the branch); ‘G’ branch, responsible for ceremonial occasions; ‘C branch’, which deals with craft, such as conservation of dated furniture in the Royal Household and Central Branch which is responsible for overseeing all the other branches and coordinating The Queen and her guests’ programmes.
A Head Housekeeper would be responsible for overseeing the upkeep of Windsor Castle’s 1,000 rooms.
The Queen herself obviously won’t be interviewing, though rest assured the Master of the Household Department’s executives will be looking for the best candidate.
Housekeeping in the Royal Household ranges from general tidying as one might expect in any residence, to female housekeeping assistants occasionally personally tending to female guests when they stay.