Royal Armouries appoints new interim CEO

Geraldine Kendall, 13.09.2012
Finance director takes the helm after suspension of director general
The Royal Armouries in Leeds has appointed its finance director, Chris Walker, as interim chief executive and accounting officer - the second such change to the institution’s leadership this year.

Walker, who has previously worked at UK Sport, the National Theatre and Arts Council England, replaces outgoing interim CEO Andrew Scott.

Scott had held the post since May after the museum’s director general Jonathon Riley was temporarily suspended on full pay over an auditing matter.

Armouries chairman Wes Paul said: “I would like to take this opportunity to thank Andrew Scott for his hard work and commitment over the past three months and to offer every good wish for the future.

"I am also grateful to Chris for agreeing to take up his new post and I look forward to developing our working relationship.”

The nature of the auditing issue over which Riley was suspended remains confidential.

In a statement last month, the museum said: “Jonathon Riley was placed under temporary suspension, pending the outcome of a review of issues raised by our auditors.

“The Royal Armouries is unable to make any further comment regarding these issues at this time.”

Recent accounts from the Royal Armouries do not disclose any problems and were passed by the government's auditor general in 2011.

The investigation follows several years of upheaval at the Royal Armouries. In April 2011 the museum made 17 redundancies and dismantled its education department after receiving a 15% grant-in-aid cut – visitor numbers subsequently fell 38% between April and June that year. 

In 2008, then-director general Paul Evans resigned after an investigation into “potential irregularities” at the museum.

Riley, a senior army general who has served in Afghanistan and the Balkans, was appointed director general and master of arms in 2009.


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