Head Gardener

LL57 4HN, Bangor
£28000 depending on experience
11 Mar 2019
24 Mar 2019
Full Time
Contract Type

Play your part in transforming Penrhyn as our new Head Gardener.

We’re looking for a talented head gardener with the tenacity, skills and understanding to lead and manage exceptional foundational presentation and conservation standards within this beautiful Grade II listed historic garden. You will lead ambitious development plans to restore the spirit of this fantastical nineteenth century garden, including the stunning Walter Speed designed Walled Garden centrepiece.

You’ll join a highly motivated and professional National Trust property team who share a vision of creating a vibrant and relevant living cultural resource for a local, national and international twenty first century audience. You will drive annual programmes of engagement and interpretation, sharing our stories, glorious havens of horticulture and untold histories with growing visitor numbers.

It’ll be a challenging role that will push and stretch you, but, for the right person, it’s an amazing opportunity to show what you can do and to play a central role in an exciting period of transformation at the property.

Interviews will take place, at Penrhyn Castle, on Thursday 4 April 2019

Penrhyn Castle is a fun, vibrant and ambitious property in the middle of transforming the way we tell and present ourselves - a captivating story of Victorian grandeur, innovation and idyllic location counterbalanced by a history embroiled in colonialism, local industrial unrest, power and wealth.

It’s beautiful Grade II listed garden is a mix of formal planted gardens, parkland and woodland with far reaching views of Snowdonia and the North Wales Coast and sits in sharp contrast to the looming silhouette of this fantasy castle; an important and fascinating landscape in its own right.

Your day to day work will vary through the year but will include the management of a team of garden staff and volunteers, leading every day excellence though driving immaculate presentation and engagement in the gardens and acting as an ambassador for the property as a whole.

You’ll need a high level of financial acumen, being responsible for the department’s operational and maintenance budget and you’ll be instrumental in planning future development within the gardens, leading the planning of ambitious restoration projects and ensuring any work is delivered on time and within budget and meet the Trust’s exacting conservation and quality requirements.

Working with your head of department colleagues and with the support of National Trust specialists, you will responsible for the operational delivery of the property’s business plan. Alongside the General Manager, you will lead a one team culture which is notable for creativity, embracing development and continual experimentation and sharing learnings through the property, Wales, the Trust and beyond.

You’ll work as part of a busy visitor operation at the castle, welcoming around 125,000 visitors every year. The need to integrate, communicate and work effectively with the other departments at Penrhyn is crucial.

A positive attitude towards the Welsh language and culture and commitment to learning minimum courtesy standard of Welsh is essential, if you are not a fluent Welsh speaker. (Basic training provided)

  • You’ll be an experienced gardener, from a similar historic garden setting, with strong people skills and a deep understanding of plants and horticulture. You’ll need to be able to demonstrate:
  • Exceptional horticultural skills and plant knowledge, to ensure the garden is maintained to the highest horticultural and presentational standards. You will have significant practical experience working in an historic garden environment and this will be supported by appropriate qualifications.
  • Excellent leadership and communication skills including the ability to manage and motivate teams and build positive relationships with colleagues, stakeholders and suppliers. Line management experience.
  • The ability to effectively consult, make decisions and drive work forward to agreed budgets and timescales in a multi-disciplined environment
  • A positive attitude to participatory practise and willingness to wor​-k collaboratively with a diverse group of people including colleagues, stakeholders, local community and suppliers
  • A track record of effective financial management including cost planning, setting budgets, tracking expenditure and financial reporting
  • Attention to detail and a passion for quality

A deep understanding of conservation philosophy and practices and a love for the Trust’s special places

Please see attached role profile and information brochure for more information about the role

The vacancy closes on Sunday 24 March 2019. Applicants selected for interview will be informed by Wednesday 26 March 2019.

  • Interviews will take place, at Penrhyn Castle, on Thursday 4 April 2019