Head Gardener

Large private Estate on the Wiltshire/Somerset border are seeking a fully qualified and experienced Head Gardener to help lead the next stage in the transformation and future evolution of this historically important Estate.  

The Head Gardener must provide leadership and management to the Grounds and Garden team, and will have a shared responsibility for the development, maintenance and safety of the estate whilst developing existing ground staff’s skills and experience over time.  They must demonstrate sound technical knowledge of industry standards with special emphasis on all health and safety legislation provisions whilst inspiring the grounds team to achieve outstanding results.  An innovative and enthusiastic approach is essential towards the long term planning of upkeep and renovation of all grounds and resources.   

The successful applicant will be required to fit well within a small team, ensuring that the gardens, lawns and designed landscape are presented and maintained to the highest standards. The applicant will have a recognised qualification supported by significant post-qualification experience.  

You will have excellent communication skills and a practical ability with plenty of energy and a willingness to become involved in a hands-on role with the current team.  

The position would suit someone with an interest and understanding of this historically important garden and a willingness to make a long-term commitment to developing its future.  Given the latitude of the garden, a flexible attitude to working hours is essential.  

While the gardens contain many mature plant specimens, there is also considerable scope for additions to the design and planting plan which will evolve in conjunction with the Estate Manager.   

You will have the exciting challenge and opportunity of leading these and other garden design and forestry projects.  

Key Duties
• Understanding and contributing to the master plan and historical importance of the gardens
• Designing new and rejuvenating existing elements of the garden and maintaining accurate garden plans and records
• Organising & managing the operations of the gardens and its team and equipment
• Liaising with the Estate Manager over planning, budgets and future developments
• Ensuring Health and Safety and COSHH regulations are adhered to
• Exceptional Lawn care, weed management and annual maintenance
• Soil management and relevant soil association practices
• Understanding of chemical free/fully organic maintenance  

Skills Required
• Groundsman care & Woodland management
• Relevant horticulture qualifications (NCH, HND, OND, City & Guilds etc in Horticulture, RHS Level 3 or similar standard
• Excellent horticultural knowledge
• Technical machinery and servicing knowledge
• Risk/Coshh/Safety awareness
• Excellent proven people management skills
• Methodical planning
• Garden design and planning
• Confident communication skills, with the ability to interact with individuals from a range of backgrounds.
• Keen eye for detail.
• Proactive and flexible approach to work.
• Willing to take responsibility and ownership for tasks.
• Sense of discretion, appreciating the confidentiality of the work.  

Other Desirable Qualifications
• PA1 and PA6a
• Chainsaw maintenance
• Crosscut Certificates
• First Aid
• Full clean driving license

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