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Senior Gardener

Employer
National Trust
Location
Woolbeding Gardens, Brambling Lane, Midhurst, West Sussex, GU29 9RR
Salary
circa £27,000 per annum
Closing date
3 Dec 2023

Job Details

Summary        
If you want a career in Gardening, we can offer you some of the most beautiful outdoor spaces in the UK to work in as well as one of the largest plant collections in Europe. 

The Garden team at Woolbeding Gardens are looking to recruit a Senior Gardener with outstanding leadership skills to join the team, this is an exciting role to develop your skills and help develop an outstanding Contemporary garden.

Accommodation is provided to the postholder for the proper or better performance of their duties in accordance with Trust criteria and HMRC rules.

Interviews will be held on the 7th and 8th of December. 

The salary for this role is circa £27,000 per annum, dependant on experience. 

What it's like to work here        
Working in The Long Walk is best described by our former Senior Gardener:

I am responsible for the Long Walk, a contemporary interpretation of an 18th century landscape garden. This is the part of Woolbeding where time slows. After the showy exuberance of the formal gardens and the wild self-seeding of the Silk Route garden, visitors arrive at this peaceful green space with ruined Abbey, lake, waterfall and woodland. It is deeply romantic and I have been smitten from the first moment I saw it. 

Gardening here is about framing views, letting in light and finding the right balance between maintained and natural. It’s also about hard work. Autumn/Winter are our most challenging seasons, cutting back perennials, pruning, clearing weeds (including in the lake), clearing leaves, mulching, replanting and developing new ideas. If you like this kind of work (and I do), it is immensely satisfying. 

Spring is the most beautiful season, with bulbs galore, delicate unfurling croziers from the ferns and fresh green foliage on the trees. Summer brings dappled shade and visitors who are escaping the heat. Woolbeding is a very special place and I believe that is down to the way we garden.

Vivian - Former Senior Gardener

What you'll be doing        
You’ll love working outdoors and understand that our gardens and grounds are as significant as our mansion houses, collections and our historical places. Our visitors tell us how much they enjoy the peace and tranquillity of our well-kept outdoor spaces, which makes your role vital in making sure our visitors have an amazing experience.

We don’t just need you to manage our beautiful gardens, although this is an important part of the role; we’d like you to help manage the team too. As the Senior Gardener in our team, we’d like you to lead by example, with exceptional gardening skills, but you’ll also understand how to manage the workload for this team, and deliver exceptional training to new staff and volunteers. You will also share your knowledge and love for Woolbeding with visitors through occasional talks and garden tours.

Please also read the full role profile attached to this advert.

Who we're looking for        
To be successful in this role you should be able to demonstrate the following: 

  • Significant practical experience in horticulture supported by relevant qualifications 
  • Have supervisory experience from a similar role 
  • Excellent knowledge of plants 
  • Competent with the use and maintenance of garden machinery including chainsaws, tractors, hedge trimmers, pedestrian and ride on mowers 
  • Knowledge of relevant health and safety legislation and practice 
  • Holder of full UK drivers licence 

Company

There's no other organisation like the National Trust. No other organisation that brings such an amazing variety of places and spaces to life.

We are a charity founded in 1895 by Octavia Hill, Sir Robert Hunter and Canon Hardwicke Rawnsley, three people who saw the importance of our nation’s heritage and open spaces, and wanted to protect them for everyone to enjoy. More than a century after we were founded, our values are still at the heart of everything we do. And we do a lot more than you might think. 

We welcome some 22.5 million visitors, from all ages and backgrounds, every year. We care for historic houses, gardens, mills, forests, castles, miles of coastline, islands, holiday cottages, pubs and inns, whole villages and even a goldmine. We also run a huge retail chain, a multi-million pound food and beverage business and much, much more. And we do all of this so that everyone can enjoy and make the most of the green spaces and beautiful places that England, Wales and Northern Ireland has to offer. 

The National Trust is described by its employee gardeners as “dynamic, supportive, inquisitive and fun”, where its beautiful places “lift your spirits naturally” and “somewhere you can expand new skills”. The organisation is currently recruiting for a number of gardening roles. 

Read more in our latest articles:

What makes the National Trust a special place to work?

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