Posted 8 November by National Trust

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.

This role is primarily based at Stoneywell however you will also cover Calke Abbey too.

What it's like to work here

Stoneywell is a rare survivor of one man’s vision to build an arts and crafts cottage within the heart of the Charnwood Forest. The wild landscape within which it was built remains, but also sits delicately within more formal gardens developed over the 55 years by the Gimson family who were keen gardeners. A unique landscape results, wilderness that conjures up childhood excitement of Swallows and Amazons proportions alongside areas that have been tamed and carefully planted. With swathes of daffodils and bluebells, wild flower meadows, a super collection of rhododendrons, heathland and woodland; it really is a garden for all seasons. Stoneywell is unique and as a small pre-bookable property we pride ourselves in the warmth of the welcome and exceptional experience we give to our visitors.

Calke Abbey, known as the un-stately home, is a unique visitor experience that gives a vivid portrayal of a declining country house, with the property’s interiors preserved but not restored, and the gardens displaying high horticulture in a decaying frame. It is famous for its beautiful open spaces, walled kitchen and flower gardens and conservation work. It is a high performing, busy property and visitors tell us they love coming to the beautiful gardens where they marvel at the handiwork of the amazing garden team.

What you'll be doing

At Stoneywell you will be managing the 4-acre garden, 11-acre woodland and associated outdoor spaces. With a kitchen garden, small orchard, tennis court lawn, formal beds and heathland, the horticultural tasks carried out will be varied. You will be supported by a team of garden volunteers and a woodland group. There are duty management responsibilities within this role providing a great opportunity to develop your skills set and get a good overview of whole property operations.

At Calke you'll be a key member of a busy team of staff and volunteers, working in the lovely Walled Gardens and Pleasure Grounds. This role is also varied, you could be raising produce in the vegetable beds, taking care of the Victorian Flower Garden or working in the Georgian Orangery and glasshouses.

For both roles you will need to be an engaging ambassador for us and be able to inspire the public with each unique spirit of place and special atmosphere. You’ll be expected to interact with the public, answering their many questions, or help with gardening workshops, tours and setting up for events when needed. A flexible approach to a varied working pattern will be required and the rota includes weekend and bank holiday working.

Who we're looking for

To be successful in this role you should be able to demonstrate the below:

  • Trained as a professional gardener/horticulturalist with a good level of practical experience.
  • RHS Level 2 or equivalent.
  • Have proven practical gardening/horticulture experience, as well as a strong knowledge of plants
  • Confidence to participate in garden activities and events
  • Competence with machinery/equipment use and maintenance; including tractors, chainsaws, and pedestrian mowers with accreditation as required for Health and Safety compliance.
The package


Benefits include flexible working whenever possible plus free parking at most locations. You’ll be entitled to discounts in high street stores and cinemas, National Trust shops and NT cafes, and have free entry to NT properties for you, a guest and your children (under 18).

Your health and wellbeing is important to us and is supported through generous annual leave and the option to buy additional days (minimum contract length applies), a cycle to work scheme, subsidised health cash plan, a loan towards rental deposits and confidential access to a free support service 24 hours a day should you need it.

Your future financial health is helped by an employer matched - up to 10% of basic salary - contributory pension scheme and you can further your career with training and development tailored to you.

All of this and the opportunity to give something back to your community with up to 5 days of paid volunteering per year!

Reference: 39330278

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