Nature Friendly Farming Apprentice x2


You will be working as part of Cumbria Connect a new landscape-scale nature restoration
programme funded by the Endangered Landscapes Programme. The newly-established partnership
programme comprises five main partners – RSPB, Lowther Estates, United Utilities, Orton Farm
Cluster and Natural England as well as delivery partners – Woodland Trust, Cumbria Wildlife
Trust, Ernest Cook Trust, Eden Rivers Trust and Lune Rivers Trust.

The objectives and outcomes of Cumbria Connect are to: 

  • Restore nature to 34,000 hectares of upland landscape in the north-eastern corner of Cumbria by
    applying the Lawton Principles and creating a better-connected network of quality wildlife
  • Promote the socio-economic importance of nature restoration to the local community 
  • Enable knowledge transfer to inform further landscape-scale restoration programmes and ensure a
    legacy beyond the programme. 

The programme aims to meet its objectives through direct conservation interventions, to include
woodland management, peatland restoration, sustainable deer management, regenerative farming
practices on core-sites and species translocations; knowledge exchange with a focus on
nature-friendly and regenerative farming; evidence building through science-based research and
monitoring; and community and stakeholder engagement. 

To support this work, we are seeking highly motivated individuals with experience of, or
demonstrable understanding and enthusiasm for, farming and land management to work across three
established sites to deliver restoration through nature conservation, nature friendly farming
and community/visitor engagement.

You will be directly working with teams from our project partners – RSPB, United Utilities,
Lowther Estates, and the Ernest Cook Trust Natural England, and as part of an ambitious Europe
wide suite of ELP funded restoration projects.

The formal learning aspects of this role will be delivered via of this apprenticeship will be
delivered through Myerscough college under their Level 3 Livestock Unit Technician Apprentice
scheme – details via link here: Level 3 Livestock Unit Technician Apprenticeship Standard
Myerscough College. Alongside a formal qualification, at the end of this apprenticeship, you
will have acquired a broad range of skills to support you in a successful career in
farming/land management.

You will feel passionately about nature friendly farming, rural livelihoods and the natural
world and the hope of its recovery. You would be joining a friendly and dynamic community of
partners, committed to creating a better future for nature and the rural economy in Cumbria.

Key aspects of the role:

  • You will support the on the ground delivery nature recovery and farming across three sites,
    RSPB Haweswater (a partnership with United Utilities with two upland farms and associated
    common land), Lowther Estate (as part of the Lowther Farming Partnership) and Low Beckside Farm
    (Ernest Cook Trust).
  • Day to day you will be organising, supervising, and delivering specific land management,
    conservation, and farming tasks. You will manage small scale projects and work collaboratively
    with a range of partners. You will also become qualified and proficient in various practical
    and machinery operational skills, for example, All Terrain Vehicle, Tractor, Brush cutting,
    Livestock handling, First Aid.
  • Building and maintaining strong and productive relationships with local stakeholders and
  • Contributing to wider operational discussions on effective delivery of nature recovery at
    landscape scale.
  • Contributing to shared learning and impact within the suite of ELP restoration projects and
    forward ELP’s wider Programme goals.

Essential skills, knowledge, and experience:

  • You will have knowledge and experience of farming/estate management.
  • Comfortable managing volunteers from a range of backgrounds.
  • Applicants will have attained a minimum of 4 GCSE grades C/4 including both Maths and
    English. Functional Skills Level 2 will be accepted as an alternative to GCSEs. (Exceptional
    entries will be considered for all Apprenticeships at the discretion of Myerscough college
    based on experience, successful interview and outcomes of Initial and Diagnostic assessments
    for English and Maths to establish current levels of ability.
  • You will need to travel to and from the site daily, so a driving licence is preferable.

Desirable skills, knowledge, and experience:

  • Comfortable working alone and as part of a team.
  • Knowledge of servicing and maintaining vehicles, machinery, tools and equipment.
  • Livestock handling.

Additional Information & Working Arrangements

This role will involve lone working and working in remote locations.

This role will require occasional weekend, early morning and evening working so will need
someone who is able to be flexible.

These are Fixed Term roles for 18 months for 37.5 hours per week. The RSPB reserves the right
to extend or make this role permanent without further advertising dependent on business needs
at the end of the contract term.

We are looking to conduct interviews for this position Week commencing 8th January 2024. For
further information please contact: Bill Kenmir, Cumbria Connect Conservation Delivery Manager,
[email protected]

As part of this application process, you will be asked to provide a copy of your CV and
complete an application form including evidence on how you meet the skills, knowledge, and
experience listed above.

The RSPB is an equal opportunities employer. This role is covered by the Rehabilitation of
Offenders Act 1974.

We are committed to developing an inclusive and diverse RSPB, in which everyone
feels supported, valued, and able to be their full selves. To achieve our vision of creating a
world richer in nature, we need more people, and more diverse people, on nature’s

Find out more & apply

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