Logo: South Somerset District Council

South Somerset District Council

Assistant Countryside Ranger

Take the next step in your career

We have an exciting opportunity for an Assistant Countryside Ranger to join the team at Ham Hill on a 3 year fixed term contract to work on an exciting National Lottery Heritage Fund project. Apply now and become a valued member of the Countryside team, helping South Somerset to be a place where businesses flourish, communities are safe, vibrant and healthy and residents enjoy good housing and cultural, leisure and sporting activities.

Job Title: Assistant Countryside Ranger (Fixed term for 3 years)
Salary: CCT12, £24,496 – £27,852
Hours: 37 per week, some evening & weekend work may be required

From 1st April 2023 the County and District councils in Somerset will be replaced by a new single unitary authority – Somerset Council. It’s an exciting time to join us as we work together to deliver the new council for Somerset. Should you join us from the 1st April 2023, your terms and conditions will be from the new Somerset Council.

What you can expect from us…

We are proud to offer an environment that is supportive and rewarding, working as part of a team who are passionate about the work they do to improve the lives of people in Somerset.

We offer great training and development opportunities, with supportive management. As well as this, we have some fantastic employee benefits available:

  • We promote a healthy work-life balance and offer flexible working arrangements wherever possible, including agile working.
  • Generous annual leave allowance, with the opportunity to purchase additional leave.
  • Staff discounts in gyms.
  • Employee Assistance for the times you may need some support and a variety of employee wellbeing services.
  • Auto enrolment onto our generous Pension Scheme and optional pension enhancement through our Additional Voluntary Contribution scheme.
  • A Flexible Benefits Scheme via salary sacrifice to obtain a cycle for work and health screenings.
  • My Staff Shop offering discounts in shops, online shopping, restaurants, cinema tickets, insurance benefits and more.

What we’re looking for…

  • Someone with a passion for working in the countryside and conservation sector
  • Strong practical skills
  • Ability to work as part of a team
  • Experience of working on a similar site
  • Strong customer communication skills
  • Experience of working with volunteers

Please contact Rachael Whaites, Countryside Manager on 07949 482956 or email should you wish to discuss the role in more detail.

Closing Date: Thursday 23rd March 2023, 5pm

Interview Date: TBC

Job Reference: 2166

To apply for this role, please submit your CV and supporting statement here

In the application, please give details of any conflict of interest that could impact either the recruitment process or your employment with South Somerset.

We promote and value diversity in the workplace and welcome diverse applicants. We are committed to applying our equal opportunities policy at all stages of recruitment and selection. Shortlisting, interviewing and selection will always be carried out without regard to disability, sex or sexual orientation, gender reassignment, marital or civil partnership status, colour, race, nationality, ethnic or national origins, religion or belief, age, or pregnancy or maternity.

We treat personal data collected during the recruitment process in accordance with our data protection policy/policy on processing special category personal data and criminal records. Information about how your data is used and the basis for processing your data is provided in our privacy notice.

South Somerset District Council is committed to the safety of its residents. Due to the nature of the role, the successful candidate will be required to go through an Enhanced DBS check.

Role Description

Role Title: Assistant Countryside Ranger
Location: Ham Hill Country Park
Job Family: Leisure and Recreation
Grade: 4

Main purpose

To assist the Ham Hill ranger in daily maintenance at the busy award-winning Country Park site. Assisting in all practical tasks at the Country Park and delivery of volunteer participation schemes. Developing new opportunities for the public’s enjoyment of the site and ensuring access is safe and inclusive. Assisting with the delivery of public events and wildlife protection and enhancement schemes.

Key tasks

Leadership Responsibilities

  • Assist with leading volunteers and training volunteers in appropriate management techniques where relevant.
  • To assist in training work experience students and apprentice rangers. To supervise casual staff when necessary.

Core Tasks

  • Assist with the maintenance and development at the country park.
  • Assist with the conservation of heritage at the country park
  • Regularly undertaking physically demanding tasks in all weathers.
  • Litter picking and emptying of dog waste bins throughout the site.
  • Reporting and clearing up of fly tips and anti-social behaviour like graffiti.
  • Assist in the delivery of weekly practical conservation volunteer task days.
  • Assist in the delivery of public events like the Ham Hill bonfire and children’s events, online and face to face.
  • Assist in the delivery of educational and community group sessions.
  • Provide a point of contact face to face in the country park for the visiting public and to answer enquiries via telephone, email and letter.
  • Carry out practical habitat management work, in line with the management plan, such as scrub removal, tree planting, hedge laying and woodland management.
  • Carry out site safety works including safety inspections on trees and structures, footpath maintenance and maintenance of all structures.
  • Assist in the promotion of the country park and events through posters and administration of the Ham Hill social media platforms.
  • Deal with ASB or visitor conflicts in a timely and professional manner.
  • Support the countryside team in management of additional countryside sites (Yeovil Country Park, Chard Reservoir, Moldrams Ground LNR, Eastfield LNR and Sampsons Wood) by participating in team days throughout the year, including large events.
  • Help to ensure that the Rangers Centre building and any additional work spaces and buildings are kept in a good state of repair and any faults are reported to the manager. Also to ensure that any outside areas around buildings are kept safe & presentable.
  • Ensure all tools and machinery are kept in full working order and a log of maintenance is kept in line with PUWER.
  • Undertake training as required to ensure that H&S policies are adhered to & for appropriate machinery i.e. chainsaw refresher training, ATV driver training.
  • Assist with wildlife recording at the country park to ensure species lists are kept up to date and to ensure that the appropriate habitat management work is delivered.
  • Keep the country park and all associated buildings and stores secure.
  • Adhere to the guidelines and policies as laid out in the Countryside Staff Handbook and Countryside Policies document.

Personal Specification

Essential (E) / Desirable (D)

Professional and educational qualifications

  • Relevant NVQ or equivalent qualification (E)
  • First aid trained (D)
  • Chainsaw trained (NPTC or LANTRA) (D)
  • Bruschcutter trained (NPTC or LANTRA) (D)


  • Experience of working on a busy countryside site (E)
  • Experience of working with the public and user groups (E)
  • Experience of working with volunteer groups (D)
  • Experience of tool maintenance (D)
  • Experience of delivering sessions to schools or community groups (D)
  • Working on an important heritage site (D)

Key Skills

  • Confident and competent practical skills (E)
  • Ability to stay motivated if problems arise (E)
  • Driving licence (E)
  • Ability to comply with all SSDC Health and Safety policies and procedures (E)
  • Good customer care skills (E)
  • Good verbal communication skills (E)
  • Good written communication skills (E)
  • Ability to problem solve and prioritise work tasks (E)


  • Knowledge of countryside management (E)
  • Knowledge of safe working practices (E)
  • Knowledge Ham Hill Country Park (D)


Closing Date: 23/03/2023  Location: Ham Hill Country Park

Logo: Made Possible with Heritage Fund

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