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Part-Time Conservation Officer - Sussex, Surrey, East Hampshire and London

Reference: MAR20218078
Expiry date: 23:59, 28 April 2021
Location: RSPB England - Brighton
Salary: £27,574.00 - £30,590.00 Pro Rata
Benefits: Pension, Life Assurance, 26 days Annual Leave

We have an exciting opportunity for an enthusiastic and self-motivated Conservation Officer, with relevant experience, to join the Sussex, Surrey, London and east Hampshire team. The successful applicant will be responsible for helping to deliver the RSPB’s ambitious conservation goals and objectives in this area. The priority landscapes of the Thames Basin and Wealden Heaths and the Solent Coast to Arun Valley will be a focus for our conservation delivery.

What is the role about?

Conservation Officers play a key role in protecting our most important sites for habitats and species and seeking opportunities to enhance and better connect these.  This is achieved through planning casework, advocating good conservation practice working with partners, leading projects, empowering people to save nature, and land management and species advisory work.

This role has a vitally important external element, building positive relationships with key partners and stakeholders so that our collective policies and messages are understood and furthered. Significant development and people pressure in the South-East is a threat and an opportunity, therefore, engaging with development and strategies to protection nature and driving people-powered nature recovery will be key. 

The RSPB is committed to increasing equality, inclusivity and diversity. The role is part-time (with some flexibility in terms of number of hours and days worked) and will be initially home-based, but may in future involve working from a relevant RSPB Office and travel to meetings.

Key activities will include:

  1. Undertaking and contributing to the delivery of species and habitat specific work programmes linked to the RSPBs Saving Nature Strategy
  2. Developing and leading on elements of the RSPB’s landscape scale conservation programme delivery in the Thames Basin and Wealden Heaths and Solent Coast to Arun Valley.
  3. Preparing and submitting RSPB responses to key planning casework and other consent/licensing applications, as well as relevant policy and strategy consultations, working closely with RSPB England colleagues to contribute to the Site Conservation outcomes of the Saving Nature Strategy.
  4. Involvement in individual projects, working collaboratively with RSPB colleagues, particularly reserve staff, as appropriate. This includes RSPB projects and RSPB’s delivery in wider partnership projects.
  5. Building positive relationships with landowners / managers and with key partners and other stakeholders so that our collective policies and messages are understood and habitat and species restoration furthered across the area but with a focus on our priority landscapes.
  6. Identifying opportunities and working collaboratively to steer new policy implementation (e.g. Local Nature Recovery Strategies, Biodiversity Net Gain) to deliver ambitious nature recovery.

Essential skills, knowledge and experience:

  • Degree level qualification in a relevant subject or ability to show equivalent work experience
  • Sufficient understanding of the species and habitats; landscape scale conservation; land use and management; planning systems and relevant policy and legislation of the region or country in which this role is based to enable recommendation to senior staff of appropriate responses and interventions
  • Sufficient knowledge of a range of delivery mechanisms for conservation work relevant to the operational area to enable recommendation to senior staff of appropriate responses and interventions.
  • Ability to work effectively as a team player both internally and in external partnerships.
  • Excellent communication skills (verbal, written and presentational) – including an ability to speak confidently and cogently in public to a variety of audiences.
  • Confident advocating a position to landowners and managers, local politicians, members and volunteers who have different views e.g. professional, persuasive, engaging and confident
  • Ability to rapidly analyse significant quantities of information, prioritise and balance a diverse workload often to tight deadlines
  • Competent user of core MS Office programmes
  • Ability to incorporate a people-based approach to conservation in the area. Including positive community engagement for projects and empowering people to protect and restore nature
  • Experience of working to survey, protect and/or manage important sites, species or habitats
  • Experience of managing staff or volunteers and setting clear work priorities
  • Experience of productive partnerships

Desirable skills, knowledge and experience:

  • Experience of negotiating with the public or private sector, to deliver biodiversity benefits, through both regulatory and voluntary means, especially planning casework
  • Understanding of water quality, coastal processes and water management

The closing date for this vacancy is 28th April 2021, however, as we are actively recruiting for this position we reserve the right to close the vacancy once sufficient applications have been received.

Should you have any queries relating to this vacancy please contact Heather Richards, Senior Conservation Officer: heather.richards@rspb.org.uk

Good luck!