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Senior Gardener

University of Reading - Maintenance & Business Services

Location: Reading
Salary: £19,730 to £24,029 per annum
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Permanent
Placed On: 28th January 2019
Closes: 29th March 2019
Job Ref: SRF27838

We are seeking a working Senior Gardener with great plant knowledge to maintain the Harris Garden at the University’s Whiteknights campus.This former botanic garden covers approximately 5 hectares and has many rare and unusual plants. This is a great opportunity for a practical individual to work within a significant plant collection.The gardens primary function is now recreation and conservation and is heavily used throughout the year by University staff and the wider community, including opening for a number of charity days.

The post will ensure the day to day maintenance of the garden ensuring high maintenance standards with minimal supervision. The post is the only staff resource allocated to the garden so we rely on the Friends of the Harris Garden and other volunteers for its continuing upkeep and development. An essential part of this role is to work with, supervise and guide the volunteers ensuring this valuable resource is maintained.

The successful candidate will have broad experience and knowledge of grounds maintenance and horticultural techniques and be technically competent in the safe use of associated equipment, pesticide application and machinery. Experience of customer service, health and safety and the ability to guide and communicate with a wide range of volunteers, up to 20 people at times, is essential. Experience of working in a similar environment or organisation would be advantageous.

When completing the application you should match you qualifications, training, skills and experience to the job description giving full details and filling in all sections.

You will have:

  • A horticultural qualification.
  • Demonstrable plant knowledge.
  • Experience of supervising grounds maintenance staff.
  • The ability to carry out a wide range of practical grounds maintenance techniques including manual handling.
  • The ability to use and demonstrate competence in the use of grounds maintenance machinery.
  • A working knowledge of health & safety.
  • A valid UK driving Licence is needed as the sucessful candidate will be driving between campuses.

Ideally you will have:

  • Experience of working within a botanic garden or plant collection.
  • Experience of working with and supervising volunteers

Interviews to be held on 5th March 2019

Informal contact details
Contact role: Head of Grounds Maintenance
Contact name: Rupert Taylor
Contact phone: 0784 3344513 (Office hours only and no voice mail please)
Contact email:

Alternative informal contact details
Contact role: 
Deputy Head of Grounds Maintenance
Contact name: Duncan Zacks
Contact phone: 0784 3344509 (Office hours only and no voice mail please)
Contact email:

The University is committed to having a diverse and inclusive workforce, is a Stonewall Diversity and Global Diversity Champion, and supports the principles of the Race Equality Charter and Athena SWAN. Applications for job-share, part-time and flexible working arrangements are welcomed and will be considered in line with business needs.

Applications from job seekers who require sponsorship to work in the UK are welcome and will be considered alongside all other applications. However, non-EEA candidates who do not already have permission to work in the UK should note that this role is not recognised as a graduate level job by UK Visas and Immigration and the Tier 2 sponsorship route is not available for non-graduate level occupations. There is further information about this on the UK Visas and Immigration Website.

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