Countryside ranger

Countryside rangers look after green spaces, woodlands and animal habitats that allow entry to the public.

Annual Salary

£16,000 to £30,000

Average UK salary in 2018 was £29,588 (source Office for Statistics)

Working hours

37 hours

Future employment

There will be 4% more Countryside ranger jobs in 2024.
In your local area

What's it all about?

You could work for local authorities, National Park authorities, the Forestry Commission or charities like the National Trust, the RSPB and local wildlife trusts.

You'll usually:

  • plan and create habitats to protect plants, animals and birds
  • plant trees and manage ponds
  • lead guided walks, talks and educational visits
  • work with volunteers and encourage community involvement in projects
  • balance the needs of conservation and visitor management
  • manage exhibitions and resource centres and talk to the public
  • maintain machinery like chainsaws and mowers
  • order materials, keep records and write reports

You'll usually need a qualification in countryside or conservation management and work experience. You could get experience by volunteering with organisations like National Parks or conservation charities.

You’ll need to meet the physical demands of the job and may have to pass a medical.

A first aid qualification may help when applying for jobs.

You could get into this job through an apprenticeship. You could also work your way up from assistant or seasonal ranger.

You may need a criminal records check through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

£16,000 to £30,000

Starter salary: £16,000

Experienced salary: £24,000

These figures are a guide.

37 hours

You'll usually work around 37 hours a week, which may include evenings and weekends. You may work more weekends during busy tourist times.

You'll spend some time inside, but there’ll be lots of active outdoor work and walking in all weathers. You’ll need to wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the job you’re doing, like using a chainsaw or dealing with vermin or moulds.

You may spend periods working alone.

You’re likely to have to lift and move heavy objects.

You’ll usually need a full driving licence and may need to drive an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) or pull a trailer.

You could join a professional body like the Countryside Management Association, which may improve your career prospects.

With experience, you could become a senior, district or head ranger or warden. You could also become a countryside officer.

Another option is to move into more specialised work like forestry or coastal area management, or wildlife conservation.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

You'll need:

  • practical ability in using tools and equipment
  • excellent communication skills
  • leadership skills
My top 5 skills from the skills bank
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