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Forestry Commission - National - Senior Surveyor, Woodland Creation

Job Description:

Reference number 176920

Salary £42,462 - £46,029

Grade Senior Executive Officer, Pay Band 3

Contract type Fixed Term

Length of employment 3 years

Business area FC - Forestry England - Woodland Creation, Estates and Legal

Type of role Estates, Property

Working pattern Flexible working, Full-time


Bristol based, with the opportunity for blended working from home or local Forestry Commission office. Limited travel across England will be required with overnight stays on occasion.

About the job


We have never needed trees and forests more. They can help tackle the climate emergency and provide a much-needed sanctuary for people and wildlife. The Government of the United Kingdom has recognised this and has committed to creating 30,000 hectares of woodland a year across the UK by the end of this Parliament. This acceleration in woodland creation rates in England will help meet the net-zero by 2050 ambition and is supported by the £640m Nature for Climate Fund (NCF) announced in the March 2020 budget.

The Department for the Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Forestry Commission have set up a joint NCF tree programme for England to deliver these ambitions. If you are passionate about the role of forestry in creating a better future for England and want to play a key part in delivering this, we want to hear from you.

Forestry England is part of The Forestry Commission and for over 100 years, we have been growing, shaping and caring for over 1,500 of our nation’s forests for the benefit and enjoyment of all, for this generation and the next. We care for more land and trees than any other organisation in England, we shape landscapes for people, wildlife and timber, we’ve built over 1,800 miles of walking, running and cycling trails and we provide the largest source of sustainably grown timber in England. We want to do more and as part of the NCF tree programme we will be expanding the nations forests by creating new woodland on leasehold sites.

The Senior Surveyor is a position within the National Estates- Woodland Creation- team. You will negotiate these new leases with landowners, liaising with our legal representatives and the Forestry England Woodland creation team. We need you to represent Forestry England at a senior level and to build productive relationships with a range of stakeholders.

Job description

As a senior representative of the National Estates team you will be responsible for the acquisition of land by lease for woodland creation. You will be a Chartered Surveyor (Rural/Commercial/General Practice) with a track record of delivering commercial outcomes and the ability to draft and manage complex agreements. You will have business and financial acumen, with experience of managing innovative transactions and structures together with an understanding of tax in the rural economy.

Key Work Areas include:

• Expanding the nations forests by negotiating leases with private, institutional and ‘third sector’ landowners.

• Carrying out legal due diligence on sites to recommend their inclusion in the programme.

• Identifying additional opportunities and risks on new sites.

• You will be a visible and credible representing the NCF Tree Programme at both regional and National levels.

• You will draft, promoting and presenting woodland creation opportunities.


Work against a demanding timetable to:

• Agree the best commercial terms for leases on woodland creation sites within budgetary constraints;

• Work with Forestry England legal services providers to draft leases and other contractual agreements to secure sites.

• Implement financial controls and reporting as required by the Project;

• Work closely with national and regional colleagues to promote commercial opportunities arising from these through our woodland creation project.

Person Specification

Essential Professional and Technical experience:

• A Chartered Surveyor (Rural/Commercial/General Practice)

• Demonstrable experience of delivery of commercial outcomes and the ability to manage complex commercial agreements

• Experience of high-level drafting to instruct a range of commercial situations.

• Experience within the forestry or environmental sector.

Desirable Professional and Technical experience

• Business/financial acumen, with experience of managing innovative transactions and structures together with an understanding of tax in the rural economy.

• IT competency particularly use of Microsoft applications.

• Experience of woodland creation activities.


Applicants must have current membership of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.


We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Delivering at Pace
  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Managing a Quality Service


This post offers an opportunity for blended working. As part of the National Estate's team your reporting point will by National Office, Bristol, however you may request to work from local Forestry Commission offices or your home.

Other Benefits include:

• Learning and development tailored to your role
• An environment with flexible working options
• A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity
• A Civil Service pension
• Continual Professional Development: Support for individual learning plans and sponsored membership of professional bodies.
• 25 days annual leave on entry, increasing to 30 days after 5 years’ service in addition to 10.5 Public, privilege and additional holidays.

Things you need to know


Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.

People working with government assets must complete basic personnel security standard checks.

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles, and will assess your Behaviours and Experience.

As part of the application process you will be asked to complete a CV and personal statement of suitability. Further details around what this will entail are listed on the application form.

Your statement of suitability should be no more than 250 words and should explain how you consider your personal skills, qualities and experience provide evidence of your suitability for the role, with particular reference to the essential criteria in the person specification.

Should a large number of applications be received, an initial sift may be conducted using the personal statement. Candidates who pass the initial sift may be progressed to a full sift, or progressed straight to assessment/interview.

Interviews will be conducted online with the use of Microsoft Teams or equivalent. Candidates will require access to a computer and internet at interview stage.

We anticipate interviewing candidates successful at sift on 4th February although dates are subject to change.

Further Information

The duties of this post require the applicant to have a full current driving licence that enables them to drive in the UK. However, the Forestry Commission is willing to consider any proposals put forward by applicants that would allow them to do the job by any other means.

This is a Temporary Appointment for 3 years with the possibility of extension or permanency but no guarantee.

A reserve list may be held for a period of 6 months from which further appointments can be made.

Any move to Forestry Commission England from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. You may however be eligible for other government schemes, including Tax Free Childcare. Determine your eligibility at here

If successful and transferring from another Government Department a criminal record check may be carried out.

In order to process applications without delay, we will be sending a Criminal Record Check to Disclosure and Barring Service on your behalf. However, we recognise in exceptional circumstances some candidates will want to send their completed forms direct. If you will be doing this, please advise Government Recruitment Service of your intention by emailing stating the job reference number in the subject heading.

New entrants are expected to join on the minimum of the pay band.

If you are experiencing accessibility problems with any attachments on this advert, please contact the email address in the 'Contact point for applicants' section.

This role is full time only. Applicants who wish to work an alternative pattern are welcome to apply however your preferred working pattern may not be available and you should discuss this with the vacancy holder before applying.

Reasonable Adjustment

If a person with disabilities is put at a substantial disadvantage compared to a non-disabled person, we have a duty to make reasonable changes to our processes.

If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should:

Contact Government Recruitment Service via as soon as possible before the closing date to discuss your needs.

Complete the “Assistance required” section in the “Additional requirements” page of your application form to tell us what changes or help you might need further on in the recruitment process. For instance, you may need wheelchair access at interview, or if you’re deaf, a Language Service Professional.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Nationality requirements

This job is broadly open to the following groups:

  • UK nationals
  • nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
  • nationals of the Republic of Ireland
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals working in the Civil Service
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals who have built up the right to work in the Civil Service
  • certain family members of the relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals

Further information on nationality requirements

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles.

The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Apply and further information

Once this job has closed, the job advert will no longer be available. You may want to save a copy for your records.

Contact point for applicants

Job contact : David Chalmers email
Recruitment team:

Further information

Our recruitment process is underpinned by the principle of appointment on the basis of fair and open competition and appointment on merit, as outlined in the Civil Service Commissioners’ Recruitment Principles.If you feel your application has not been treated in accordance with these principles and you wish to make a complaint, you should in the first instance contact FCE by email: If you are not satisfied with the response you receive, you can contact the Civil Service Commission, which regulates all Civil Service recruitment.

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