Senior Conservation Officer

  • Job Reference: MAY20229393
  • Date Posted: 7 June 2022
  • Recruiter: RSPB
  • Website:
  • Location: Dearne Valley - Old Moor
  • Remote Working: Some remote working possible
  • Salary: £33,600 to £37,275
  • Bonus/Benefits: Pension, Life Assurance, 26 days Annual Leave
  • Sector: Community & Sport, Consulting & Corporate Strategy, Real Estate & Property, Charity
  • Job Type: Permanent, Full Time

Job Description

We are looking for a knowledgeable, dynamic and passionate individual to lead the RSPB’s off-reserve conservation work across the Yorkshire and Humber area. With the range of important habitats and species across the area, this is an exciting and varied role that presents a fantastic opportunity to make a real difference for nature!

To make a success of this opportunity, you will be a capable leader with the ability to work well with a broad range of contacts, both within the RSPB and beyond. You will be able to apply your strong ecological knowledge in a pragmatic and focused way, to lead our small conservation team to deliver the best possible outcomes for our priority habitats and species.

What's the role about?

This is an exciting opportunity to play a key role in shaping the direction of conservation across the Yorkshire and Humber area. The successful candidate will be responsible for driving and overseeing the work of the RSPB’s conservation team within Yorkshire and the Humber. 

The role will lead, manage and develop the conservation team, helping to deliver an ambitious work programme focused on our Humber Estuary Priority Landscape and relevant priority species and habitats most notably lowland wetlands, estuaries and coastal/marine. This will be achieved by deploying the appropriate conservation tools to ensure we achieve our conservation objectives. This may include site safeguard casework, species recovery work, land management advice, conservation projects and engagement in land use and marine policy.

The Senior Conservation Officer has a key role in instigating and managing programmes and projects, in association with RSPB colleagues. This includes those led by the RSPB and RSPB’s delivery in wider partnerships.  The successful candidate will have an important external role, building positive relationships with key partners and stakeholders so that RSPB’s policies and messages are understood and furthered within relevant partnerships and fora.

As conservation leader within the area team, the Senior Conservation Officer will contribute expertise to the operational area leadership structure, helping to direct our focus, build our objectives and lead our conservation project development and delivery.  They will also be expected to contribute operational experience to RSPB’s policy and advocacy work and to the delivery of RSPB funding and communications objectives, particularly through communicating our conservation messages.

We are looking for someone capable of leading our conservation work to deliver the greatest impact for nature. This will require the ability to understand the range of conservation tools, prioritise these to ensure we are doing the most important things in the right places in the best way possible, getting the best out of the people they work with. Essential qualities will therefore be leadership, the ability to prioritise, time management, communications skills and energy, all focused on delivering the best for nature. We are particularly interested to hear from candidates with experience in working with and engaging communities in nature conservation.

Essential skills, knowledge and experience:

  • Sufficient understanding of landscape scale conservation; land use and management; planning systems and policy and legislation relevant to Yorkshire & the Humber to advise staff on appropriate responses and interventions.
  • Knowledge of the wildlife and habitats of the area of this role.
  • Sufficient knowledge of a range of delivery mechanisms for conservation work relevant to the operational area to advise staff on appropriate responses and interventions.
  • Ability to form effective teams (both internal and partnership) and work effectively as a team player.
  • 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.
  • Ability to support and develop staff using a variety of management techniques.
  • 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.
  • 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 developing productive partnerships.
  • Experience of negotiating with and influencing the public or private sector, to deliver biodiversity benefits, through both regulatory and voluntary means.

Desirable skills, knowledge and experience:

  • Experience of raising funds from external sources for projects.
  • Experience of public engagement work.
  • Effective project management skills.
  • Experience of major site conservation casework eg to public inquiry stage.
  • Specialist conservation knowledge in relevant areas, such as marine, coastal, wetland, upland or farmland conservation.

This is a Permanent Full-Time role for 37.5 hours per week.

Closing date: 23:59, Friday 1st July 2022

We are looking to conduct interviews for this position from 13th July 2022.


If you would like to find out more, please click the apply button. You will be directed to our website to complete your application for this position.

Location: Dearne Valley - Old Moor

Benefits: Pension, Life Assurance, 26 days Annual Leave

The RSPB is an equal opportunities employer. We are committed to making our organisation diverse and inclusive, and as such are keen to encourage applications from people from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds, as well as those with disabilities. This role is also covered by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.