Change text size:

Choose Style:

Planning Forester

  • Public sector
  • 09/07/2024
  • £29,863.00 - £31,526.00 /yearly
  • Full Time & Permanent

Job Overview

Job Type

Full Time & Permanent


£29,863 - £31,526 yearly

Date Posted:


Expiration date:


Additional Detail

Job ID


Job Description

Kielder Forest Office, Bellingham, Northumberland, NE48 2HP. There will be scope to consider blended working arrangements once the candidate has settled in.

Job summary

Forestry England is the government department responsible for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of the Nations Forests and increasing their value to society and the environment.
Forest planning is central to enabling the full potential of forest land for timber, biodiversity and people in the present day, and to position it for a resilient future. 

In this role you will work within Forestry Englands North District.  To help you settle in quickly youll be provided with training and mentoring and will be working closely with experienced team members.


North England Forest District has a complement of 132 staff who care for 61,000 hectares of forest and 25,000 hectares of open land.  Annual timber production is 550,000 m3 and there is a planting programme in excess of 3 million trees a year. The District has four visitor centres at Grizedale, Whinlatter, Kielder and Hamsterley.  The public forest estate in North England District attracts over one million visits per annum.  The District has 45 SSSIs totalling over 10,000 ha and is a major contributor to local and national biodiversity.  

The planning team maintain 56 forest plans to ensure the forest activities have full approval for felling and restocking and that our UKWAS accreditation is maintained.  As forest plans are revised the planner will take the lead in ensuring that the plans are fit for purpose and delivering against the latest policies, legislation and best practice for forest and land management in its widest sense. 

This role embodies the key values of Forestry England:

  • We think beyond a lifetime, planning today for a better tomorrow, so our business and our forests are sustainable and fit for the future. 
  • We are adventurous, approaching challenges with creativity and adventure, embracing research and innovation to stay relevant.
  • We do it together.  We get our best results when we work with others and encourage diverse perspectives so we make better decisions.

Forestry England aims to be an exemplar of best practice sustainable forest management and all our activities are independently certified to the UK Woodland Assurance Standard (UKWAS).



Job description

The purpose of the job is to develop, consult on and deliver forest plans which maximise natural capital while being commercially sustainable.  Plans will deliver excellence in sustainable forest management for people, nature and the economy and comply with the United Kingdom Forestry Standard (UKFS) and the United Kingdom Woodland Assurance Standard (UKWAS). 

Key Work Areas

  • People Lead and line manage our GIS technician.
  • Operational management: survey work. Plan & manage survey work to ensure that work is delivered within FEs operational guidance, safety standards and the UK Forestry Standard.
  • Forest Planning. Create and maintain forest plans that deliver sustainable forest management for people, nature, and the economy. Maximise the productive capacity for timber whilst restructuring plantations to design in resilience to climate change and habitat priorities.
  • Maintain compliance with UK Forest Standard and UK Woodland Assurance Standard.
  • Increasing natural capital. Maximise Natural Capital delivery within forest plans, striking a balance with the need to produce timber.  Ensure plans deliver against key objectives including restocking on peat, the ancient woodland & plantation on ancient woodlands (PAWs) programme, the designated sites objective to achieve 75% favourable status by 2043 and that high value species and habitats are identified so that management choices conserve and enhance these. Improve and enhance heritage features in district.







Person specification


  • Proven track record of working in land and/or forest management in the UK.
  • Ability to think strategically and identify consequences of proposals.
  • Able to use GIS systems such as Arc-view or Forester Web.
  • IT computer skills.
  • HND or degree level qualification (or equivalent) or relevant experience in forestry, environmental management or a related subject.
  • Ability to analyse and solve problems creatively.
  • Excellent communication skills in both written and verbal format.
  • Full UK Driving Licence


  • Understanding of forest or land management planning guidelines, regulations and legislation.
  • Enthusiasm and the ability to working in a team and with partners.

Please clearly demonstrate how the above applies to you throughout your application. Failure to do so will mean that your application is automatically sifted out.




HND or degree level qualification (or equivalent) or relevant experience in forestry, environmental management or a related subject.


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

  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Changing and Improving
  • Managing a Quality Service
  • Delivering at Pace
Alongside your salary of £29,863, Forestry Commission contributes £8,063 towards you being a member of the Civil Service Defined Benefit Pension scheme. Find out what benefits a Civil Service Pension provides.
  • Learning and development tailored to your role
  • An environment with flexible working options
  • A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity
  • A Civil Service pension with an average employer contribution of 27%
  • 25 days annual leave increasing to 30 days after 5 years service plus 10.5 Public, Privilege and Additional holidays

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles (opens in a new window), and will assess your Behaviours and Experience.

As part of the application process you will be asked to complete a name-blind CV and Personal Statement. Further details are found on the application form.

We will use your CV and Personal Statement to assess whether you have the Experience we are looking for, so include examples to show us how your past work is similar to the advertised role.

Your CV needs to list your full job history and include a short description of what each job involved. Please provide reasons for any gaps in employment over the last two years.

Your Personal Statement (no longer than 500 words) is an opportunity for you to outline your personal skills, qualities and experience and explain how these make you suited to the advertised role.

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


Interviews will be held at the District Office at Eals Burn, Bellingham, NE48 2HP on Thursday 22nd August - this date could be subject to change. At interview you will be asked questions on your experience and the behaviours listed in the advert.

Further Information

A reserve list may be held for a period of 12 months from which further appointments can be made.

Any move to Forestry Commission 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

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 [email protected] stating the job reference number in the subject heading.

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

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

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. 

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 [email protected] 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 youre deaf, a Language Service Professional.

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

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


Successful candidates must undergo a criminal record check.
People working with government assets must complete baseline personnel security standard (opens in new window) checks.

Nationality requirements

This job is broadly open to the following groups:

  • UK nationals
  • nationals of the Republic of Ireland
  • nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
  • nationals of the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein and family members of those nationalities with settled or pre-settled status under the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS) (opens in a new window)
  • nationals of the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein and family members of those nationalities who have made a valid application for settled or pre-settled status under the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS)
  • individuals with limited leave to remain or indefinite leave to remain who were eligible to apply for EUSS on or before 31 December 2020
  • Turkish nationals, and certain family members of Turkish nationals, who have accrued the right to work in the Civil Service
Further information on nationality requirements (opens in a new window)

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code (opens in a new window) 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 (opens in a new window).
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.
The Civil Service also offers a Redeployment Interview Scheme to civil servants who are at risk of redundancy, and who meet the minimum requirements for the advertised vacancy.

Diversity and Inclusion

The Civil Service is committed to attract, retain and invest in talent wherever it is found. To learn more please see the Civil Service People Plan (opens in a new window) and the Civil Service Diversity and Inclusion Strategy (opens in a new window).
This vacancy is part of the Great Place to Work for Veterans (opens in a new window) initiative.
The Civil Service welcomes applications from people who have recently left prison or have an unspent conviction. Read more about prison leaver recruitment (opens in new window).
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 :

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: [email protected]. If you are not satisfied with the response you receive, you can contact the Civil Service Commission, which regulates all Civil Service recruitment.


Our use of cookies

We use necessary cookies to help our site function. We’d also like to use analytics cookies that help us make improvements by measuring how you use our website.

For more detailed information about the cookies we use, see our Cookies page.

Necessary cookies

Necessary cookies enable core website functionality such as network management, security and accessibility. You may disable these by changing your browser settings, but this may impact how the website functions.

Analytics cookies


We’d like to collect website analytics cookies information using Google Analytics to help us improve our website. We collect this data by running Google Analytics JavaScript on your device, which collects data about how you interact with our site. The data is collected in a way that does not directly identify anyone. For more information please see our Cookies page.