Sole Gardener/Handyman (Live in accommodation provided)
An experienced and multi-skilled estate gardener is required to maintain a beautiful private garden in the Weald of Kent, on behalf of a welcoming and appreciative owner. Applications are sought from qualified professionals with experience of managing private gardens autonomously, with the willingness and ability to undertake general estate maintenance / handyman duties as required.
The retirement of a long-serving gardener has created an opportunity for a new employee to join the estate on a full-time permanent basis. The property comprises a main dwelling with various additional buildings including an adjacent flat, in which the successful applicant may live, rent free, with all bills and utilities covered by the employer.
Set within surrounding paddocks and farmland, the two-acre private garden comprises a kitchen garden with glasshouse and polytunnel, mixed beds and borders, flower beds, expansive lawns, mixed shrubs and an old rose Arbor. Well maintained hedges create separate areas within the garden, with predominantly native mature trees (sycamore, scots pine, holly and horse chestnut) providing structure and privacy. The property is not open to the public and while not considered a ‘show garden’ in the true sense by the owner, it can be accurately described as a traditional and charming English country garden.
The ideal candidate for this role will be academically qualified with demonstrable experience of managing private estate gardens as a Sole or Skilled Gardener. Applicants with extensive hands-on garden management experience but no academic qualifications will also be considered. Physical fitness and time management are important, as are traditional handyman skills and an ability to provide general security on the property.
Competence in the operation and basic maintenance of a range of garden machinery is essential, as is good plant knowledge and that of seasonal garden management. Applicants should have experience with plant propagation, kitchen gardening, correct species-specific pruning techniques (roses, formative pruning of young trees etc.), basic identification and treatment of plant pests and diseases, lawn care, as well as an ability to carry out associated estate duties as they arise. Spray certificates (PA/16) Chainsaw license (CS30-31) are required. Candidates must hold a full driving licence and be competent drivers, as a collection of classic cars is housed on site. Occasional moving and cleaning of the cars will be required as part of the handyman aspect of the role. Applicants with experience in the above areas as well as good DIY skills, are encouraged to apply. A flexible, positive and helpful attitude is necessary as is a conscientious, pro-active, hardworking and reliable approach.
Working hours will comprise 45-hours per week; Monday – Friday (07:30 – 17:00) with half an hour for lunch. No scheduled weekend working is required, though the live-in Sole Gardener will be responsible for the health and condition of the garden and glasshouse etc., such that weekend watering may be required during periods of hot weather. Holiday entitlement includes 28-days per annum (including Bank Holidays). A full UK driving licence and your own transport is required for this role for the above reason and as the property is located rurally.
A two-bedroom flat is provided for the Sole Gardener, adjacent to the main house. Due to the nature of the property and size of the accommodation, it is deemed unsuitable for children or pets, but would suit a single person or couple. The rent, bills and Council tax are all covered by the employer.
to apply Send CV and covering letter highlighting your career to date and experience to [email protected]
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