Volunteer Guide (Wild plant walks)

Westonbirt, The National Arboretum

Tetbury, Gloucestershire

Volunteer • Part Time

www.forestry.gov.uk/westonbirt-volunteering louise.amato@forestry.gsi.gov.uk 0300 0674853 Louise Amato

Reference: GWP/291117

Sectors: conservation & wildlife, ecology

Closing date: Sunday, 31 December 2017

Volunteer guides introduce visitors to the special flora of the arboretum by highlighting the wildflowers that grow across the site and sharing their passion about them. They are key in promoting the biodiversity value of the arboretum.


Wild plant walks run each month from April – September inclusive; walks last about 2 hours.

What’s involved?

  • Leading parties of visitors safely around the arboretum.
  • Providing visitors with a thought provoking walk focussing on Westonbirt’s wild plants and the management practices that help them to flourish.
  • Planning the route and discussion to suit the season, available routes and needs of different visitors.
  • Some additional time will be needed to design each month’s walk, depending on your specific interest areas.
  • Advising visitors on where they may obtain further information.
  • Promoting Westonbirt; promoting the Friends’ Charity and membership.

We’d like you to be

  • Able to find wild plants and identify them (although training will be given).
  • Able to talk about the plants; this can be folklore, uses, botanical information or ecology (again training will be provided).
  • Confident in engaging and communicating with all kinds of visitors, able to speak effectively to groups of people, whilst being reliable, positive, patient, and keen to share your enthusiasm for the arboretum with others.
  • Good attention to detail, an interest in wild plants, and a willingness to learn and promote our key messages are also important.
  • Floral routes cover a wide variety of areas across the arboretum as they go where the flowers grow! As a result the terrain may be uneven, rough or muddy and involve steep slopes of the Downs. You will be walking on and off paths in ALL weathers so a level of fitness and mobility is required for this role. Please ask for further advice.

We will

  • Provide you with three days of full training. The first two will be part of our guide training programme. These are: 10am-4pm on Saturday 20 January 2018 and Saturday 17 March 2018
  • In addition to these there will be a specific day of training focusing on wildflower routes, flora and specific aspects related to the wild plant walks. This training is followed by a period of ‘shadowing’ experienced wild plant guides. Please note; training is mandatory for this position.
  • Provide you with an on-site radio for communication.
  • Invite you to team meetings held four times per year which include on-going training.
  • Provide access to Westonbirt’s library and archive resources for further research.
  • Pay a contribution to the cost of volunteering travel. 

 Please send your application to us     by Sunday 31 December 2017 via email to louise.amato@forestry.gsi.gov.uk or by post to Louise Amato, Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, Tetbury GL8 8QS    

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