Volunteer Ranger

National Trust for Scotland

Balmacara, Northwest Highlands

Volunteer • Full Time

www.nts.org.uk/visit/places/balmacara-estate iturnbull@nts.org.uk 01599-566325 Iain Turnbull

Sectors: conservation & wildlife, environmental education

Closing date: Not specified, apply soon!

Location: Balmacara Estate, Northwest Highlands

Volunteer Role: Volunteer Ranger

Responsible to: Property Manager


The Balmacara Estate takes in the western end of the Lochalsh peninsula, and includes native woodland, open moorland, sheltered bays and pretty crofting villages. This is an exciting opportunity for you to gain valuable practical experience in a wide range of estate management and conservation tasks. You will also have the chance to work in some of Scotland’s most spectacular and beautiful scenery and be involved in outdoor work that will directly enhance and benefit the biodiversity of the area.


This position will ideally be full-time (9 am – 5 pm Monday to Friday) ideally for a period of 6-12 months. However, the hours and duration of the volunteer placement can be negotiated with the Property Manager if these hours are not suitable. As the location is remote, accommodation will be available on a rent-free basis for the duration of the role if required. The volunteer will be required to sign a ‘Conditions of Occupancy’ agreement prior to taking occupation of the accommodation, in line with current Trust policy.


Ideally full-time (9 am – 5 pm Monday to Friday) for an initial 6 months with possibility of extension. Hours and duration negotiable.


Volunteers allow the team at Balmacara Estate to carry out necessary practical conservation management and monitoring of the key features on the estate and important visitor management activities. This ensures that the conservation aims of the National Trust for Scotland are upheld and visitor enjoyment is optimised.

Support / Training

The position will be supervised by the Property Manager for Balmacara Estate. Additional day-to-day support will be provided by the Estate Conservation Officer and Estate Ranger. Training needs will be identified through discussions with the Property Manager and provided either on the job or through a formal course if required.

Main Duties

  • Work to an agreed work plan and produce interim reports as required
  • Assist with guided walks, events, education activities and volunteer groups
  • Assist with the implementation of the Estate Survey & Monitoring Programme
  • Assist with the monitoring of croft agricultural activity on the estate
  • Assist with the maintenance of the estate (e.g. footpaths, dykes, fences) and vegetation monitoring / management (e.g. bracken, gorse, Japanese knotweed, Rhododendron ponticum, Skunk Cabbage and Himalayan balsam)
  • Actively support the Trust’s “Conservation through Customer Care” programme and ensure the highest level of internal and external customer care
  • Actively promote the value of Trust membership to existing and potential members
  • Take appropriate responsibility for safety, health, and environment matters at the property
  • Assist with any other general estate work identified by the Property Manager.



  • Current clean driving licence


  • Degree or vocational qualification in an environment, agriculture or forestry related subject
  • Other equivalent qualifications or practical experience in related fields
  • Current Pesticide Application (PA1 and PA6) certification
  • Appropriate current chainsaw/tree-work certification and recent practical experience.

Volunteering Policy

The Trust’s volunteer policy outlines its commitment to the volunteer programme. The Trust values volunteer input and recognises volunteers as partners in the work of the organisation.

Benefits of Volunteering

Volunteers have the opportunity to become involved in further events across the Trust, depending on their interests. They also receive:

  • The opportunity to meet other like-minded people, and to gain skills, knowledge and experience in the heritage and environment sector, as well as meet people from all over the world.
  • Join in social events and attend lectures organised from time to time by properties and the National Trust for Scotland.
  • Learn about Scotland's history, culture and environment.
  • Volunteer card entitling the holder to free entry to NTS properties, and a 20% discount in NTS shops (after 40 hours volunteering)

Please mention environmentjob.co.uk when responding to this ad.