Farm Advisor, Severn Rivers Trust

Location Home Based with catchment work in the Clun valley (near to Craven Arms, Shropshire)
Salary £21,000 - 25,000 (pro-rata)
Closes January 15, 2021

Part-Time: 22.5 hours per week (3 days with potential to increase to 4 days)

Duration: until 30th September 2021 (potential for extension subject to funding)

Job Purpose

This post is suitable for an experienced and enthusiastic farm advisor to work on behalf of Severn Rivers Trust and deliver a programme of works funded by Defra aimed at reducing diffuse pollution on farms in the Clun catchment around Craven Arms in Shropshire.

The post-holder will deliver a programme of one to one farm visits to promote resource protection and a reduction in diffuse water pollution from agriculture.

The post-holder will aim to raise awareness, improve understanding and acceptance amongst farmers and land managers of diffuse pollution from agriculture and its impact on water quality and the wider water environment.

Engagement with farmers in targeted areas of the Clun will seek to create through a voluntary approach, a sense of ownership and achievement within the farming community in relation to water quality in the catchment.

Working with the farming community, the post-holder will undertake soil sampling and produce whole farm plans to inform future management recommendations; engaging farmers to undertake sustainable soil and nutrient management to reduce runoff to pathways and watercourses; identifying opportunities to create areas for tree planting and hedgerows, wetlands and scrapes to enhance biodiversity on the farm.

Main Responsibilities

  • Work with farmers to find opportunities to improve infrastructure and change land management practices, underpinned by a need to reduce diffuse agricultural pollution to surface water.
  • Undertake farm advice visits and identify runoff sources, pathways and receptors
  • Prepare a series of Farm plans supported by field-scale maps
  • Liaise with partner organisations to inform farm infrastructure improvements.
  • Supporting farmers and encouraging them to undertake a series of techniques to reduce soil erosion.
  • Provide practical advice on soil management and follow this up with multiple visits to increase the likelihood of change.
  • Undertake on-farm soil sampling at selected sites and liaise with contracted testing facilities and farmers
  • Co-ordinate, deliver and participate in events to help with the promotion and awareness raising of the core messages and schemes of the programme.
  • Plan and deliver on-farm and/or online events, sessions and develop partnerships in relation to water quality.
  • Promote, engage and seek participation in the project.
  • Provide advice and support for scheme participants.
  • Administer and verify scheme activity.
  • Maintain simple system of evaluation and feedback from farmers and land managers.
  • Prepare and submit monthly progress reports to ensure adequate monitoring of the programme, engagement activity and scheme take up into a Farmer Engagement Database.
  • Contribute to 6 monthly reporting schedules.
  • Participate in relevant Severn Rivers Trust water environment initiatives, programmes and projects during the period of the contract.
  • Participate in relevant partner activities where these are complimentary to the core programme, assist in the development of water environment focussed projects in target areas Signpost farmers and landowners to relevant external funding sources or specialist advice.
  • Through the work above, support landowners in satisfying cross-compliance, the Code of Good Agricultural Practice and the Silage Slurry and Agricultural Fuel Oil rules
  • Promote joined up thinking in the catchment through effective communication with other delivery officers, including Natural England and Environment Agency.
  • Carry out all duties and responsibilities with reasonable care for the health and safety of oneself and any other persons and co-operate fully with the Severn Rivers Trust in health and safety matters.
  • Some of this work may be required to be performed out of normal office hours.

Essential Knowledge and Experience

  • Relevant Higher level qualification (HND/Degree);
  • Good knowledge of Farming Practices – Beef, sheep, dairy, arable;
  • Knowledge of soils and nutrient management;
  • Have worked with and advised farmers and landowners;
  • Knowledge and experience of agri-environment, basic payment scheme and future schemes including Environment Land Management schemes;
  • An interest in current conservation issues affecting rivers and lakes;
  • Good IT skills, specifically MS Office;
  • Excellent interpersonal, oral presentation and written communication skills.
  • Ability to manage time effectively, work under pressure and meet deadlines.
  • An ability to think flexibly and creatively;
  • An understanding of Health and Safety procedures.

Desirable Experience & Knowledge

  • FACTS and/or BETA Conservation Qualified;
  • Previous experience of advice provision to farmers across all agri-environment schemes;
  • Experience of using Geographical Information Systems (GIS).

 Personal Attributes

  • High degree of professionalism, initiative and self-reliance.
  • Ability to work as part of a team; pragmatism, tact and diplomacy.
  • Commitment to equal opportunities and high standards of customer service.
  • A reasonable level of personal fitness.


Selection and Assessment

The candidates who appear to best meet the person specification will be invited to attend for interview. We recommend that applicants pay particular attention to demonstrating how they meet the person specification detailed above.

The assessment will consist of an interview designed to give candidates an opportunity to demonstrate their skills and suitability for the post. Details will be sent to short-listed candidates.

Interviews on Wednesday 20th January 2020 via Teams or zoom.


All our offers of employment are made, subject to some pre-employment checks including: Satisfactory References, checks on eligibility to work in the United Kingdom, Checks on relevant certificates.

Probationary Period

The Severn Rivers Trust operates a probationary period for all employees joining the Trust, which is in place to see whether you are able to meet the standards of the job.  This will be a period of 3 months.


Your initial salary will be based on your skills, knowledge and experience, and progression will be based on your performance. You will be paid monthly in arrears by credit transfer to a bank or building society account.


The post will be home based with travel to the Clun valley (near to Craven Arms, Shropshire).

Hours of Work

This is a part-time post (22.5 hours per week) with potential to increase to 4 days.

Holiday Entitlement

Our holiday year runs from January to December. Part-time employees get 31 days holiday (pro-rata) holiday per year including bank holidays.


You will be automatically enrolled in the Severn Rivers Trust Stakeholder Pension Scheme, though you may opt out. The employee contributes 5% and the Trust contribute 8%.


If you choose to leave the Trust you will be required to give one months’ notice once your probationary period is complete.

Equal Opportunities

Severn Rivers Trust is committed to equal opportunities and appoints on merit. We welcome applicants from all sections of society regardless of gender, sexual orientation, race, disability, marital status, age and religion, perceived community background or political beliefs.     


Please email a copy of your CV and a covering letter to Melissa Hoskings, Head of Land Management at the Severn Rivers Trust

Deadline for applications at 5pm on Friday 15th January 2020.             

Responding to Applications

Thank you for showing an interest in this job and for taking the time to apply. Unfortunately, due to administration costs borne by the charity, we regret that only short-listed candidates will be contacted. If you have not heard from us within four weeks of the closing date, then please assume that your application has been unsuccessful on this occasion.

The purpose of this information is solely to provide prospective candidates with details relating to the post. It may not be construed as an offer of employment, nor does it form part of the contract of employment or the role profile.


Farm Advisor, Severn Rivers Trust

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