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Countryside officer

Alternative titles for this job include Conservation officer

Countryside officers manage, protect and improve the rural environment.

Average salary (a year)

£22,000 Starter


£34,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

37 to 42 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends / bank holidays

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Countryside officer

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role


You could do a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree before applying for work as a countryside officer.

Relevant courses include:

  • countryside or environmental management
  • ecology and geography
  • environmental studies
  • plant biology
  • conservation

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree

More Information


You may be able to start as a trainee countryside officer after completing a course at an agricultural college, such as:

  • countryside studies
  • countryside management
  • T Level in Agriculture, Land Management and Production

Entry requirements

Entry requirements for these courses vary.

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths for a T Level

More Information


You could apply to do a Countryside Ranger Level 4 Higher Apprenticeship.

This can take around two and half years to complete.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship

More Information


You may be able to join an organisation as a countryside ranger, or assistant officer, and work your way up through on-the-job training and promotion.


Volunteering is a good way to get practical experience, meet new people and develop your network of contacts.

You can find opportunities with:

More Information

Professional and industry bodies

You could join the Countryside Management Association for professional development training.

Further information

You can get more details about working in the countryside from Lantra and Grow Careers.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • the ability to work well with others
  • analytical thinking skills
  • knowledge of biology
  • knowledge of geography
  • customer service skills
  • legal knowledge including court procedures and government regulations
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

Restrictions and Requirements

You'll need to:

  • have a full driving licence

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

As a countryside officer, you could:

  • advise landowners on how to manage their land
  • conduct environmental surveys, carry out research and analyse data
  • manage staff and volunteers
  • advise on and apply for funding
  • promote the countryside at events, visitor centres and on social media

Green job

As a countryside officer, you'll manage leisure and recreational activities in a sustainable way. You'll also protect wildlife and natural habitats. This can have a positive impact on the environment.

Find out more about green careers

Working environment

You could work in an office, in a park, in woodland or in the countryside.

Your working environment may be physically demanding and outdoors in all weathers.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience and further qualifications, you could:

  • become a senior officer, countryside manager or estate manager
  • move into forestry management or wildlife conservation
  • work in leisure and tourism in the National Parks

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Countryside Ranger Apprentice

  • Wage: £22,318 a year Annually
  • Location: Appleton Rd, Bishopthorpe

Courses In England

Environmental Conservation and Countryside Management Advanced Extended Certificate (Level 3)

  • Start date: 02 September 2024
  • Location: Enfield

Environmental Studies and Conservation Level 3

  • Start date: 11 September 2024
  • Location: Guildford

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