The purpose of this role is to manage a team of project officers to influence, support and work with farmers, landowners, partners and land managers within the North Devon Biosphere to implement improved land management projects on their holdings in line with the sustainable development principles of our Biosphere.   Projects range from new woodland planting to sustainable agricultural changes (such as Agroforestry).
The role will support and help farmers move towards Environmental Land Management Scheme (due to be introduced in 2024) and involve developing relationships with the community of farmers, land managers and landowners who wish to practice ‘regenerative’ farming, woodland management and/or ‘wild’ their land sympathetically for wildlife and to access new, diversified and resilient revenue streams as a result (for example Carbon offsets, Biodiversity Net Gains, and natural flood management and water quality improvement). Advice will also support landowners to access the England Woodland Creation Offer (EWCO).

Projects will deliver Water Framework Directive (WFD), Flood Risk Management Plan, Biodiversity 2030, 25 Year Environment Plan (25YEP) and Nature Recovery Strategy outcomes.

You will play a key leadership role in the North Devon Biosphere Foundation’s efforts for environmental improvements through managing project resources and actions.  It will include coordination with project partners such as the Environment Agency, Devon Wildlife Trust (on their Natural Solutions project), Westcountry Rivers Trust (on their Woodlands for Water project) and existing members of the North Devon Catchment Partnership to ensure successful delivery of funded projects.

Project management 

  • Coordinate and manage land management consultants across various funded projects
  • Take projects from conception business case to initiation in conjunction with funders, key project partners such as the Environment Agency and Devon Wildlife Trust
  • Project planning including setting CLEAR and SMART goals, scoping, schedules, milestones, communication plans and risk management registers
  • Project execution – assigning team and resources, set up tracking systems and project meetings
  • Project performance and monitoring – objective tracking, monitoring and performance, cost tracking and deliverables
  •  Project closure and reporting in line with the requirements from the donor bodies

The project will be managed using PRINCE2 methodologies and rigor. The following inputs will be required to deliver the project:

  • Strategic management: to provide oversight and project executive role as well as specialist advice on the technical elements of the project
  • Project Management; coordinate management (including risk management), reporting, including documentation and claims, procurement of contractors (including specialist skills for EIA), Habitat Regulations, heritage and planning
  • Project Management of delivery team including a land management consultant and woodland creation consultant. Delivery oversight includes:
  • Farm Advisory work; contacting and working with farmers, supporting external grant applications
  • Stakeholder engagement and communications; to work with communities and landowners to help deepen understanding and support for improving land management and managing woodland
  • Specialist contractors will be engaged to deliver some of the technical elements of the project including some scheme designs and/or specific on farm interventions.
  • Specific control of Subsidy. 

Project deliverables  

To support the North Devon Biosphere Foundation to:

  • Develop and negotiate project proposals and deliver consultancy projects in time and on budget.
  • Carry-out day-to-day planning and coordination of assigned projects and projects teams – allocate time and resources and monitor progress, deliverables and budgets.
  • Provide technical support on environmental and land management issues to Land Advisory Team
  • Manage projects successfully including set up, plan and manage resources, deal with key issues and challenges to ensure successful delivery.
  • Effective stakeholder engagement including dealing with customers and partners using knowledge and understanding of situations to drive a win: win solutions
  • To support the delivery of innovative projects which benefit communities and the environment.
  • Create improved or introduce new methods or processes to improve the desired result or ways of working.
  • To develop a team to achieve the best results by working in genuine partnership and collaboration with others. Take a lead role in aspects of a project and build relationships and support others to ensure the team works successfully together.
  • Maintain a clear understanding of the current policy and strategic factors relating to the sustainable management and sourcing of forestry and agricultural commodities