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Arboriculturist Profile

Arboriculturist Profile

 

Introduction

This Section of the site details information that you might find useful if you are looking to secure employment or require further details regarding working as an Arboriculturist. This page details the following Information:-

  • Finding Suitable Work as an Arboriculturist
  • Working Duties Expected
  • Hours and Environment
  • Working Skills Required
  • Training Requirements
  • Salary Expectations
  • Trade Information
  • Other useful Arboriculturist Work Information



Finding Suitable Work

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Working Duties Expected

Arboriculturists are sometimes referred to as consultant arboriculturists or arboricultural officers, and are responsible for managing the planting, cultivation and maintenance of trees and shrubs grown for amenity purposes. They work either as private consultants for clients or are employed as local government officers.

They conduct surveys and inspections to assess the environmental impact of trees, identify diseases or pests, and decide planting strategy, taking into account soil type, conditions and the visual qualities required. Reports must then be prepared and consultations held with the public, local councils, private companies or voluntary organisations. Some situations could be potentially confrontational.

Arboriculturists organise the planting, lifting, packing and transplanting of trees, or the remedial action needed to control pests or disease. This includes pruning or complete removal of affected trees.

Projects require costing and preparation of contract specifications and tender documents where the work is sub-contracted. Other budgetary responsibilities include buying stock and equipment, and arboriculturists are also responsible for staff training and implementing safety policy.

Hours and Environment

Arboriculturists work a 35 to 39 hour week, Monday to Friday, but could be called out at other times to deal with emergencies.

The working environment varies from offices to being outside in all weather conditions, with the possibility of climbing trees to carry out inspections. This would require use of safety equipment such as harnesses, boots and helmets. Occasional periods away from home may be necessary.

Skills and Interests

To be an arboriculturist you should:

  • have practical skills and physical fitness with a head for heights
  • enjoy working outdoors and be interested in conservation and the environment
  • have a good knowledge of tree biology and pathology
  • have some understanding of civil engineering and construction techniques
  • have good communication skills and be able to read plans and maps
  • be confident and able to present a professional image
  • have management skills and the ability to prioritise
  • have some design creativity

Entry

Entry is with a relevant degree or higher national diploma, or a combination of experience and one of the professional qualifications recognised in arboriculture. A good standard of physical fitness and a full UK driving licence are essential.

For entry to a BTEC/SQA higher national diploma you need three GCSEs (A-C)/S grades (1-3) and one A levels/two H grades, or the equivalent. Courses are two years long, or three if a sandwich year is included.

In Scotland, SQA higher national certificate courses are available, for which you need one or two H grades, or the equivalent. These courses last one year and could lead to employment as a supervisor or self-employed contractor. Progression onto a higher national diploma is common. Part-time options may be available.

Entry to a degree is with five GCSEs (A-C)/S grades (1-3) and two A levels/three H grades, or equivalent qualifications. Degree courses are three or four years long and some include a sandwich year.

For some of courses you might need a science subject at A level/H grade or equivalent, and possibly some practical experience. You may be able to gain pre-course work experience with an organisation such as the National Trust, which accepts and trains volunteers.

For details of qualification equivalents see:

Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (England, Wales and Northern Ireland)
Scottish Qualifications Authority
An Access to Higher Education course may also be acceptable as an entry requirement. If experienced in a related field, you may be able to gain recognition of skills through Accredited Prior Learning (APL). Please check with colleges or universities for exact entry requirements.

It is possible to enter at craft level as an arboricultural worker without academic qualifications, and to progress to more senior positions with a combination of experience and part-time study.

Training

Further training is usually by studying for the professional qualifications available to people employed in arboriculture. These include:

The Arboricultural Associations Technicians Certificate in Arboriculture for those aiming for a technical, supervisory or managerial role. There are no specific entry qualifications or experience, and applicants can prepare for the examination by self-directed study or by part-time college study.
The Royal Forestry Societys Professional Diploma in Arboriculture. To be eligible, candidates must be over 23 and have been in the industry full-time for at least three years.
The Institute of Chartered Foresters Professional Examination with arboriculture options. Candidates need two or more years experience in an approved practice. This can only be studied via distance learning. Relevant HNDs/degrees can give exemptions from some of the examination units.
Relevant postgraduate qualifications are also available.

Opportunities

Arboriculturists are employed by local authorities, private landowners, public bodies, forest management companies, consultancy firms and contracting companies (tree surgery firms). Many experienced arboriculturists become self-employed, while others find work overseas.

It is possible to gain promotion from technical, supervisory or management posts to director level. Registered private consultants or senior positions in local authorities usually require The Royal Forestry Societys Professional Diploma in Arboriculture or chartered membership of the Institute of Chartered Foresters, gained by passing their professional examination.

Annual Income

Figures are intended as a guideline only.

On entry, arboriculturists can expect a salary of around £12,000 to £15,000 a year.
With experience, this rises to £18,000 to £25,000 a year.
The highest salaries are around £30,000 a year.

Further information

The Arboricultural Association
Ampfield House
Romsey
Hampshire
SO51 9PA
Tel: 01794 368717
www.trees.org.uk

Lantra
Lantra House
Stoneleigh Park
Nr Coventry
Warwickshire
CV8 2LG
Tel: 0845 707 8007
www.lantra.co.uk

Institute of Chartered Foresters
7A St Colme Street
Edinburgh
EH3 6AA
Tel: 0131 225 2705
www.charteredforesters.org

The Royal Forestry Society
102 High Street
Tring
Hertfordshire
HP23 4AF
www.rfs.org.uk

Other Useful Arboriculturist Work Information

We have a section available at this site on Arboriculturist job interview tips that you may find of interest should you wish to brush up your skills in this area and we also have number of career articles that may also be of use to you from within our guides and documents section.

Locations where we feature Jobs include:-
Aberdeen, Berkshire, Aberdeen, Bath, Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Birmingham, Bradford, Bristol, Cambridgeshire, Cardiff, Central London, Cheltenham, Cornwall, Coventry, Derby, Devon, Docklands, Dorset, Dundee, Durham, East Midlands, East Sussex, Edinburgh, Essex, Glasgow, Gloucester, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Kent, Lancashire, Leeds, Leicester, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Midlands and in various parts of the West Midlands

Details of other Arboriculturist Jobs can also be found in other UK wide areas including:-
Milton Keynes, Newcastle, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Norfolk, North London, North Midlands, Northampton, Northamptonshire, Northern Ireland, Northumberland, Norwich, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, Oxford, Oxfordshire, Plymouth, Salisbury, Scotland, Sheffield, Shropshire, Somerset, South East, South London, South Midlands, Southampton, Staffordshire Surrey, Swansea, Swindon, Telford, Wales, Warwickshire, West End, West London, West Midlands, Worcestershire, York and throughout Yorkshire.

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