- Physical work outdoors in forests and woodlands
- You'll need to be highly practical, safety-conscious and willing to work outdoors in all weathers
- Progress to management roles, overseeing whole woodlands or forests
As a forestry worker, you'll be responsible for the management of the environment within forests and woodland areas.
- Clearing undergrowth for planting
- Planting new tree seedlings
- Digging drainage systems
- Thinning out densely wooded areas
- Felling trees
- Stripping branches and chopping up tree trunks
- Protecting the forest against insect pests and disease
- Clearing footpaths and nature trails
- Maintaining car parks
- Putting up fences, gates, signs and public information notices
- Checking and maintaining tools and equipment
- Preventing forest fires
You could work in a park or in woodland. Your working environment may be physically demanding and outdoors in all weathers. You'll need practical skills to operate machinery, and organisational skills to manage your workload. Other requirements include the ability to use your initiative, thoroughness and attention to detail, knowledge of geography and maths, basic computer skills, the ability to remain calm in stressful situations, and good leadership skills.
Some of your work may be hazardous, as you'll be using power tools while working at height. You'll need to wear protective clothing for certain jobs and a safety harness for climbing trees.
To be a forestry worker, you'll need the ability to use your initiative, thoroughness and attention to detail, knowledge of geography and maths, basic computer skills, to work well with others, the ability to remain calm in stressful situations, and good leadership skills.
You could study for a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree in forestry, arboriculture, countryside management, forest management, or woodland ecology and conservation. You may want to choose to study a degree accredited by the Institute of Chartered Foresters.
You could take a college course to learn some skills needed for this job, including Land-based Technology, and Forestry and Arboriculture.
You can get into this job through an intermediate apprenticeship as a forest operative.
You can also apply for a graduate training scheme with the Forestry Commission England.
Volunteering for a woodland or wildlife charity is a good way to get experience, which could help when looking for work.
You could progress to senior forest worker or become a forest officer. You could also become a forest ranger, working with wardens or conservation officers to look after wildlife. You could become self-employed.