The Living Rainforest

Head Keeper

We are looking for an enthusiastic and knowledgeable Head Keeper to join our small but experienced Animal Team, who maintain our animal collection. Tasks would include constantly reviewing the collections management, standards and practices and developing our collection to offer a unique blend of diversity for an authentic rainforest feel to ensure our visitors have an inspiring visit.

The Trust for Sustainable Living is a registered charity based near Newbury, Berkshire. Our visitor centre, The Living Rainforest, is home to over 850 species of plants and animals, including rare and endangered species of global conservation value.

This is a great opportunity to work with a wide variety of species from Mammals, Reptiles and Amphibians to Fish and Invertebrates.

The Role

As Head Keeper you will lead a dedicated and enthusiastic team and key responsibilities include:

  • Ensuring the highest standards of animal husbandry, welfare and exhibit
  • Overseeing budgets and developing conservation projects in keeping with the ethos of the organisation
  • Oversee the animal keeper team and volunteers’ development, training and evaluation both in animal management and customer service
  • Support with developing public engagement
  • Set and implement protocols to allow safe and legal functioning of the department and maintain welfare standards
  • Implement all developing zoo and other relative legislation (including Zoo license, CITES, BALAI, Article 30 and 10, records and more)
  • The team is small so this is a very hands-on role, working on a rota of 5 out of 7 days a week, including weekends and holidays

The successful candidate will have:

  • A relevant degree
  • Ideally at least 3 years experience within a zoo environment
  • Some managerial experience
  • Experience of a diversity of taxa, husbandry and management of animal exhibits and facilities within a themed environment
  • Strong leadership skills and the ability to build strong working relationships across teams

In return we offer:

  • A friendly, supportive environment
  • 28 days holiday (including Bank Holidays) plus an extra day leave at Christmas
  • Discount in our Shop and Cafe
  • Free tickets for family and friends
  • Team socials such as summer BBQs and Christmas events

Apply for this job

To apply, please send your CV together with a covering letter explaining why you would be the best candidate for the role to Robyn Daniels, HR Manager,

Thank you for your interest in joining our team. Due to the popularity of some vacancies, if we haven’t contacted you back within 28 days, please assume that your application was unsuccessful.

We aim to be an equal opportunities employer and we are determined to ensure that no applicant or employee receives less favourable treatment on the grounds of gender, age, disability, religion, belief, sexual orientation, marital status, or race, or is disadvantaged by conditions or requirements which cannot be shown to be justifiable.

The Living Rainforest is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, young people and Adults at Risk. Therefore the successful applicant will need to undertake an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service check for this role.