Explore: Education

Learning Officer
National Trust

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Nigel D

0.00.00 I’m Nigel D. I’m the Learning Officer here at Clumber Park in Nottinghamshire. I was brought up, it’s about, for it’s about in my village was about 15 miles away from here so I knew Clumber Park quite well. And I just came along and said look, can I be a volunteer here? Is there something I can do? Within a few weeks here there was a job came up and I suppose because I’d been volunteering here people knew what I could do and what I was like and they said why don’t you apply for that job? And I applied.

0.00.30 Got the job and at the time that job was one of the Warden jobs here, Countryside Warden job here, which is looking after the Countryside and its habitat management. My job evolved cos more and more the demand came for people who wanted to find out about Countryside, wanted to find out about wildlife. So a post was created here for Learning Officer which I kind of shuffled into really. And so it was an evolution rather than anything else.

0.01.00 At Cromwell Park I mean there are lots of work with school parties so during the week we’re mostly taken up with school parties coming in, probably one class at a time and we take them out and we teach them about the Park, but particularly about wildlife, about natural history. We also have a series of events and activities for adults as well, so we have adult groups coming out, looking at fungi, we might, we have a bird group, so we do education to do with birds.

0.01.30 That’s the fun of the job really cos there are so many different ways you can go and so many different things to find out about and to encourage other people to find out about and yeah, hopefully inspire them a little bit to get involved. The most fun part is working with children really, cos you know children, you never know what’s going to happen, and next we can never know what they’re going to ask you and never know what they’re going to want to find out about. I was always an outdoors kid. I wouldn’t say I ever knew that much about, as I do now, the nature, wildlife.

0.02.00 It was just a matter of fact acceptability about the outdoors and I just loved being outdoors and I loved being in the countryside. I don’t think I ever really knew where I was headed till I was in my 20s really. As a child I mean my strong subjects were things like history and English. Everything else was pretty weak to be honest and it wasn’t until much later on that I got into other things like science and that type of stuff.

0.02.30 The politics degree with economic and social history which was fascinating, really great. It was European politics so it was finding out about, you know, how the political system worked in France, Russia, Germany and also America and places like that. I had to get somewhere where I’d love to be so it was the place, the location. It was also the kind of type of work, conservation, was of interest to me, you know,

0.03.00 making sure the places that I lived, you know, would be there for other people in the future, you know, to be part of that was important. I always wanted to be in something that would keep me going, would make me want to come to work every morning, you know. Always been inspired by places. I mean my, the place I love the most in the whole world is the Lake District. When you’re there you just feel right. You just feel, you know this is the sort of place that is me, that suits me and you don’t need anything else, you know, you don’t need to have any money when you’re there.

0.03.30 You don’t need to flash around in your car, you just get out the car and just go, you know, step up into the fells, it’s just, it just feels right. I guess that filters into everything I do, in December where I work now, we haven’t got any mountains but we’ve got beautiful countryside and you know beautiful trees and you know you can go up and hug a tree or touch a tree and it just feels, yeah, fine, that’s great, that’s what you can do, it’s a some wonderful thing to be able to do and it’s very difficult to improve on something like this cos there’s so much here and it’s so interesting and a great place to be.


Nigel D is Learning officer at Clumber Park, a National Trust estate. The National Trust created the job because of the demand from the public to learn about wildlife and the countryside. At the time Nigel was countryside warden there, so he applied for the post.

More information about Vocational and industrial trainers and instructors

average salary

The UK average salary is £29,813

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

46%  male 
54%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

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? Vocational and industrial trainers provide instruction in manual, manipulative and other vocational skills and advise on, plan and organise vocational instruction within industrial, commercial and other establishments.
No formal educational qualifications are required for entry, although most entrants have qualified in some other area of work and will require a Certificate in Training Practice. Professional qualifications are available from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. NVQs/SVQs in Training and Development are available at Levels 3, 4 and 5.
  • Assesses training requirements and prepares lectures, demonstrations and study aids;
  • Supervises trainee development, assists trainees with difficulties and prepares regular progress reports on each trainee for management;
  • Arranges work experience and instructional visits for trainees;
  • Plans curriculum and rota of staff duties and updates or amends them in light of developments;
  • Advises on training programmes and discusses progress or problems with staff and trainees;
  • Devises general and specialised training courses in response to particular needs.
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