Principal Civil Engineer - Design and Assurance

Employer: Forestry England
Job location
East Midlands (England), East of England, London (region), North East England, North West England, South East England, South West England, West Midlands (England), Yorkshire and the Humber
Job salary
Job term
Job closing date

Forestry England is an organisation like no other. Our strong values and shared ambition to connect everyone with the nation’s forests underpin all that we do.

We are uniquely placed to confront the climate emergency, tackle the nature crisis and support the nation’s health and wellbeing. Working for Forestry England is to be part of the solution to the challenges of our generation.

Civil engineering underpins the delivery of Forestry England’s operational activities. The infrastructure we build and maintain supports all that Forestry England delivers. From the supply of sustainably sourced timber, through to being the largest outdoor recreation provider in the country, civil engineering is vital to our success.

This post is an extremely varied and exciting opportunity to join the Forestry England Civil Engineering team. You will play a key role, providing civil engineering leadership, assurance and technical services, in support of our organisational objectives.

Being part of Forestry England is to be part of a progressive and inclusive organisation, where you will work in and amongst some of the most diverse and spectacular natural environments in England. Our benefits include a generous holiday entitlement, substantial training, development and volunteering opportunities, flexible and blended working arrangements and membership of an excellent civil service pension scheme.

Job description

This important role is part of Forestry England’s national engineering team. As part of this team, you will provide leadership, assurance, commercial direction and specialist technical advice and support in relation to the delivery of our civil engineering activities. Alongside this, you will also play a key part in achieving our organizations ambition to be carbon net zero by 2030.

The role requires excellent communication skills and entails cross-functional change management in a complex matrix management organization. The ability to establish shared goals, influence, and lead significant change is essential.

The role will be based in one of Forestry England’s offices across England with flexibility for some optional blended working (see details below). Please be aware that this role can only be worked in the UK and not overseas.

Some travel throughout England with occasional short stays away from home will be required.


Key work areas

1. Lead on audit and assurance work related to the civil engineering function. This includes managing an internal cyclical audit programme, which covers all aspects of our civil engineering operations. Through this work, support the continuous improvement of our activities and development of our teams.

2. Lead and manage the delivery of procurement activities in conjunction with our commercial services team, which support the civil engineering function on a national scale. This includes establishing new frameworks and contracts, as well as dealing with the cycle of renewals of existing arrangements. Where required undertake the role of framework manager.

3. Lead on the authoring of technical guidance, which supports the delivery of our Forestry civil engineering activities. This will include consulting on and updating existing guidance, as well as identifying new areas, such as carbon net-zero, where further guidance and support is required.

4. Over time, establish and manage a centralised team, providing technical design services and advice on forestry related civil engineering projects, including minor works projects such as car parks, forest road construction, etc. Advise on the briefs for projects which would require external consultancy support and assist teams with the associated procurement activities.

5. Provide specialist technical advice to the organization, including civil engineers, landscape architects, land agents, building surveyors and other stakeholders on forestry civil engineering related issues.

6. Recommend technical specifications for contract documentation for the procurement of structural, infrastructure, special projects and other works. Provide technical advice and continually review best practice relating to all civil engineering assets and issues and share knowledge on good engineering practices.

7. Promote and encourage a positive health and safety culture around all Civil Engineering activity, leading by example. Champion the practical implementation of the CDM 2015 regulations throughout all stages of the project lifecycle.

8. Deputise for the Head of Civil Engineering and Landscape Architecture in professionally leading the civil engineering function, ensuring resilience and continuity of support.

For further information and details of how to apply for the post, please go to the Civil Service Jobs website: