Head Groundsperson

Role Summary

The Head Groundsperson reports to the Estates Bursar and has key professional relationships with the Deputy Head (Co-curricular), Head of PE and Heads of Sport. S/he has overall responsibility for the provision of playing surfaces, sports pitches and other areas of the grounds to the highest possible standard across the sites at both the senior and prep school. The Head Groundsperson acts as line manager to the groundsmen and also to the Head Gardener and his team.

Job Responsibilities

The successful applicant will be responsible and accountable for the following:

• Ensuring that the grounds team provides first-class playing surfaces, sports pitches and other grounds areas at all times

• The production, preparation, maintenance, supervision and day-to-day coordination of playing surfaces for sports and all other recreational areas (e.g. gardens and lawns) to the highest recognised industry standards

• The cost-effective delivery of grounds-related services across the site with due regard to time, financial and compliance pressures

• Planning, implementing, monitoring and evaluating all grounds-related work (e.g. playing fields, landscaping and facilities development projects) within the site


• To ensure that pupils, staff, parents and visitors have the best possible experience of using the playing fields and grounds across the sites

• To prepare, implement and monitor weekly, monthly, termly and annual maintenance programmes within a rolling five-year plan in order to ensure the highest standards of playing surface presentation

• To ensure the efficient maintenance and availability of grounds-related resources at the School, including but not limited to:

• Playing surfaces and School gardens and grounds

• Project development and construction activities

• Property or structures such as fences

• Grounds-related machinery, equipment and materials

• Irrigation systems

• Grounds management IT systems

• To recommend and guide the School’s leadership team and those responsible for the sporting co-curricular programme on the most appropriate use of the playing fields and other grounds within the School

• To liaise with the Deputy Head (Co-curricular) and heads of relevant sports to ensure their requirements are met

• To liaise with the Old Blundellian’s Association to ensure their requirements are met.

• To recognise and embrace the importance of ensuring that School sports fixtures are fulfilled whenever it is reasonable for them to be played, but to recommend ‘no play’ decisions to the Deputy Head (Co-curricular) should this prove necessary

• To supervise grounds-related activities relating to the sporting programme (e.g. maintenance timetables for playing surfaces, car park control etc.

• To determine the grounds-related needs of pupils, staff, parents and visitors and to promote the school’s services and facilities whenever possible

• To provide front line grounds services in adverse weather conditions, including snow/ice clearance from pathways around the sites

• To be routinely present during Saturday fixtures and to coordinate the availability of other grounds staff on those occasions.

Budget Management and Procurement

• To prepare, propose, manage and monitor a grounds management budget, which incorporates labour resources, ground maintenance materials, external contractors’ costs, machinery maintenance, purchase of new equipment, and capital works

• To prioritise grounds-related spending and to determine which work can be deferred if required

• To co-ordinate the negotiation, purchase, storage and control of all consumable materials, equipment and services in a cost-effective manner

• To ensure the availability of supplies, particularly emergency materials for adverse weather conditions

• To implement, under the guidance of senior staff, the grounds-related objectives within the facilities section of the School Development Plan.


• To maintain appropriate awareness of grounds industry developments and to inform senior staff of how these might affect the School

• To ensure compliance with all relevant national and local regulations, including but not limited to the following: Health and Safety, First Aid, COSHH, environment management and employment

• To possess a thorough understanding of legislation relating to grounds-related chemicals and dangerous substances; to promote safe working practices at all times when grounds staff are using these

• To manage the grounds-related facilities, plant, buildings and equipment; to ensure that all grounds equipment is correctly stored, maintained and serviced

• Conduct risk assessments, and create safe systems of work

• To develop contingency plans and be able to respond to emergencies

• Actively promote safe practices of self and others Staff

• To lead, motivate and develop the Grounds team to achieve their tasks, work schedules and objectives

• To encourage maximum commitment and efficient service at all times

• To supervise contract staff who are conducting grounds-related work

• To assist in the administration of grounds staff induction, probationary periods and performance reviews

• To encourage the continuing professional development of all members of the Grounds team

Security Accountabilities

• To ensure the shutdown and security of School outbuildings at the end of the working day during term time and Half Term holiday periods

• To ensure that any security lapses or issues identified during the daily shutdown process are formally reported to the Estates Bursar or Bursar on the same day

• To assist with general site security matters as required and determined by the Estates Bursar

• To respond to out-of-hours security alerts as required by the Estates Bursar or Bursar.


To undertake relevant training courses within and outside the School to develop professionally and to increase proficiency and safety awareness.


• To co-ordinate (in conjunction with the Estates Bursar and Head Porter) on-site car parking requirements during the School week and for agreed weekend events

• To act as Fire Marshal and First Aider as required (N.B. Appropriate training is provided)

• To be a member of the School’s Health and Safety Committee

• To procure and oversee the installation of Christmas trees for the Senior and Prep Schools

• Any other reasonable tasks required by the Headmaster and/or Bursar and Estates Bursar in association with the above role.

Please note that there may be some changes and additions to the above. This document is designed to provide applicants with a “flavour” of the position and responsibilities and is not necessarily comprehensive, however, the employee may be called on to perform other tasks as directed by the SLT or anyone acting on their behalf.


The successful candidate is likely to be able to demonstrate the following skills, qualifications and experience.

• A commitment to the safeguarding and wellbeing of all pupils at Blundell’s School

• Excellent knowledge in Grounds management with a minimum of five years’ experience as a Grounds person with knowledge of cricket grounds, rugby and football pitches and artificial surfaces

• Minimum of two years’ proven management experience

• National/Scottish Vocational Qualification Level 3 Amenity Horticultural and Sports Turf Management or IOG National Diploma in Turf Culture or BTEC/HND/HNC in Turf Science and Sports Ground Management or City and Guilds

• Appropriate understanding of the relevant Health & Safety regulations, environmental management legislation and employment legislation

• Formal training in manual handling and risk assessment

• Budget planning and management

• A valid UK driving licence

• Excellent organisational skills, with a high degree of attention to detail

• Excellent written and spoken communication skills

• High professional standards and experience of working to deadlines and delivering results

• A willingness to go the extra mile and a ‘can do’ approach

• A team-orientated approach and a capacity to work with a flexible outlook in support of fellow team members

• A professional appearance; a friendly, approachable and polite demeanour

• An ability to identify and complete tasks independently

• A flexible and adaptable approach in order to meet fast-changing grounds needs and priorities

• A willingness to assist and deal confidently with internal and external grounds-related enquiries.

To apply for this position, please visit our website www.blundells.org to download an application form.

Please return to recruitment@blundells.org before the closing date of 24th November 2019.

Blundell’s is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children. Applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening including checks with past employers and the Disclosure and Barring Service.

Contact details are not available for expired adverts

Blundell's School


Nov 6th 2019, 15:00

24th November 2019