Waterway Operative – London East

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Waterway Operative - London East

  • Post Date:29th June 2022
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Job Description

Closing Date

Position Type


Advertised Salary
£24,626 inclusive of London allowance

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Job Purpose

The Canal & River Trust is one of the UK’s largest charities, we maintain 2,000 miles of historic canals, rivers, docks and reservoirs, along with museums, archives and the country’s third largest collection of protected historic buildings – preserving them for future generations. Our waterways are exciting, vibrant places to work.

We have a vacancy within our London & South East team. We are looking for a practical, outdoors loving, customer care focused person to join us as Waterway Operative based from our Enfield Lock site (EN3 6JG)

Learn more about our London and South East region here

Regional Map – London & South East

Working in and around our canals, operating locks, boats, bridges and weirs, you will deliver a service to the customer which is on time and in accordance with Canal & River Trust processes and procedures. Safety of yourself, colleagues and stakeholders will be at the forefront of your mind. You will have a practical approach and ability to turn your hand to a variety of tasks – from completing manual tasks improving and maintaining our waterways, to dealing positively with enquiries and approaches from our customers whether boaters, or towpath users on their daily commute, leisurely visit or volunteers giving their time to help us to deliver for our communities.

Your daily tasks will vary but all will contribute to the maintenance, conservation and improvement of the regions waterway network for local communities and visitors to enjoy. This role may also require the operation of (small) power tools to assist your work

Knowledge, Skills/Qualifications & Experience

About the role
This is outdoor, physical work, whatever the weather, so you really need to love working outside. Out on our towpaths you are the face of Canal & River Trust, so it is very important that you are comfortable dealing with the public and you’ll have a positive, practicable approach to dealing with customer queries and interactions. You will also be working with and supporting our volunteer groups from time to time, so it is important that you understand and value the contribtion all our volunteers make all year around.

As part of a small team, most of your working time will be spent in our unique and wonderful outdoor environment maintaining and transforming our canals and rivers into spaces where local people want to spend time, we have specific ways of carrying out work in our protected environment and we need people who will take great care to detail and work to a high standard.

Working Hours:
We provide services 7 days a week (including statutory holidays). In order to keep the waterways safe and to provide excellent customer service you must be able to commit to working on a rota system that will include working (but not all) weekends. You will also be included on a rota that provides 24-hour first response operational emergency cover, that may include site attendance. This flexibility is very important in order to be certain that we can respond to critical needs when they occur.


  • ensure that the customer experience is maximised by providing outstanding levels of customer service in accordance with defined standards.
  • promote Canal & River Trust by maintaining a professional approach at all times.
  • undertake water control duties including the operation of structures eg locks and bridges in a safe manner to ensure that customers are not hindered in their visit to the waterway.
  • undertake key duties associated with the maintenance of the waterway and waterside eg towpath litter removal, towpath and access repairs.
  • ensure that environmental and heritage issues are taken into consideration in all work that is undertaken.
  • attendance at waterway events
  • working closely alongside volunteer groups

About you

Knowledge, skills & experience


  • Health and safety awareness
  • Excellent customer service awareness and interaction
  • Ability to recognise and solve problems
  • Delivery of high standards and great care in the quality of your work
  • Good communicator with the ability to adapt styles but with the ability to handle all communications with respect for others
  • Basic literacy and numeracy skills
  • Full and UK valid driving licence – you will need to travel to remote areas of the geographical patch by own means/occasional use of company vehicle


  • heritage and environmental awareness
  • experience of using small tools and equipment

Application Process
We aim to represent the diverse communities we are part of. We strongly believe that a diverse workforce brings with it a diversity of ideas, thinking and ways of working which enhances what we do.

If you have any questions at all about this role or the application process, please do not hesitate to contact the team at CRT.recruitment@canalrivertrust.org.uk

What We Offer

In addition to your total annual salary of £24,626 (including London allowance), this role offers salary progression within the first 12 months. We also offer a competitive contributory DC Pension scheme arrangement, and numerous other employee benefits. Further details on our benefits can be found here.

We aim to represent the diverse communities we are part of and welcome applicants from across all sectors of the community. We strongly believe that a diverse workforce brings with it a diversity of ideas, thinking and ways of working which enhances what we do.

When you join the Canal & River Trust you become a member of an engaged team working to preserve our heritage for future generations. Come and put your skills to use on our waterways.

Find out more about the work we do on our website: https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/about-us

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