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Pay and Pension

After your salary, your Civil Service pension is one of your most significant benefits.
When joining Forest Research, employees have the opportunity to choose between 2 pension schemes:

  • Alpha (with generous employer contributions starting at 26%)
  • The partnership pensions account

A Civil Service pension may provide you with financial security and options when you retire, as well as significant benefits for your family and loved ones.

For full details of the pension schemes, visit the Civil Service Pension website.


You’re entitled to 25 days (pro-rata) of annual leave each year, rising by one day every year to a maximum of 30 days after five years’ service.

In addition to our generous annual leave allowance, you also get 10.5 days (pro-rata) public and privilege holidays each year.

You can claim up to three days special leave for volunteering per annum.

If you are a Reservist, we offer generous additional leave.

For additional flexibility, you can also buy or sell up to five days of holiday per year.

Flexible Working

We can offer you a range of flexible working arrangements to allow you to organise your working day to suit your lifestyle and circumstances.

We have a range of options available such as a blend of working at our sites and working from home.

For some roles, we can offer a flexible working pattern, like part-time working, compressed hours, job shares or the choice to vary your hours day-to-day within the requirements of your role and to offer you a better work-life balance.

Your Development

Whether you join our coffee-break science seminars or the Forestry Commission Professional Managers programme, we’re committed to helping you develop. During your career at Forest Research, there will be both informal and formal development opportunities, to help you to do your job and support your longer-term career goals.

As well as access to a wide range of forestry and science related technical training, you will have access to the Government Campus training portal which has an extensive choice of learning topics, live training, networking opportunities and other useful ways of developing your skills and expertise.

You can also apply to study for professional qualifications such as an undergraduate degree, MSc or PhD, which, subject to approval, we’ll pay for.

If you’re a member of a professional body or association, you may re-claim the cost of your annual subscription if this is directly relevant to your job role.


Your wellbeing is extremely important to us. We have a suite of tools, specialists and networks to help you, should you need support.

If you are ill, you are entitled to up to 12 months paid sick leave (6 months at full pay and 6 months at half pay). We also provide occupational health services.

You will have access to an employee assistance programme (EAP). It offers confidential, independent, and unbiased information and guidance on a range of emotional, health and social subject areas. Support is given for both work-related and personal matters, and is available 24 hours, 365 days a year.

FR is proud to have taken part in the Workplace Wellbeing Index initiative run by Mind, the mental health charity, achieving a bronze award.

Discounts & More

At Forest Research, all employees have access to our benefits portal. This offers discounts that’ll save you money on everyday supermarket shopping, as well as on gadgets, clothes, mobile phones, electrical items, medical insurance, holidays, discounted gym membership. There’s also free parking at Forestry England sites and free entry to the English National Arboretums.

Family Friendly Policies

Employees have access to:

  • Maternity leave – up to 52 weeks of leave (paid and unpaid)
  • Shared parental leave – up to 50 weeks of leave (paid and unpaid)
  • Paternity leave – 2 weeks of leave
  • Adoption leave – up to 52 weeks of adoption leave (paid and unpaid)

We have 4 roles currently available.