The Leckford Estate was purchased by John Spedan Lewis (the founder of the Partnership) in 1928 as his private estate, converted into a limited company in 1929 and is now part of the John Lewis Partnership. In August 2001 the Leckford Estate became part of Waitrose & Partners, providing a real focus for it to produce food for the Partnership’s food stores under the Leckford brand.
Located in the heart of rural Hampshire, Leckford Estate is an area of outstanding beauty and only 25 minutes from the New Forest. Join us and you’ll enjoy a remarkable and unrivalled working environment and setting.
Explore Leckford and the different roles available in our interactive video:
The Leckford Estate currently works across the following business units: Farming, Food Processing, Retail, Leisure and Events, Property Services and the Estate Office. Find out more about each of the area using the drop-downs below.
Partners are responsible for growing 550 hectares of combinable crops on an annual cycle using a combination of plough-based and non-inversion tillage systems. There is also a long history of dairy production on the Estate. In 2007, the two existing Holstein Friesian herds were combined with a further 200 bought-in cows to give a single herd of 600 cows in the newly built Abbotts Manor dairy complex, which lead to us expanding our team.
The Fruit Farm encompasses the 4.7 hectare vineyard planted in 2009, with the first harvest taken in 2011 (4 tonnes making 2,500 bottles of sparkling wine). While our Mushroom Farm produces around 26 tonnes of mushrooms weekly from a 6 week cycle and are sold virtually exclusively (as pre-pack and loose) to Waitrose & Partners. The Mushroom Farm employs around 55 Partners. We also have a team of Partners who support the Estate in the areas of farm and quality assurance, food hygiene, water quality, etc.
Discover more about some of our Farm and Food Processing roles below.
As a Herdsperson, you’ll become an essential part of our team by managing the day-to-day dairy operations. With an extensive history of dairy production at the Estate, this is a vital area where you’ll provide support. This involves handling herd health and welfare issues, ensuring animals are well nourished, and assisting with the production of feed crops for the livestock.
The role of a Packhouse Operative is to quality check mushrooms for our Waitrose & Partners stores. This includes storing, packing and dispatching mushrooms grown on the farm to meet the highest standards of Waitrose & Partners. You’ll be a key component in our wider team who are responsible for supplying the finest quality mushrooms to our supermarkets.
We have opportunities for Mushroom Farm Operatives and Mushroom Farm Harvesters to join our team. In a Mushroom Farm Operative role, you’ll provide support to the Mushroom Harvesting team by preparing the growing mushrooms for harvesting, keeping the harvesters supplied with trays, removing waste materials and ensuring the work area is always clean and tidy.
As a Mushroom Farm Harvester, you’ll be responsible for hand-harvesting mushrooms while being guided by your Team Leader. In addition, you’ll ensure optimal picking rates, punnet and tray weights, mushroom quality and presentation. You’ll work effectively with other Partners to supply high quality mushrooms for Waitrose & Partners.
What training will I receive?
We reward Partners who invest time and energy into us by investing in training and development programmes. This includes areas such as food safety and hygiene to help expand the knowledge of our people. We also have mentoring and coaching schemes in place so that everyone receives one-to-one support.
Selling Assistants are the friendly faces of our Farm Shop. In this role, you’ll actively engage with our customers and deliver a first-class customer experience. We’re known for our exemplary customer service both in our stores and supermarkets, so you’ll help to uphold this customer service reputation.
Our Catering Partners are talented, hands-on and highly creative. Join this team and you’ll help to create menus from Waitrose & Partners produce and meet the standards for outstanding food. Due to the nature of this role, you should be able to apply the highest levels of food safety and hygiene in everything that you do.
Chefs within our Café are focused on exceeding the expectations of our customers. You’ll lead the food production operation, giving you the opportunity to motivate the team to deliver top quality food and show your passion for cooking. Working with other Partners in your team, you’ll utilise the produce found on the Estate and from our local and regional suppliers.
Much of the plants and shrubs we grow around the nursery are examples of what we sell and so visitors can see their full potential. Our wide range of stock includes shrubs, climbers, perennials and aquatics. As a Nursery Specialist, you’ll drive sales and profitability by providing excellent customer service.
What training will I receive?
We offer nationally recognised qualifications from the Royal Horticultural Society for Partners who cultivate and maintain water gardens and extensive fishing areas. You’ll also be able to expand your knowledge and skillset through online learning so you can take control of your own career path.
Find out more about Leckford Estate’s Farm Shop & Café and Nursery.
Over at our Longstock Park Water Garden, which was designed and built by John Spedan Lewis, our Gardeners are responsible for maintaining this amenity. This garden was recently voted one of the best 100 gardens in the world. Discover more about the Leisure roles we offer below.
As an Assistant Greenkeeper, you’ll be in charge of maintaining the fairway, preparing cricket wickets and scarifying and aerating turf. Although this role does require technical knowledge and skill, we provide all Partners with training, support and hands-on learning so that everyone can flourish at the Partnership.
Assistant Riverkeepers are responsible for maintaining the river, fish farm duties, as well as mowing and strimming. We’ll expect you to be a team player, have a passion for this line of work, and be able to manage your setting sensitively.
Our Gardeners are involved with garden maintenance, garden development and hosting a range of visitors. This is a hands-on role that is suitable for individuals who enjoy being outdoors and can contribute to the overall wellbeing and presentation of our beautiful garden.
Find out more about Leckford Estate’s Water Garden, Golf Club and Fishing.
Not only will you get to work in a beautiful location, you’ll be given the chance to take on new responsibilities within the Estate should you choose to. We provide clear pathways for upskilling team members, from national qualifications and apprenticeship schemes to mentoring and online learning. Opportunities are vast and diverse, which means if you would prefer to work in other parts of the organisation or at John Lewis & Partners then you are able to do so.
We’ll support you throughout your time with us, whether it’s putting on a health and safety week or promoting mental health awareness for all Partners. In addition, we offer one of the most competitive benefits packages in the industry. You could enjoy a generous annual bonus, subsidised tickets on leisure activities and discount in both John Lewis & Partners and Waitrose & Partners stores.
You’ll find a wide range of full and part-time, temporary and permanent Leckford Estate vacancies available throughout the UK.
See our latest Leckford Estate opportunities at Waitrose & Partners below. Apply now to join us.
See our current Leckford Estate jobs
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