Catherine Barber

Ranger, Brimham Rocks

Catherine Barber - Ranger

I knew from an early age that an ‘indoorsy’ job was never going to be for me. Born to environmentally conscious, very ‘outdoorsy’ parents, I was up Snowdon under my own steam by the time I was 4 and sitting inside was rarely an option. Brought up in the Peak District, the nation’s very first National Park was our back garden, and we ‘played out’ whenever we could. My Mum was, and still is, my main inspiration. As a volunteer National Park Ranger she has a passion for the countryside and has always sought to share it through her work in environmental education.

Ranger Catherine shares her passion for conserving the moorland with visitors at Brimham Rocks.

During me degree in Environmental Conservation at Sheffield Hallam University I took a “sandwich year” and spent it volunteering full time with National Trust Rangers in the Peak District, the Kinder/Edale part of the estate. This is where I heard about a training scheme that the Trust offers and managed to secure one of the 10 Academy Ranger posts across the country.

Just before the 2 year mark, I saw the advert for the Ranger role at Brimham and as the timing was right I applied for it.
The ‘class of 2016’ ranger academy students graduated in February, and 8/10 of us are still in the sector, 5/8 of those, still with the Trust, so it does work! 

" I love the variety of the job, how we can do something different every day and how there’s always something new to see or learn no matter how well you think you know nature, it will always surprise you!"
- Catherine Barber

The best thing about being a ranger at Brimham is the Volunteers, no matter what kind of week I’ve had, a session with the volunteers will always put a smile on my face and spur me on to get back to it.

Major plans for Brimham in the future would be the introduction of a grazing programme here to keep the moorland in tip top condition. This is obviously way in the future and will involve a large fencing project and much public consultation before we could even think about what furry friends to have on site!