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Lewin Nicholas, Estates Manager

Over the next couple of weeks, we will be doing a few features on our Management Team at Combe Grove. First up is Lewin from our wonderful Estates Team!

How long have you been working at Combe Grove?

Since 2017.

What is the most rewarding thing about your job?

Lots of thing are rewarding about this job. It’s a big responsibility looking after the land and all the wildlife that depends on it. What’s great though is that I have been entrusted and given the freedom to actively contribute to its health and vitality, ensuring its longevity and ensuring it can support us in our own health and wellbeing. We are living at a time where land and the ecosystem services it provides needs to be nurtured and cared for more than ever.

I find it very satisfying working on the land, being in it and outside, being involved in the seasons and feeling the weather, comfortable and uncomfortable. Observing wildlife and making new discoveries, learning about plants, animals and their complex interactions – it’s fascinating!

I’m very creative too and get to exercise my creativity through designing plant schemes, setting up systems and generally designing how the whole site can be utilised to provide a mosaic of habitat and producing yields for our consumption.

Can you tell us a little bit about your working history here?

I started on the 1st of December 2017 and set out by establishing and understanding my brief and learning the context of Combe Grove. This serves as the foundation for design and planning which still continues to this day as we begin to get the project off the ground.

As well as planning and design the grounds have been maintained and management plans for areas written and implemented. I have also formed a team to help achieve our objectives and implemented systems for working, established a workshop, compiled tools and equipment and ensured we comply to current legislation for health and safety.

I have also organised the Green Team to help improve our environmental performance across Combe Grove.

Why Combe Grove?

I found out about the job through Isabel who already worked here. It sounded like my dream job and what I had been working towards, so I went for the interview. The aims of the charity and Helens vision for Combe Grove resonated with my values and beliefs so it was perfect.

When not at Combe Grove, how do you spend your time?

Relaxing and recovering from work mostly! I also like to visit other gardens, estates and projects around the country to see what they are getting up to. But most all, spending time with my family.

Are there any unusual facts about yourself?

From the age of 5-7 I went to an all girls convent school. There were only 5 boys at the school so I wasn’t completely alone!