Digital Mapping Intern - Peatland with The Cairngorms National Park Authority

Location: Grantown-on-Spey
£17,618 per year pro rata
Full-Time (37.5 hrs per week) fixed-term contract for 3 months
Immediate Start
Closing date: 14 November 2019, 12 noon

About the Company

The Cairngorms National Park was established in September 2003 and the Cairngorms National Park Authority (CNPA) became fully operational at the same time – taking on the statutory powers necessary to ensure successful and sustainable development of the area.
The CNPA is designed to be an enabling organisation, promoting partnership working, and giving leadership to all those involved in the Cairngorms. The Park Authority does not duplicate the work of other organisations, such as the enterprise agencies or Scottish Natural Heritage, but is here to ensure there is a joined-up approach to projects and initiatives that help to meet the aims of the Park.

With a staff of 67, plus 19 board members, the Park Authority has several statutory duties including managing outdoor access in the Park, planning and development management, the production of a Local Development Plan and the publication of a National Park Partnership Plan.

For more information on the National Park and the CNPA please visit their website

The Role

Peatland ACTION is the project helping to restore damaged peatlands in Scotland. Since 2012 over 19,000 hectares have been put on the road to recovery with funding provided by the Scottish Government. Peatlands in good health are valuable and have many benefits. The Cairngorms National Park Authority has 2 Peatland ACTION Project Officers who work with landowners in the National Park to deliver peatland restoration. The Cairngorms National Park Partnership Plan and Cairngorms Nature Action Plan have a stated aim of 1000 ha of peatland under restoration management in the national park each year.

It is therefore important that the Park Authority have a clear understanding of where the eroding and drained peatland is within the National Park. There are existing datasets relating to peat distribution and habitat type, but the condition of the peatland must be mapped either by site survey or by aerial photography. Once the eroding and drained peatland is mapped there will be a baseline to refer to, future projects can be scoped out more quickly and identified strategically.

The project will be line managed guided on a day-today basis by the CNPA Peatland ACTION Project Officers.

• Systematically analyse aerial photography across the national park to locate eroded peatland
• Create a digital dataset of eroded peatland with associated metadata using ESRI ArcGIS software. Polygons will be created initially at a site level and then grips, bare peat and erosion gullies will be digitised individually.
• Locate and collate existing datasets relating to peatlands in the CNP to compile with new shapefiles into one CNP peatland dataset
• Develop proposals for keeping the data up to date and how the data could be used in the future
• Some field visits will be undertaken but the majority of the work is desk-based

• Produce a digital dataset of peatland in the CNP with associated metadata
• Produce a short summary report of the work with recommendations
• Share the report and recommendations with CNPA staff at the end of the internship via a PowerPoint presentation

Additional Information:
• Cairngorms National Park Partnership Plan 2017 - 2022
• Cairngorms Nature Action Plan 2019-2024


CNPA is looking for an intern with a passion for the Scottish outdoors who has an understanding of the importance of geographical mapping for land management and conservation.

The following skills/experience are deemed essential:

• Experience of GIS systems, creation of accurate spatial datasets, and database management
• Understanding of Scottish upland habitats and land management, in particular, peatlands
• An eye for detail and ability to analyse detailed aerial photography
• Well organised with a systematic approach to work
• Able to work unsupervised and to own initiative
• Excellent communication skills (written and verbal)

If you have any questions about this role or the organisation please contact Please do not under any circumstances contact the employer directly as doing so may negatively impact your employment opportunity.


Closing date for applications is 14 November 2019, 12 noon.

Please submit a CV and tailored Cover Letter through the Adopt An Intern online application form by clicking “Apply” on our website. Examples of what we like to see in a cover letter can be found HERE

All applications must be submitted by 12 noon on the closing date. In your Cover Letter, please state: A) Your availability and B) relevant information on your skills/experience demonstrating how you meet the requirements above.

We do NOT accept email applications unless otherwise stated.

Successful candidates must, by the start of the employment, have permission to work in the UK.