Boating Officer – South Georgia

Job reference:
BAS 20/04
Contract type:
Antarctic Contract - Winter Over (approx. 15 Months)
£24,272 per annum initially. Additionally, upon completion of a successful tour, you will receive a bonus of up to 10%.
We offer generous benefits
British Antarctic Survey
King Edward Point (KEP) research station, South Georgia, South Atlantic.
Closing date:
31 March, 2020 11:59 pm


British Antarctic Survey is offering a unique opportunity as Boating Officer in Antarctica.

What is it about?

We are looking to appoint Boating Officers to run the small boat operations at King Edward Point (KEP) research station on the remote island of South Georgia.

The BAS Boating Officers at KEP station are responsible for the boating operation in support of the boating operation for the Government of South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands. This will include fishery vessel inspections and boating support for government and science projects.
You should have excellent sea-borne skills as a coxswain on both RIBs and jet drive boats, experience in a training role and have good customer liaison skills. Just as importantly the applicants should be experienced in dealing with a wide range of maintenance and repairs on jet driven harbour launches and rigid inflatable boats.

At KEP you will carry out a variety of boating support tasks, these will primarily be passenger and equipment transfers. In addition, you will also provide a local Search & Rescue boating capability, boat crew training and will enable recreational boating opportunities for your colleagues.
Working in sometimes difficult conditions you will get to experience and work amongst the stunning coastal alpine scenery of South Georgia and have the opportunities to observe whales, penguins and seals that inhabit this amazing environment.

If you are an experienced boat handler with a love of the sea and are after a different and truly unforgettable boating job, this could be the role for you.

Who are we?

British Antarctic Survey (BAS) delivers and enables world-leading interdisciplinary research in the Polar Regions. Its skilled science and support staff based in Cambridge, Antarctica and the Arctic, work together to deliver research that uses the Polar Regions to advance our understanding of Earth as a sustainable planet. Through its extensive logistic capability and know how BAS facilitates access for the British and international science community to the UK polar research operation. Numerous national and international collaborations, combined with an excellent infrastructure help sustain a world leading position for the UK in Antarctic affairs. British Antarctic Survey is a component of the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). NERC is part of UK Research and Innovation

We employ experts from many different professions to carry out our Science as well as to keep the lights on, feed the research and support teams and keep everyone safe! If you are looking for an opportunity to work with amazing people in amazing places then British Antarctic Survey could be for you. We aim to attract the best people for those jobs.


To manage, operate and maintain the small boats used in support of the Government of South Georgia & South Sandwich Islands.


RYA Powerboat Instructor and RYA Advanced Powerboat.


  • Day to day management of the boating fleet. The tasking will be related to weather conditions and various priorities in order to support the government and scientific work at KEP research station.
  • Coxswain two 10.5m jet drive harbour launches. These have rigid aluminium hulls and are driven by two Yanmar 315 bhp diesel engines and twin Hamilton jet drives.
  • Coxswain two 5.5m Humber Destroyer RIBs with twin Evinrude 40 bhp engines. These are mainly used for beach landings.
  • Advise the Station Leader and Government Officers on safety issues associated with boating operations.
  • Carry out regular planned maintenance on diesel engines, outboard engines, Hamilton jet drives and checks on boat comms equipment.
  • Carry out minor and major repair work on the boats. This may include various mechanical and electrical repairs on the boat engines and systems, glass fibre hulls and sponson repairs.
  • Instruct and train other station staff through a defined training syllabus. This will be through a series of theoretical and practical exercises including launch & recovery, boat handling skills, seamanship, search & rescue techniques and navigation using GPS, chart plotter and radar.
  • Ensure that boating spares stock take, inventory and orders take place through the AMOS database system.
  • Provide a monthly boating activity and running hours report.
  • Produce an annual KEP station boating report.
  • Assist with revising boating procedures and risk assessments as required by the Station Operations Manager.
  • Assist in general station rotas including cooking/cleaning as required by the Station Leader.

Please quote the following reference for any queries: BAS 20/04
Closing date for receipt of applications form is: 31 March 2020
Interviews are scheduled to be held on: 8 and 9 June 2020

As part of our commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion and promoting equality in careers in science, we hold an Athena SWAN Bronze Award and have an active Equality, Diversity and Inclusion programme of activity. We welcome applications from all sections of the community. People from ethnic minorities and disabled people are currently under-represented and their applications are particularly welcome.
Antarctic deployment involves working in a remote and harsh environment where adaptations to working, living and recreation areas are not achievable to a level that might be expected in the UK. There is a Genuine Occupational Requirement to be physically capable of negotiating rough, icy and snowy terrain as well as being mentally resilient and medically fit.

Skills are listed as either Essential or Desirable. Desirable skills importance rating in parenthesis (1 is high, 5 is low)

Boat maintenance & repair

  • Diesel engine maintenance and repairs. - Essential
  • Outboard engine maintenance. - Essential
  • Inflatable/ GRP repairs. - Essential
  • Hamilton jet drive repairs (Note: a course may be available if not experienced). - Desirable [0]

Communication skills

  • Fluent in written and spoken English language. - Essential
  • Good oral skills especially with regard to radio communications. - Essential
  • Good written skills to produce periodic reports - Essential

Computer / IT skills

  • Microsoft Word - Essential
  • Microsoft Excel - Essential
  • Previous use of databases primarily in a PPM package (i.e. planned preventative maintenance). - Desirable [0]

Interpersonal skills

  • Able to work and live in a remote and isolated community. This involves getting involved in communal tasks such as cleaning and cooking. - Essential
  • Must be a good team player and considerate of others. - Essential
  • Experience of working in a contractor type environment where customer service skills are key. - Essential
  • Ability to understand the needs of scientists and supporting them in their work. - Desirable [0]


  • RYA Powerboat Instructor - Essential
  • RYA Advanced Powerboat - Essential
  • STCW 95 - Desirable [0]
  • GMDSS General Operators Certificate (GOC). - Desirable [0]

Resource Management ability

  • Use boats in a cost–effective manner that reduces mechanical wear and tear and gives due consideration to reducing fuel consumption. - Essential
  • Management of indented spares and stores and participation in advising on future boating part purchases. - Essential

Skills / Experience

  • Extensive small boat handling experience in coastal waters in a professional capacity. - Essential
  • Competent navigation skills using manual and electronic methods. - Essential
  • VHF radio communication skills. - Essential
  • Ability to work unsupervised and be self-driven. - Essential
  • To have sound judgement of prevailing sea & weather conditions. Ability to convey confident and conservative decisions based on these assessments. - Essential
  • * Able to plan and deliver boating operations in a safe and efficient manner. - Essential
  • Training of other boat users to coxswain and crew member standards. - Essential
  • Experience of transferring people at sea from vessel to vessel through the use of pilot ladders. - Desirable [0]
  • Experience in delivering boat safety briefs to boat crew and passengers. - Desirable [0]
  • Knowledge and initiative to develop the efficiency of the boating operation. - Desirable [0]

You can apply for this job online or you can print off the application forms, fill them out by hand and mail them.

Apply Online:

Apply by post:

If you would like to apply for this job but cannot apply online, you can print the application form(s) and post it back to us.

Please ensure you complete all required sections of the application form(s) and include a Cover Letter and a copy of your CV.

When posting your application, ensure there is sufficient postage.

These forms are in an OpenDocument format and may not be suitable for users of assistive technology. An accessible format may be requested by contacting us.

Send your completed application forms to:
Human Resources Team
British Antarctic Survey
High Cross, Madingley Road
United Kingdom

If you need more information

Email: [email protected]
Telephone: +44 (0)1223 221400
Facsimile: +44 (0)1223 362616

The information you provide during the application process will only be used for the purpose of progressing your application, to fulfil legal or regulatory requirements where necessary or, in the case of the Equal Opportunities Monitoring Questionnaire, to help BAS meet its equal opportunities policy.

The British Antarctic Survey will not share the information you provide with any third parties, and the information will be held securely by the British Antarctic Survey whether the information is in electronic or physical format. Please note that the Equal Opportunities Monitoring Questionnaire will be detached from your application prior to the short-listing of candidates for interview.

Unsuccessful applications will be securely destroyed 6 months after the end of the recruitment process (or 1 year after the end of the recruitment process in the case of Marine Staff and AEP. The applications of successful applicants will be retained as part of their personnel file.

Further information can be found in the information notice of NERC, our parent body.