General Manager

Key Details 

Hours: Full time 40 hours per week with options for flexible working. 

Occasional weekend and evening working 

Salary range: c£35,000 plus benefits including pension 

Location: Deen City Farm and Riding School, Merton, SW19 

This post is subject to an enhanced DBS check 

Purpose of the Role 

Deen City Farm and Riding School is a successful community resource comprising a city farm, riding school and garden project based in the London Borough of Merton. Our mission is to be an oasis providing urban communities with the opportunity to connect with animals and nature. Our founding charitable objectives include promoting education in agriculture, horticulture, home-crafts, country life and animal care and providing facilities for members of our local communities, in particular those considered the most vulnerable. 

We are now seeking to recruit a General Manager. Reporting directly to the Board of Trustees, the General Manager will provide leadership to the organisation. The successful candidate will: 

• Oversee day to day operations. 

• Ensure that the farm meets its objectives in line with its mission, governing documents, funder requirements and legal obligations. 

• Provide strategic direction and management to our managers, staff and volunteers. 

• Work with the Board to formulate the strategy for delivering on the mission. 

A key priority for this role will be to work closely with the board and management team to develop and deliver innovative business, fundraising and communication/publicity strategies and work to ensure the long-term sustainability of the farm. A positive attitude, ability to identify imaginative and productive ways of utilising the farm’s many assets, and the drive to deliver on those plans will be essential as the farm moves towards one of the most challenging and potentially exciting periods in its history. 

Main Duties and Responsibilities 

Strategic Planning 

• Work closely with the Chair, Vice Chair and Board of trustees to develop a strategy for the farm. 

• In collaboration with the wider team, create an annual business plan ensuring that it reflects the strategy of the charity. 

• Monitor progress against the business plan, ensuring its aims are met. 

Leadership and Business Management 

• Provide visible leadership to the farm team inspiring, motivating, developing and managing staff within a culture of continuously improving performance. 

• Day to day responsibility to ensure that the farm meets its objectives in line with its mission, governing documents, funder requirements and legal and regulatory obligations. 

• Ensuring timely and appropriate reporting in place to the board of trustees across all departments and projects. 

• Ensure high-quality, customer focussed and constant service provision in all department areas. 

• Oversee IT, database and website management including e-commerce functions, web applications and social media. 

• Devise budgets and manage finance systems and procedures to ensure the organisation’s financial stability and development including meeting Charity Commission requirements. 

• Manage the farm’s HR functions ensuring appropriate performance and people management and training and development to support a high performing and motivated workforce.

• Lead the planning function across the organisation and ensure it operates effective processes, linked to strategy, business plans and financial considerations. 

Operational Management 

• Responsibility for all aspects of operational and site management. 

• Ensure that managers implement appropriate routines to manage day-to-day functions of the overall organisation. 

• Monitor, measure and report on all operational issues, business plans and strategies within agreed formats and timescales. 

Fundraising, Income Generation, Marketing and Communications and External Relations 

• Lead on developing and overseeing delivery of effective communication, marketing and income generation strategies and activities. 

• Design and manage approaches to funding bodies to meet grant-giving criteria and ensure effective and timely monitoring and reporting to funders. 

• Seek new funding opportunities to enable the development of new services and the sustainability of existing service provision. 

• Lead on the development of new income generation ideas and initiatives, maintaining existing partner relations, whilst seeking new opportunities. 

• To represent the farm in local, regional and national forums and networks to identify opportunities and innovative best practice. 

• Manage relationships and promote the farm’s interests with key voluntary, community and statutory partners including voluntary sector infrastructure and industry umbrella and regulatory organisations. 

Governance & Compliance 

• Ensure that the Farm’s suite of policies across all functions and service areas are up to date and reviewed in response to changing legislation and best practice requirements. 

• Manage business administrative matters, e.g. annual returns, independent accounting inspection. 

• Overall responsibility for health & safety compliance and policy implementation. 

• Develop the organisation’s approach to introducing energy and cost saving green technologies. 

Other Responsibilities 

• Any other relevant duties commensurate with the role. 

Person Specification 

Education, Training and Work Qualifications 


• Degree or equivalent experience. 

• Evidence of continuous training and personal development. 


• Animal, horticultural or Equine Science qualification. 

• Business Management qualification. 

• CIPD qualification. 

• Clean driving licence. 

Closing Date:

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