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Estates & ancillary

Most hospitals today consist of multiple buildings and extensive grounds and maintaining them is an ongoing challenge. For this we depend on an estates team doing many different jobs, such as gardening, painting and maintaining equipment, but working together. Everyone values safe, attractive surroundings. Patients enjoy a bright, welcoming environment and it can have a positive impact on their well-being and recovery. Doctors and other healthcare staff also need the right working surroundings in order to do their best for their patients.

Roles in this area include:

Building workers

Skilled building workers employed by the NHS include bricklayers, carpenters, painters and tilers. You might work on interior and exterior maintenance of buildings within the trust, or be employed in the construction of new buildings.


As a caretaker you have a range of key responsibilities. These might include disposing of clinical and other waste, moving furniture and equipment as needed, supervising car parks and helping the skilled maintenance team with their work.


As an electrician in the NHS you might be involved in a major construction project. You will also maintain and repair existing systems and equipment, including complicated lifesaving machinery.

Estate managers

Estates managers are responsible for all aspects of the maintenance of hospital buildings, machinery and grounds. They manage the staff doing the day-to-day work, such as bricklayers and electricians. In this senior role you will usually have a professional qualification, such as registered architect or chartered engineer.

Estate technicians

Estate technicians test and maintain vital specialist equipment such as sterilisers, fire alarms and intruder alarms. In an emergency, you might be called out to a patient’s home to test or repair an essential medical device.

Gardeners / grounds men and women

Gardeners are employed throughout the NHS. You will help to keep hospital grounds green and attractive for patients, visitors and staff. A hospital garden can be a haven for people, particularly at times of sadness or anxiety. You might also be involved in heavy landscape work.


As a key member of the skilled construction team, you might install plumbing and heating systems into new buildings in one of the NHS’s many construction projects. You’ll also help maintain and repair existing systems and equipment, working under the direction of the maintenance or estates manager.

Window cleaners

Window cleaners work in every part of the NHS. As part of the maintenance team, you will play an important role in helping to keep hospitals clean and attractive for patients, visitors and staff.