Laboratory Technician - Molecular - Environment Agency

Laboratory Technician – Molecular

Salary – £31,429

Locations – Brampton, Cambridgeshire

Staff Grade – 4

Post Type/ Working Pattern – Full Time, Fixed term 24-month contract

About us:

The National Fisheries Laboratory team is the single point of expertise in identifying, monitoring, and limiting the impact of current and future threats to fisheries and the aquatic environment in England.

Our team is supporting environmental detection and monitoring initiatives across England through a growing portfolio of molecular services to identify fish populations, pathogens and non-native fishes. Our team also deliver post-mortem and laboratory diagnostics (parasitology, bacteriology, histology, molecular, fish ageing) and provide technical advice and guidance to inform our regulation on England’s freshwater fish population.

As part of the Environment Agency, you will play your part in protecting and improving the environment. We are working with government, local councils, businesses, civil society groups and communities to meet the challenges of climate change and make our environment a better place for wildlife and people.

Why Choose Us:

  • Make a real difference: The well-being of fish stocks across England, whether river, lake, or sea, is critical to ensuring the health and balance of the ecosystems within our waterways across the country. Your work will actively contribute to building a more resilient and sustainable environment in which fish can thrive.
  • Professional Growth: The Environment Agency offers opportunities for career advancement and the chance to work on diverse and impactful projects; you’ll gain valuable experience and enhance your skills as part of our dedicated team.
  • Continuous learning: It’s not just your own professional development that will be encouraged. You’ll play a vital role in coordinating the delivery of technical training and mentoring of staff on laboratory testing and reporting procedures.
  • Collaboration and Partnership: Collaborate with experienced professionals in a supportive and inclusive environment, and play a key role where continuous learning, through your coordination and delivery of training and the mentoring of staff ensuring a consistent and professional service.
  • Champion Health, Safety and Wellbeing: Become the champion for and health, safety, and wellbeing (HSW) practices and have a leadership role in promoting a positive HSW culture within the team.
  • Team Environment: Work as part of a close-knit laboratory and office-based team of like-minded individuals who share your passion for the environment. Together, we make a real impact and create a better world for all.
  • Incident Response: Responding to incidents is a central part of what we do. You may be required to have an incident role and make yourself available to respond to incidents or provide business continuity support during an incident. This may attract an additional payment and full training and alternative working arrangements will be available to support you with your incident role. 

What will I do?

You’ll be working with our molecular technical specialist in managing a growing portfolio of work for internal and external customers. You’ll deliver scientific evidence to strengthen our operational and regulatory duties to maintain, improve, and develop freshwater fisheries in England. You’ll also support across our core disciplines to ensure delivery of our services to area operational teams and external fishery customers.

A key focus of your role will be the development and day-to-day operation of our molecular laboratories and will have responsibilities that include overseeing the processing of samples, ensuring quality standards, data analyses, interpretation, reporting, maintaining equipment through the management of service contracts, writing COSHH and Risk Assessments, maintaining laboratory supplies and more. This is a senior role and will require training of staff from diverse backgrounds and working with other senior team members facilitate the smooth delivery of our services.

What do I need?


  • Scientific degree level or equivalent.
  • Knowledge of disease diagnostic principles such as DNA/RNA handling, PCR.
  • A sound scientific knowledge of molecular tools and approaches.

You will also have:

You’ll have experience of leading people and overseeing the day-to-day running of a laboratory. Knowledge of disease diagnostic principles sequencing, freshwater fish diseases and freshwater fisheries monitoring including eDNA is preferable.

And of course, strong team ethic and the ability to work independently and as part of a highly motivated and technical team is a given.

  • Self-motivated, inquisitive, organised, and with excellent attention to detail.
  • Able to prioritise demanding seasonal workloads.
  • Work under pressure to meet varied demands.
  • Comfortable working to tight deadlines and have a clear pragmatic approach to achieving objectives.
  • An excellent communicator at all levels and in various forms, with strong influencing and inter-personal skills.

Where you will work:

The role is office and laboratory based, situated within the National Fisheries Laboratory, Brampton, Cambridgeshire on a 24-month contract (with potential for the role to become permanent). Occasional travel for meetings, events and site visits may be required.

We operate a 9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday service.

What's in it for you?

You’ll benefit from a culture that embraces difference and is inclusive where you’ll feel supported and trusted to do the right thing. We’ll invest in you and allow you to grow and shape your career.

What’s more, you’ll have access to our great benefits package including:

  • A salary of £31,429
  • A generous career average pension scheme
  • Overtime opportunities through standby and incident pay
  • 25 days holiday + 8 bank holidays for full-time employees
  • Great career opportunities
  • Maternity, paternity, and adoption leave scheme

As an organisation we strive to reflect the communities we serve, to achieve this we welcome applications from all backgrounds regardless of race, sexual orientation, and religion. If you have any questions regarding the vacancy or application process, please contact the recruitment team at [email protected].

Don't miss this opportunity to be part of the UK's biggest environmental organisation. Join us, and together, let's tackle the challenges of a changing climate and build a more sustainable future. Apply now and embark on a rewarding and fulfilling career journey with the Environment Agency!

Closing date for applications: Monday 26th February 2024

Interviews will be held week commencing 5th March 2024