THEY carry no salary, but the 19 jobs posted this week by the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority are expected to attract stiff competition.
The new Dales Volunteers, the first to be recruited for three years, will be put to work surveying and carrying out minor repairs to paths and other rights of way in the Craven, Richmondshire and Cumbrian sections of the park.
An aptitude for practical work and an understanding of drystone walling is among the requirement for some of the posts.
Applicants must live within 40 miles of the park boundary and be prepared to submit to a shortlist, which officials are preparing to draw up because of the expected high demand.
Mark Allum, head of access and engagement at the Park Authority, said a keen interest in the countryside remained the main requirement.
“Dales Volunteers are crucial. Last year, they provided invaluable assistance in the rebuilding of Fisherman’s Bridge near Sedbergh, in the parish paths survey, and in the resurfacing of part of the Roman Road near Hawes” he said.
“At the moment we have 166 Dales Volunteers who carry out a wide range of work, from listed buildings surveys to museum research.
“We have given as much detail as we can about the availability requirements in the hope that we can attract people of all ages, including those in full time work. We are also recruiting to specific roles so that we might attract people who have particular skills and interests.”
Six volunteers are being recruited to the southern team, five to the north and eight to the west, in a recruitment campaign that has met with approval from past volunteers.
Dilys Williamson said on the authority’s Facebook page: “My husband and I got more out than we put in.
“It kept us fit and we got to know new parts of the Dales and learnt so much about the countryside and conservation.”