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Port of London Authority






One month ago

Closing date:

30 April 2025

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Port of London Authority
Vacancy Advert

Job title: Trainee Marine Pilot

Hours: Full Time

Department: Pilotage 

Starting Salary: £60,000-£65,000. 

Base: Gravesend 

Recruitment: Applications are welcome continuously throughout the year.

Who we are:

The Port of London Authority is the statutory harbour authority for the tidal Thames and responsible for 95 miles of the River Thames from the Estuary to Teddington Lock in West London. We work to keep river users safe, protect and enhance the environment and promote the use of the river for trade and travel. 

Our Pilotage Department operates seamlessly to ensure the safe and efficient navigation of vessels through a variety of waterways. The Pilotage Administration team manages logistics and schedules, ensuring experienced pilots are available when needed. River Pilotage Operations handles the intricate manoeuvring of vessels through complex river routes, while Sea Pilotage Operations specialises in open water navigation. Our Trainee Pilots program prepares individuals for the challenging role of guiding vessels, offering rigorous training for future pilots. Together, we work cohesively to guarantee the safe passage of vessels and uphold our commitment to maritime safety.

The role:

The role of a Pilot with the Port of London Authority involves guiding vessels along 95 miles of the Thames River, from central London to the North Sea. Pilots navigate various types of ships, including container ships, tankers, warships, and cruise ships, ensuring their safe passage in and out of the tidal Thames. Operating 24/7, 365 days a year, Pilots work in challenging conditions to keep trade and visitors flowing on the iconic river. Motivated mariners are sought to join the team, with rigorous training provided to acquire the necessary skills. Health, safety, wellbeing, customer service, and professionalism are top priorities for the Port of London Authority.

Candidates will train for 28 weeks, including 3 oral examinations and a practical Assessment to qualify as a full time Class 4 Pilot.

More information can be found here

Minimum Requirements

To apply to be a Port of London Authority Pilot you must:

  • Be eligible to work in the UK – Find out more about eligibility.
  • Hold a STCW II/2 master’s Unlimited Certificate of Competency, or have achieved this by the time of training commencement if successful (Evidence of Notice of Eligibility will be required)
  • Hold an unrestricted ENG1 medical certificate (or equivalent)
  • Hold a full current driving license.
  • Be an excellent communicator and fluent in English, when using VHF.
  • Have good spatial awareness.
  • Be decisive and able to act confidently.
  • Be a team player with good I.T. skills.
  • Desirable Skills
  • Experience of tug operations (berthing & unberthing)
  • Experience of working aboard a variety of commercial vessels
  • Knowledge of the Port Marine Safety Code
  • Local knowledge of the river Thames

These skills are desirable; however, training will be provided for the right candidate.

Key Accountabilities

Some of the key accountabilities of our Pilots:

  • Providing clear navigational advice and information on regulatory requirements to vessel masters
  • Supporting vessel masters in their communication with personnel and other vessels
  • Conduct of navigation and bridge management duties
  • Recording and submitting passage plans
  • Coordinating tug activity
  • Upholding the reputation of the Port of London Authority in the delivery of safe operations and excellent customer service

In return, we offer a competitive benefits package:

  • 30 days annual leave 
  • Private Medical Insurance 
  • Generous pension
  • Onsite parking with electric charging
  • Access to Occupational Health, Mindfulness, Counselling and Physiotherapy 
  • Cycle to Work Scheme
  • Access to MyGymDiscounts 

For further information about the role, please email 

Apply for this job

Applications are welcome continuously throughout the year

Apply now

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