Working at Swan Lifeline

Working at Swan Lifeline involves being outside in all weather conditions and at all times of year, therefore awareness of the following information plus common sense, will help you understand what will be expected of you.

The information contained in the advice is a shorter version of the one that you will be asked to read when you start working with us, however it contains all of the essential facts.


Many parts of Cuckoo Weir Island can become muddy, including both paved and unpaved pathways.

The bridge upon entry to Cuckoo Weir Island

The bridge can become slippery when wet. Care should be taken when crossing the bridge in wet and icy conditions.

The river

Walking or running along the river banks, particularly if they are wet or muddy should always be avoided. Even if dry, some parts of the riverbank can crumble into the river.


The outside pens can become slippery in all weather, appropriate footwear should always be worn.


The edges can be slippery. Care should be taken when near the water’s edge. When the ponds are being emptied, the sloping sides can be slippery and appropriate footwear should be worn.


Pathways and pens are subject to ice in cold weather periods, as is the bridge. Care should be taken when using these areas.


In summer, algae can form on the sides of the pond, and become exposed as the pond is emptied.


Protective gloves should always be worn when using hoses.

Disinfectant and sterilising fluid

This can be dangerous if swallowed and can stain clothing. It is suggested that old clothing should be worn when working at Swan Lifeline.

Heavy items

If you are unsure of how to lift heavy items safely and correctly, please ask a member of staff to show you the correct way of doing this.


Swans will normally back away from you. Hissing is usually a reflex action and does not mean they are about to attack. The exception is an adult swan with cygnets. Do not approach a swan if you are unsure and always ask a member of staff to guide you.