“We cover parts of the Estate which the public can access along with the commercial buildings which includes Cowdray House, Golf Club, The Walled Garden, Cowdray Ruins, Estate Office, Polo Office, Cowdray Hall and many more. The sheer scale of the 16,000-acre Estate presents its challenges, but also means the job is always varied.”
Stephen Chenier, Security Operative
Can you describe what your job as Security Operative involves?
My role as a Security Operative involves patrolling the Estate, checking and securing buildings alongside traffic management for emergencies or other incidents which take place on the Estate. I work with three other members of the team; however, I also take on more of the compliance side of things. This includes the fire alarm testing, meter reading, fire extinguisher checks among others as well as helping the Estate stay compliant by performing PAT tests and carrying out risk assessments.
I have quite a lot to get on with!
How did you find yourself in Security?
In the Summer of 2006, I started working for the British Embassy in Kazakhstan and the following summer in the Uzbekistan Embassy. When I moved back to the UK I worked in hospitality in the North of England where I met my wife, Maria. After a few years, we decided to move to Midhurst and left the hospitality world behind.
I got a job locally prior to the Security Lead at Cowdray reaching out to me and asking if I was interested in joining the Estate’s security team, which I was keen to do as I have been interested in security my whole life. I’ve been here since 2016.
What is your favourite job on the Estate as part of your role?
My favourite part of the job is the compliance side of my role.
How many venues and areas of the Estate do you cover?
We cover parts of the Estate which the public can access along with the commercial buildings which includes Cowdray House, Golf Club, The Walled Garden, Cowdray Ruins, Estate Office, Polo Office, Cowdray Hall and many more. The sheer scale of the 16,000-acre Estate presents its challenges, but also means the job is always varied.
What is it like patrolling at night? Do you come across many animals?
It can be very tiring on the eyes and its quite solitary as there is no one to talk to, but at night I do come across a multitude of animals including deer, owls, badgers, foxes, rabbits and even buzzards.
What do you like most about working on Cowdray Estate?
I would say the variety: there is so much going on from hospitality to sporting events. Cowdray has something for everyone, and I love being part of it.
What is your favourite part of the estate and why?
My favourite part of the Estate is Cowdray House. It’s a great place to walk around and is magical at night.
What do you do to relax when away from work?
I normally watch football or relax on the computer. Sometimes I even spend time with my wife and kids!
Tell us an interesting fact.
I was christened in the Chapel Royal in the Tower of London, and subsequently I have the right to get married in any Royal Chapel in the UK. I’m already married, but we could have got married in Westminster Abbey like William and Kate!
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