Top 10 unusual jobs in Britain

    Raven Master Chris Skaife with raven Rocky. © HRP

    Ben Harrow

    Discover the most unusual jobs in Britain with raven master, swan marker and tea tester all making the top 10.

    The most bizarre roles in Britain, many of which have existed for hundreds of years, emerged following research into the weird and wonderful nature of modern employment in the country. The list of odd jobs include beefeaters, wing walkers, actors at the London Dungeon and the Queen’s piper.

After unearthing the strange occupations, the research team put the list to a panel of 2,000 adults to discover the top 10 most unusual.
The Raven Master, whose principle responsibility is to care for the Tower of London’s eight resident ravens, was adjudged to be Britain’s most unusual job.

Also featured in the top five unique professions were the London Dungeons actor (36%), the Queen’s Swan Marker (29%), Professional Wing walker (27%) and the Queen’s Piper (21%).

David Barber was appointed the Swan Marker in 1993 and is responsible for all of the swans throughout the UK, where the Queen exercises her prerogative right.

He organises the annual event of Swan Upping on the River Thames – his other duties include educating young people and working with other organisations to monitor the health of the swan population.

The study was commissioned by Britain’s leading factual channel Yesterday to mark the launch of the new and exclusive series, Secrets of Britain, Wednesdays at 9pm from 14th May.

The programme takes a quintessential look at the UK’s heritage and life, with each episode featuring a different iconic British institution, including the Tower of London, London Underground and Her Majesty’s Secret Service.


1 Raven Master

    2 London Dungeons Actor

    3 Swan Marker

    4 Professional Wing Walker

    5 Queens Piper

    6 Professional tea taster

    7 Crown Jeweller

    8 Window cleaner for the Gherkin

    9 Beefeater

    10 Intelligence Officer for MI5


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