Landscapers of the future demonstrated their skills over the past 3 months at regional heats hosted by CAFRE, Gardening Scotland, Myerscough College, Reaseheath College and Pershore College for the WorldSkills UK Landscape Gardening competition.

Horticultural students and apprentices from across the nation took part in the knock-out heats which were run by the Association of Professional Landscapers (APL).

Taking part were competitors from College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise (CAFRE), Dundee and Angus College, Myerscough College, Paxman Landscapes UK Limited, Reaseheath College, Scotland's Rural Colleges, Warwickshire College and Wiltshire College.

We are pleased to announce the 11 competitors that have qualified through to the APL WorldSkills semi-final which will take place at Myerscough College in August this year are:

  • Ryan Bell, Myerscough College
  • Thomas Cartledge, Reaseheath College
  • Josh Dow, Scotland's Rural Colleges
  • Jake Hackett, Warwickshire College
  • Jordan Knox, College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise
  • Adam McGarry, Wiltshire College
  • Daniel McGeoghegan, Myerscough College
  • Liisi Selmet, Reaseheath College
  • Joshua Slater, Reaseheath College
  • Samuel Taylor, Myerscough College
  • Kelvin White, Reaseheath College

The competitors had three tasks to complete at the heats. These were completed over the course of a day in timed sessions and were marked on the quality of their work, attention to detail and work practice including health and safety by an experienced APL representative. Tasks included building a decked timber frame within two hours, followed by a block paving exercise to specification, finishing off with the introduction of a plant identification test where competitors were asked to name the genus and the species of 20 plants selected from a catalogue of 60 plants. All marked against some very exact scoring sheets and where appropriate millimetre tolerances.

The competitors will go to Myerscough College for the national semi-final. This year the three days will see our semi-finalists take part in industry led training sessions alongside building test pieces. The test pieces will directly assess the competitors on what they have been taught, which will focus on the latest developments and innovations in the industry.

This year’s national final will once again be held at The Skills Show at the NEC Birmingham from the 15—18 of November.

The APL would like to thank sponsors Green-tech, Makita, Marshals and J A Jones for their continuing support of the WorldSkills Landscaping competition.

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