Having battled through the WorldSkills UK National Qualifiers, six skilled young apprentices and students have made it through to the final showdown in front of 70,000 spectators at WorldSkills UK Live (formerly The Skills Show) at the NEC in Birmingham (Nov 15-17).

The competitors went to J A Jones and Myerscough College for the final national qualifier where they took part in industry led training sessions alongside building test pieces that directly assessed the competitors on what they have been taught, focused on the latest developments and innovations in the industry.

Over the three days the competitors had tasks to complete including paving, decking, walling and plant ident, procurement and working to a client’s brief.

All the competitors impressed the judges, but we are pleased to announce the six competitors progressing to the finals are:

  • Douglas Beck - Wiltshire College - Lackham
  • Sam Gordon - The Gardenmakers Ltd
  • Brian Hughes - College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise (Ireland)
  • Reece McKay - College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise (Ireland)
  • Connor Pegler - Warwickshire College (Pershore)
  • Matthew Wood - Myerscough College

The eventual victor will be the UK’s No.1 Young Landscaper– and could be eligible for selection to represent the nation at WorldSkills, the largest international skills competition, in Austria 2020/Shanghai 2021.

The APL would like to thank sponsors Ecodek, Makita, Marshalls, J A Jones and Landscapeplus for their support of the APL WorldSkills UK Landscaping competition.

Mike Vickers of J A Jones said of the competition last year, “J A Jones supports the APL WorldSkills competitions to help encourage the students to become the industry leaders of the future, by their education and inspiration through plants.”

David Jessop of Marshalls said last year, “It is imperative that we encourage new blood into the landscape industry and WorldSkills is a fantastic platform for talented young landscapers to showcase their skills. Marshalls is delighted to support WorldSkills once again and we congratulate and look forward to a hotly contested final in November.”

The finalists will be competing at WorldSkills UK Live (formerly The Skills Show) at the NEC in Birmingham (Nov 15-17). To register to come along and see the final competition for yourself, visit https://www.worldskillsuk.org/directions/our-events/worldskills-uk-live/book-worldskills-uk-live

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