Horticultural Apprentices Graduate Before Embarking on Career with Council’s Park Services
Adrian Morgan, Anthony Davies, Joshua Thatcher and Magdalena Szczerbinska are the latest students to successfully pass the apprenticeship scheme, securing them full time employment with the Council.
Cabinet Member for Sport, Leisure and Culture, Cllr Ramesh Patel said: “The horticultural apprenticeship scheme continues to be successful and clearly demonstrates the Council’s commitment to training and development, ensuring that there is a succession of skilled staff able to maintain the Councils parks and green spaces to the highest possible standards.
“This graduation ceremony enables us to recognise what is involved in the management and maintenance of our parks and green spaces and what is involved in the apprenticeship scheme. A wide range of skilled disciplines are required and it is not something that you come to understand and learn overnight.
“These four graduates should be extremely proud of themselves and I would like to congratulate them on their hard work and enthusiasm and wish them all the best for their new and exciting careers.”
The depth of knowledge, understanding and practical experience required is reflected in a comprehensive four year training programme, linked to national standards which also goes towards addressing the current skills gap in the industry and contributes to promoting career development.
They have benefited from a diverse range of activities and operations associated with horticulture and their new full time posts will include a full range of amenity horticultural tasks in both parks and public open spaces. They will also have a role within the plant production nurseries and be mentors for future apprentices.
Parks and Green Spaces shape the character of our towns and cities and there is no finer example than Cardiff as we are well blessed in terms of provision and our parks and green spaces make a significant contribution to the economic, social and environmental wellbeing of this City.
Jennifer Stewart, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund Wales, said: “Apprenticeship schemes are so vitally important to equip young people with the practical skills needed to help secure future employment and Adrian, Anthony, Joshua and Magdalena are testament to the success of such schemes. As well as Bute Park, HLF is investing in people through its Skills for the Future programme which is creating work-based training opportunities in a range of heritage settings throughout Wales. There is a severe shortage of skilled people, especially young people, to look after our historic landscapes and green spaces. HLF funding is creating opportunities for people, who might not previously have considered working in the heritage sector, to take up these placements and make a lasting difference to the heritage of Wales.”
Derek Cashmore, Lecturer in Horticulture, at Bridgend College’s Pencoed campus said: “The partnership Bridgend College has with Cardiff Council continues to produce quality horticulturalists and the graduates have maintained the highest standards throughout their time with us. They can be proud and deserve all the recognition they get.”
During the course the apprentices also travelled to Nantes, Cardiff’s twin city, as part of a three week work exchange placement funded by the European Leonardo da Vinci Programme. The trip enabled them to gain new skills and experiences which they could bring back and implement in Cardiff.
New apprentices will be recruited in the next financial year. For more information about Cardiff Council Park Services please visit www.cardiff.gov.uk/parks