Horticulture trainees shortlisted for Lantra Scotland’s ALBAS 23

Horticulture trainees Shannon Leask and Brodie Linklater have been short-listed for Lantra Scotland’s Awards for Land-based and Aquaculture Skills (the ALBAS), which will take place on Thursday 9 March at the Doubletree by Hilton Hotel Dunblane Hydro.

Shannon is from Quarff in Shetland and has been doing an SVQ in Horticulture through SRUC Elmwood, while working as a garden centre assistant at Plantiecrub Garden Centre in Shetland.

She said: “I started working at Plantiecrub on a Saturday when I was still at school. My favourite subject was Biology so my work at Plantiecrub really ticked all the boxes. Working outdoors has given me a real appreciation for plants and I have enjoyed learning how they grow and how important they are to our planet.”

Brodie from Aberlour in Moray has been doing a Modern Apprenticeship in Horticulture through UHI Moray, while working as an apprentice gardener at The Macallan Distillery in Aberlour.

She said: “Gardening started off as a hobby, passed onto me through my mum. I have a keen interest in all thing’s nature and I always knew I wanted to work outdoors. When I saw my current job advertised, I jumped at the chance to apply. Many people would love their hobby to be their day job so I feel lucky that this is the case for me.”

Lantra Scotland is a charity which works to increase the number and diversity of employees in the land-based, aquaculture and environmental conservation sector, and drive their skills development.

The ALBAS play a vital role in promoting careers within the rural sector, celebrating the achievements of learners and highlighting the importance to employers of investing in skills.

Host for the evening will be sheep farmer Cammy Wilson from Ayrshire, who also runs popular YouTube channel The Sheep Game.

Industry categories at this year’s ALBAS cover agriculture, aquaculture, equine, game and wildlife, horticulture, land-based engineering and trees and timber.

As well as prizes for Overall Winner, Runner-up and Modern Apprentice of the Year, there are also prizes for Higher Education, School Pupil and Secondary Schools, CARAS (Council for Awards of Agricultural Societies), a Mentor award for inspirational tutor, the Tam Tod Trophy and the Anna Murray Award for Partnership Working.

Finalists for ALBAS 2023 were selected by an independent judging panel made up of influential figures from across the land-based and aquaculture sector, chaired by Keith Paterson of Forestry and Land Scotland.

Liz Barron-Majerik, director of Lantra Scotland commented:

“We are all very proud of the role that the ALBAS play in highlighting the achievements of new entrants and career changers in our sector, and in showing people the benefits of skills development and partnership working.

I’d especially like to congratulate this year’s finalists who are going through to the ALBAS ceremony in March and wish them good luck, but would also like to say well done to everyone who was nominated, as that in itself is worthy of recognition.

We are also very grateful to the independent panel of industry figures who do the judging, to training providers and employers who submit the nominations, and of course to all of our generous supporters who make our event possible”.

Tickets for the evening are available from Lantra Scotland on 01738 310164 or

Lantra’s work in Scotland is supported by the Scottish Government.

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