The Association of Professional Landscapers (APL) is now inviting entries into the 2014 WorldSkillsUK Landscape Gardening competition.
The entry portal is open from February 10 and closes on March 21.
The APL is the new organising partner for the Landscape Gardening section of the WorldSkills UK competition which is part of a set of over 70 UK wide skills competitions ranging from landscape gardening to engineering, electronics to the arts; all of which are designed by industry experts and targeted at apprentices, college and university students, trainees and employees.
The Landscape Gardening competition is open to all students and apprentices that are studying for either a Level 2 or Level 3 S/NVQ qualification in a relevant horticultural subject.
The competition will feature a theory test and a heat which will take the form of building competition gardens at RHS Flower Show Tatton Park 2014, the winners going on to an international Olympics-style event at The Skills Show at the Birmingham NEC where finalists compete to be named the ‘Best in the UK’.
Judges for the Landscape Gardening competition include award winning APL Chairman, Mark Gregory who has over 120 show gardens to his name and garden designer and four times RHS gold medal winner Adam Frost.
They will be joined by technical lead Jody Lidgard, who has run his own landscaping firm for over 18 years, lectured at various colleges around the country and mentored students through past WorldSkillsUK competitions. 2011 WorldSkillsUK medal winner Simon Abbott completes the judges’ line up, having also won medals at RHS Malvern and RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show. Simon has experience in such events where he has helped with design, briefing and judging these gardens to a high standard and training to the high standard that he himself has achieved.
The aim of the competition is to inspire young people and adults to be ambitious in their pursuit of skills to the highest level. Entering the competitions is proven to catapult a person’s career, build on their skills, test their knowledge against their peers in industry and showcase their potential to employers.
Mark Gregory said: “As Chairman of The APL, I am excited about the collaboration with WorldSkillsUK and working with the young professionals during the competition starting this year. I feel I have a lot to give and share with this new generation of landscapers and I am looking forward to being part of it. It does wonders for your career and is the best hands on learning you can get in the industry so I encourage all to enter.”
Theo Paphitis, patron of The Skills Show said: “The WorldSkills UK Competitions showcase and celebrate the high levels of talent entering the UK’s workforce. They reward real talent and I hope this will show everyone how apprenticeships and vocational training can lead to worthwhile careers.
“If you or anyone you know has what it takes to become the best in their industry, then please encourage them to get involved.”
Outstanding national finalists from this year’s WorldSkills UK National Competition Cycle, who meet the qualifying criteria, could be selected for a once in a lifetime opportunity to represent the UK in their chosen skill at the international WorldSkills Competition.
So what are you waiting for, have you got what it takes to be the best?