The heats took place in the summer for the Association of Professional Landscapers (APL) WorldSkills Landscaping competition and now we have the winners – announced at WorldSkills UK LIVE which took place in November at the NEC Birmingham.
Gold went to Nick Bundy of Gadd Brothers Trees and Landscapes, and Jamie Franklin, Wiltshire College – Lackham, took home the Silver, with Marc Brown from College of Agriculture, Food & Rural Enterprise (CAFRE) taking the Bronze.
The first of four days was a training and familiarisation day, then the competitors had 16 hours to individually build a garden from scratch designed Holly Youde, Urban Landscape Design.
During the final competitors were marked on elements such as paving provided by Marshalls, planting with plants provided by J A Jones, lighting provided by Landscapeplus, health and safety and the overall appearance of the garden. The final also included a plant ident created by North West based nurseries J A Jones, designed to test the competitors plant knowledge.
Judges for the competition included Head Judge and APL General Manager Phil Tremayne, Steve Smith of Shore Landscapes, and 2011 WorldSkills UK Silver medal winner and International training manager, Simon Abbott.
The APL also hosted the Horticulture Inclusive Skills competition on the Saturday of the show, won by David Jones, Pembrokeshire College. Kevin Stubbs took silver, and Dean Roberts took bronze, both from Highbury College, Portsmouth. Inclusive Skills Competitions enable young people with learning difficulties and disabilities to showcase their work skills and growing independence. The competitors were tasked with preparing and planting a raised border, which was then judged by Head Judge Nick Atkinson of Oldham College and Lee Price of Myerscough College, and sponsored by J A Jones.
The APL would like to thank sponsors Dickies, GroundsCare Products, J A Jones, Landscapeplus, Makita and Marshalls for their support of the competition, without whom this would not be possible.
APL WorldSkills UK 2020 opens for entries in March, but you can register your interest now at https://www.worldskillsuk.org/champions/national-skills-competitions/express-your-interest-in-worldskills-uk-competitions-2020
For more information about the WorldSkills UK and what they do, visit https://www.worldskillsuk.org/