Jacob Botting wins Gold at APL WorldSkills UK Final

Winner Botting (centre) "The competition has been stressful but thoroughly enjoyable"
Winner Botting (centre) "The competition has been stressful but thoroughly enjoyable"

Jacob Botting of Myerscough College has been announced as ‘Best in the UK’ in landscaping after winning gold at the Association of Professional Landscapers (APL) WorldSkills UK final.

Ross Conquest of Conquest Hard Landscaping took silver, and, Aaron Byrne of Reaseheath College took bronze.

The APL WorldSkills final took place last week from 17 to 19 November at WorldSkills UK held at the NEC, Birmingham, which attracted more than 100,000 visitors per day.

The seven competitors had 16 hours over four days to build a garden designed by head judge and technical lead Jody Lidgard, who said: "It’s great to see new talent coming forward and competing in what is a very realistic and intense environment."

Bottling said "The competition has been stressful but thoroughly enjoyable. It's not just about saying you can do it, it's about proving you can do it." 

Byrne described WorldSkills as "a good, equal competition. It's tough and hard work but it's worth it. I try to plan my day out as much as possible so I know exactly how much time I have to do everything in." 

Having competed in heat stages in May and the semi-finals at RHS Tatton Park Flower show in July, the final seven had proven their skills to the judges to be in the running for the title of ‘Best in the UK’ at the Skills Show.

During the final they were marked on elements such as block paving, recessed drain covers, timberwork, which included decking and fencing, planting, health and safety and the overall appearance throughout the three days. The finalists were also tested on their knowledge to name ten of the plants that were included in the gardens.

Overall, this year’s finalists included Jacob Botting from Myerscough College, Aaron Byrne from Reaseheath College, Ross Conquest from Conquest Hard Landscaping, Josh Dow from SRUC Oatridge, Jonathan Long and Shea McFerren from CAFRE and Christopher Page from Dundee and Angus College.

Other judges were APL Member Steve Smith of Shore Landscape, and 2011 WorldSkillsUK Silver medal winner, Simon Abbott, who will also take over the role of UK training expert next year for the International WorldSkills competition.

He said: "The show went really well and the work was of a very high standard, some very clean and sharp plots."

APL WorldSkills UK 2017 opens for entries March 2017. For more information, visit www.landscaper.org.uk or contact Lara Rixon at lara.rixon@hta.org.uk

APL national business manager Phil Tremayne, said: "The industry has a skills shortage and the APL feels it should support young people entering this sector. The ideal way to do this is through WorldSkills and our APL apprentice programme. This not only aids the skills shortage, but bridges the gap between skills and education."

 

 


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Just-in-time may just help

Just-in-time may just help

A just-in-time policy can be a smart move to aid cash flow in light of post-Brexit uncertainty, Neville Stein advises

Tree stakes and ties

Tree stakes and ties

There are various different methods to provide support for trees depending on their size and location, Sally Drury explains.

Excavators

Excavators

Manufacturers are offering improved models to buy or hire for a wide range of landscaping works, Sally Drury explains.


 
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Are you a landscape supplier?

Horticulture Week Landscape Project Leads

If so, you should be receiving our new service for Horticulture Week subscribers delivering landscape project leads from live, approved, planning applications across the UK.

Landscape Contracts & Tenders

Industry Data

New: We have pooled the wealth of data from the past six months' worth of Landscape Project Leads to create an exclusive report for subscribers looking at the key development trends, clients and locations for 2016.