Mini-films seek to create a more diverse industry

Sector skills council Lantra has commissioned a series of mini-films for its website aimed at encouraging young people from diverse backgrounds to consider a career in the horticulture industry.

The collection of six films, each twoto three-minutes long, will show various disciplines such as landscape design and arboriculture represented by a diverse range of people.

The campaign was created by London Development Agency urban design consultant Paul Campbell. "There is a whole community out there that doesn't recognise the horticultural profession as something they can get into. It is simply a case of weak marketing rather than prejudice," he said. "Without a strong campaign and without faces people can relate to, it's tough to engage interest."

Campbell explained that the films form the start of a wider campaign he intends to develop over the coming year, including potential proposals for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2012 and collaborations with Kew. "I want to promote the profession in schools and develop diverse groups and high-profile mentors working across London."

Almost 99 per cent of people working in the landscaping, horticulture and sports turf industry are from a white ethnic background, Lantra research has shown.

The organisation's London Partnership manager Jonathan Pettit said it was time that changed. "It's vital that we encourage more people from various backgrounds into the land-based industries and (this) project is a positive step."

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