Landscaping students win awards from Lantra Scotland

Two landscaping and horticulture students from West Lothian have picked up prizes at the Lantra Scotland Land-based Learner of the Year Awards.

Oatridge College students Colin Smith and Mark McKenzie impressed judges at the Lantra Scotland Land-based Learner of the Year Awards with their landscaping skills and motivation.

Colin Smith was named overall runner-up Land-based Learner of the Year, while Mark McKenzie was given the new Award for Endeavour.

Colin Smith is in the final year of an apprenticeship with Edinburgh-based landscaping firm Premier One.

Since he joined Premier One - which is run by former British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI) chairman John Gillan - three years ago he has been promoted three times, from apprentice to tradesman, to team leader and is currently a trainee landscaping contract supervisor.

Mark McKenzie enrolled at Oatridge College when he was just 15, in spite of the fact that he had no secondary education. He was top student in his certificate course in landscape construction and design and his now studying for his Higher National Certificate.

Oatridge College principal David James said: "Our students have once again done incredibly well. To go home this year with these awards is very gratifying."

The overall winner at the awards and winner of Lantra Scotland's Horticulture Learner of the Year was Paul Carella, from Bellshill, Lanarkshire, who is doing his SVQ Level 3 in amenity horticulture with Gosta Training.

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