Apprenticeship success for former Future Gardener

From unemployment to apprenticeship – career success for one Future Gardener!

Gareth Catherall was long term unemployed and struggling until he signed up for our free Future Gardeners course. As part of the course Gareth did work experience at Grosvenor Britain & Ireland and as a result has been offered an apprenticeship with their horticulture team, based in Belgravia.

Bankside Open Spaces Trust’s Future Gardeners programme is designed for people just like Gareth, people who have been out of work for a while or who struggle to access training or education. We developed the course alongside The worshipful Company of Gardeners, Royal Parks Guild and Walworth Garden, after identifying skills shortages within horticulture,. We wanted to make it easier for people to gain jobs in the sector. The result is Future Gardeners, which now runs three times a year with great success – over three quarters of those who finish the course go on to employment in the industry.

Gareth says, ‘Future Gardeners has changed my life, I had been unemployed for a number of years and fighting to get back to work. The course gave me the confidence and horticultural skills needed. I’m overjoyed to be working again.’

Key to Future Gardeners’ success are the partnerships the course has within the industry – The Worshipful Company of Gardeners co-fund the scheme, Walworth Garden help to deliver classroom based study, enabling students to gain a Level 2 City and Guilds Qualification, and many large organisations host work experience. Grosvenor Britain & Ireland have hosted students from the course since its inception.

Simon Lewis, Landscape Manager, Grosvenor Britain & Ireland added, “We are always more than happy to host Future Gardeners for their work experience placement. Their enthusiasm always impresses, but Gareth really stood out this time around. We’re pleased to have been able to offer him a permanent apprentice position on the horticulture team.”

‘I’m overjoyed to be working again.’

Gareth is pictured above with George from Walworth Garden, Louisa from Bankside Open Spaces Trust, and a fellow Future Gardener on work experience with Grosvenor Britain & Ireland and with the full future Gardeners team before graduating.

Mary Trafford