After successfully getting through the qualifiers, a former Wiltshire College & University Centre student is excited to have made it to the final of WorldSkills UK Live.
Doug Beck, is one of six skilled young students and apprentices to compete for the number one spot of the Association of Professional Landscapers (APL) Young Landscaper title at the NEC in Birmingham today.
More than 70,000 spectators will attend the three-day competition which started today, where the competitors will battle it out on tasks such as paving, decking, walling, plant ident, procurement and working to a client brief.
Doug, aged 18, who lives near Bath, said: “I am very excited about reaching the final of this competition which has been a really great opportunity for me.
“I was a little shocked when I found out although I have worked hard in each stage of the competition.
“I have been busy preparing for the final, which includes being able to identify plants and know their Latin names.”
Doug joined the Level 3 Horticulture course at Lackham in 2015 where he had his eyes set on becoming a skilled landscaper, picking up some skill from his dad, who works in grounds and garden maintenance.
Since finishing College in the summer, Doug has been busy working self-employed, specialising in tree surgery and landscaping and has also been busy perfecting his skills as he moved through the stages of WorldSkills.
This is the second year that the College has reached the final of the landscaping category in the prestigious competition with Adam McGarry winning Gold in 2017.
WorldSkills UK is the nation’s largest skills and careers event that helps to share the future of a new generation.
Ian Revill, Assistant Principal of Lackham, said: “For a College to get a student into a WorldSkills final is always a great achievement and is a real reflection of the quality of the training offered at the College.
“For Lackham to have a finalist this year following on from a gold medal last year is such a credit to Chris Roberts and the horticulture team.
“I am so hopeful that Doug can do the double for us but am also very proud of the achievement that he has already made in getting to the final. Good luck Doug!”