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WorldSkills UK heat tests landscaping skills

Future garden landscapers demonstrated their skills at the north west regional heat of the WorldSkills UK competition, run on campus last week.

Horticultural students and apprentices from across the region, including six of our own students, took part in the knock-out heat which was run by the Association of Professional Landscapers.

Following a similar elimination round in the south of the country, the highest scoring students will go to the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park for further training and to get used to appearing in front of big crowds. This year’s final will be held at The Skills Show at the NEC Birmingham in the autumn.

The competitors had to build a decked unit in a timed session and were marked on the quality of their work and attention to detail. We put forward Level 3 Extended Diploma Horticulture students India Hill, Jay Hevingham and Finin Talbot (from Year 1) and Joshua Camm and Christopher Shore (from Year 2). Last year’s finalist Richard Carden also took part.

The students have been preparing for the competition this term thanks to the efforts of hard landscape tutor Jason Hinks. They will hear who has been selected for the next round in May.

Jodie Lithgard, lead judge and trainer said: “The competitors produced work to a good standard. This is very pleasing as we are putting all our efforts into increasing the standard of skills coming into the industry.”

WorldSkills UK feeds into the Olympic-styled Worlds Skills final, held every two years to showcase the world’s top young talent in vocational industries.

Former Level 3 Extended Diploma in Horticulture student Matt Beesley, 21, is in the final selection for this year’s international squad which will represent GB in Sao Paulo, Brazil, in August.

Matt, has progressed to become Director of Beesley’s Landscapes and employs two apprentices, both of whom took part in Reaseheath’s regional heat. Matt built a garden for RHS Chelsea Flower Show last year alongside Jodie Lidgard and this year will partner garden designer Sharon Hockenhull in the build of the ‘Light Catcher’ visionary garden at RHS Flower Show Tatton Park.

To find out more about our horticulture courses visit www.reaseheath.ac.uk/horticulture

Fantastic success for Reaseheath at WorldSkills UK

Reaseheath florist Anna Eite is officially the most talented student florist in Britain after winning gold at the WorldSkills UK national finals this weekend.

Anna Eite competing

Anna competing

Anna took the top title in the advanced section against strong competition from the best students from colleges and training providers nationwide. The taxing competition was held over three days in front of thousands of visitors to The Skills Show in Birmingham, the country’s biggest showcase of vocational skills and careers.

Anna had to complete five tasks which included designing a floral hat, belt and chair, making up a planted container and taking part in a team project.

Anna, 21, is a Level 3 Diploma in Floristry student and has been supported and trained by Programme Leader for Floristry Sue Poole. Said Sue: “This was a fantastic result and we are all so proud of Anna. She was a wonderful representative for Reaseheath and for the floristry department.”

Richard Carden chats to lead judge Jody Lidgard

Richard chats to lead judge Jody Lidgard

Unfortunately Anna will be over the 22 years age limit for the WorldSkills final in Abu Dhabi in 2017 and will not be considered for the WorldSkills GB team for Sao Paulo, Brazil, in 2015 as this squad has already been selected.

Anna will represent us at the Chelsea Flower Show 2015, however, as she was on the student team which won the RHS Tatton Park Floristry College of the Year Competition this summer. This title made us eligible for the national final at Chelsea.

Our horticulture department was also proud to support Richard Carden as he battled it out in the WorldSkills UK garden landscape finals. Although Richard, a Level 3 Extended Diploma in Horticulture student, didn’t win a medal he was one of just six students to be selected for the national finals. He met the challenge to build a 2m x 6m garden designed by award winning designer Alexandra Froggatt.

Course Manager Tracy Walker said: “Richard did a fantastic job considering the pressure he was under to perform at the very highest level.”

You find out more information about our floristry and horticulture courses on our website.

It’s party time for Cheshire Gardens of Distinction!

Happy tenth birthday to Cheshire Gardens of Distinction! This formidable organisation, which represents the county’s greatest gardens, celebrated its anniversary in style at the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park on Wednesday 23rd July with a wonderful cake made by Reaseheath’s Bakery and Patisserie Department. Performances by the Hub Dancers and medieval musician Tom Hughes were also part of the party.

Tracey Walker and Sam YoudCGoD’s stand showcases gardens from eight of its members: Arley Hall, Adlington Hall, Biddulph Grange, Cholmondeley Castle, Fryers Roses of Knutsford, Norton Priory, Bluebell Cottage Gardens and the Cheshire Gardens Trust. Each garden features ‘The Rose of Distinction’, a new floribunda rose launched by Fryers Roses to celebrate the group’s tenth birthday.

Reaseheath horticulture lecturer Tracey Walker has co-ordinated the stand which is in the ‘Inspire’ zone, an area dedicated to cutting edge design and fresh ideas. And as a ‘thank you’ she was presented with a beautiful rose bush by CGoD chair Sam Youd, former head gardener at Tatton Park.

Earlier in the day, part of ITV’s ‘Good Morning Britain’ was presented from the stand. You can watch the broadcast again here, the stand features at both 43 minutes and 1 hour 29 minutes into the programme.

Cheshire Gardens of Distinction is at Inspire 149 at the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park, which runs until Sunday July 27th.

 

Good luck Richard!

Talented Level 3 Extended Diploma in Horticulture Richard Carden is representing Reaseheath in the WorldSkills UK Landscape Gardening Semi Finals at the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park.

He is one of six students challenged to build a 2m x 6m garden designed by award winning designer Alexandra Froggatt.

Competition entries were the highest yet and Richard successfully completed a theory test and tie-breaker exercise to claim his place in the semi-finals. The competitors have three days to complete their gardens, with the results being announced on Friday.

The judges are Association of Professional Landscapers chairman Mark Gregory, garden designer and four times RHS gold medal winner Adam Frost, landscape firm owner Jody Lidgard and 2011 WorldSkillsUK medal winner Simon Abbott.

Winners from the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park will compete at the WorldSkills UK finals, to be held at The Skills Show, Birmingham NEC, in November. There they will fight for the national title in front of 70,000 people and will also be in the running for selection for the international WorldSkills Competition in Sao Paulo, Brazil, next year.

Reaseheath florists win RHS Tatton Park Floristry College of the Year

Reaseheath floristry students were celebrating after winning the RHS Tatton Park Floristry College of the Year Competition yesterday.

This prestigious new competition is open to UK based floristry colleges and training providers and showcases the talent of students.

Level 3 Diploma in Floristry students Anna Eite, Zoe Sillito and Wendy Anderson, supported by Programme Leader for Floristry Sue Poole, were awarded first place against strong competition from four other colleges and will go through to the final at the Chelsea Flower Show 2015.

The students created five carnival themed designs using flowers with a colour theme of red, gold, green and orange: a mask, a wall hanging, an arrangement, a wired bouquet and a planted design.

As well as winning the college competition they also won a silver gilt medal for their stand.

This has been the second great result for our floristry department this summer, as Anna and Zoe won second and third places respectively at a recent WorldSkills UK competition.

Come and see our student design and our college stand in the Floral Design Studio at RHS Flower Show Tatton Park, Wednesday July 23 (members only) to Sunday July 27

 

Reaseheath’s show garden adds flavour to RHS Flower Show

A truly edible show garden, A Taste of Wythenshawe celebrates the success of community health and welfare programmes led by sponsors the Wythenshawe Community Housing Group (WCHG).

Designed and built by Foundation Degree Garden and Landscape Design students from Reaseheath College and on display next week at the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park, the garden incorporates innovative and creative approaches to growing edible plants suitable for a 21st century urban community.

Its inspiration is Real Food Wythenshawe, a five year £1 million Big Lottery-funded community food campaign led by WCHG which promotes ways that people can grow their own fruit and vegetables and cook healthy, economical meals.

After the show the garden will be rebuilt in Wythenshawe Park, where it will be shared by the local community. The re-instatement will be carried out by members of the Turnaround team, a programme developed by WCHG to offer training and potentially employment opportunities to those with criminal records.

All team members have been trained by Reaseheath College and have successfully gained their NPTC Level 2 horticulture award. One member, Stephen Cleator, is now employed in WCHG’s grounds maintenance department.

The Turnaround team assisted in the show build and the local community were involved in pre-show planning and development.

Said WCHG Chief Executive Nigel Wilson: “The Real Food Wythenshawe campaign supports and encourages residents to take control over what they and their families eat. It demonstrates that healthy eating is possible for everyone, regardless of age, budget, ability or time constraints. In the same way, the garden promotes growing and eating home grown produce and, at the same time, reducing food miles and carbon footprint.

“We are delighted to be partnering Reaseheath College with this innovative show garden and even more excited about the prospect of bringing it back home to Wythenshawe. The icing on the cake, for us, is that the Turnaround team are playing a central role in this truly community based project.”

A Taste of Wythenshawe is in the Feast zone, an area which celebrates fresh produce and the joy of growing and cooking home grown food. Cookery demonstrations will take place in the zone using vegetables and fruit from the plot.

The garden design uses interlocking segments to form a crescent shape which mirrors the layout of Wythenshawe’s original garden city. It reflects the concept of the ‘three magnets’: Countryside as an edible ‘forest garden’, Town as a community seat and eat area and Town/Country, a community garden combining edible and ornamental planting. Tramlines represent the connection of Wythenshawe to Manchester through expansion of the Metrolink.

Hydroponics, an aeroponic tower and sculptural features such as rebar trees made by Reaseheath’s Engineering Department offer opportunities for vertical growing to save space and water.Food foraging is promoted through an edible meadow, a foraging forest, a herb living wall, a salad table and a traditional allotment with chicken coup. Pollinating insects, especially bees, are encouraged by a wide variety of pollinator plants and recycled materials are used wherever possible.

The design and build team are students who have just completed their Foundation Degree in Garden and Landscape Design. Most are returning to college for a further year’s study to complete their BSc Landscape Design and Management.

 

For further details of RHS Flower Show Tatton Park see www.rhs.org.uk/shows

For further details of Reaseheath’s horticulture courses see www.reaseheath.ac.uk/horticulture

 

Reaseheath students gear up for RHS Flower Show Tatton Park

Reaseheath College garden designers and florists are gearing up for the prestigious RHS Flower Show Tatton Park (July 23 – July 27). We have an impressive medal record for our show gardens and floral designs and our students are hoping to add to the tally with this year’s entries.

 

Feast 291 A Taste of Wythenshawe

The show garden team busy growing on their vegetables

The show garden team busy growing on their vegetables

A team of Foundation Degree Garden and Landscape Design students, helped by  fellow learners from all horticultural courses, are creating an edible show garden in the ‘Feast’ zone, an area which celebrates fresh produce and the joy of growing and cooking home grown food.

Sponsored by Wythenshawe Community Housing Group (WCHG), the garden incorporates innovative and creative approaches to growing edible plants including hydroponics and sculptural features. It celebrates Real Food Wythenshawe, a five year £1 million Big Lottery-funded community food campaign led by WCHG which promotes ways that people can grow their own fruit and vegetables and cook healthy, economical meals.

After the show the garden will be rebuilt in Wythenshawe Park, where it will be shared by the local community.

Said WCHG Chief Executive Nigel Wilson: “The Real Food Wythenshawe campaign supports and encourages residents to take control over what they and their families eat. It demonstrates that healthy eating is possible for everyone, regardless of age, budget, ability or time constraints.

“We are delighted to be partnering Reaseheath College with this innovative show garden and even more excited about the prospect of bringing it back home to Wythenshawe.”

The garden re-instatement at Wythenshawe will be carried out by members of the Turnaround team, who have also assisted in the show build. The Turnaround programme was developed by WCHG to offer training and potentially employment opportunities to those with criminal records. All team members have been trained by Reaseheath and have successfully gained their NPTC Level 2 horticulture award.

 

Inspire 149 Cheshire Gardens of Distinction

Reaseheath RHS students are helping to build a carnival themed show feature for the Cheshire Gardens of Distinction, which this year celebrates its 10th birthday. The group will be represented by eight leading visitor attractions: Arley Hall and Gardens,  Adlington Hall and Gardens, Cholmondeley Castle and Gardens, Fryers Roses of Knutsford, Biddulph Grange, Norton Priory, Bluebell Cottage Gardens and Nurseries and the Cheshire Gardens Trust.

Reaseheath Horticulture lecturer Tracey Walker has helped to co-ordinate the stand, which is in the ‘Inspire’ zone, an area dedicated to cutting edge design and fresh ideas. Each of the eight gardens will feature ‘The Rose of Distinction’, a new floribunda rose being launched by Fryers Roses to celebrate the group’s centenary.

 

Floral Design Studio

Reaseheath florists will showcase their talents with a creative, carnival themed stand.

Five floristry students will also compete in the new Floristry College of the Year Competition. Level 3 Diploma in Floristry students Anna Eite, Zoe Sillito, Wendy Anderson, Carron White and Christine Roberts will be supported by Programme Leader for Floristry Sue Poole.

The students will create five designs using flowers with a colour theme of red, green and yellow: a mask, a wall hanging, an arrangement, a wired bouquet and a planted design. The winning college will go through to the final at the Chelsea Flower Show 2015.

Hopes are high for a good result, as Anna and Zoe won second and third places respectively at a recent WorldSkills UK competition.

 

WorldSkills UK Landscape Gardening Semi Finals

Talented Level 3 Extended Diploma in Horticulture Richard Carden will represent Reaseheath in this prestigious competition. He is one of eight students (divided into teams of two) challenged to build 2m x 6m gardens designed by Alexandra Froggatt.

Competition entries were the highest yet and Richard successfully completed a theory test and tie-breaker exercise to claim his place in the semi-finals. The judges will be Association of Professional Landscapers chairman Mark Gregory, garden designer and four times RHS gold medal winner Adam Frost, landscape firm owner Jody Lidgard and 2011 WorldSkillsUK medal winner Simon Abbott.

Winners from the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park will compete at the WorldSkills UK finals, to be held at The Skills Show, Birmingham NEC, in November. There they will fight for the national title in front of 70,000 people and will also be in the running for selection for the international WorldSkills Competition in Sao Paulo, Brazil, next year.

 

You can find out more about our Garden and Landscape Design, Horticulture and Floral Design courses on our website.