I firmly believe our sports turf and amenity industry is one of the best industries to work in with such a diverse variety of job opportunities on offer.
Having worked in the industry for well over 45 years, I can honestly say that without question, the opportunity to learn and develop new skills and work in an ever-challenging environment is there for all to experience.
What industry gives you the opportunity to work in such a broad range of environments and deliver playing surfaces, parks and open spaces for the benefit of thousands of people.
However, the skills and expertise required is also very challenging. We need to arm ourselves with the right technical abilities, skills and knowledge to manage these facilities.
To be able to operate in a safe manner we also must understand what laws and regulations need to be adhered to - ensuring we comply and keep ourselves and those around us, safe.
As practitioners it is our duty to have the appropriate certificates and qualifications to do our jobs effectively and efficiently, demonstrating that we understand our role when carrying out certain operations and activities.
This is particularly important when operating machinery or applying chemical protection products.
For many years we have seen the introduction of awards and practical assessment schemes run by colleges, universities and training providers. A recent trip to Harper Adams University enabled me to meet up with Ian Pryce, short courses manager at Harper Adams and David Fisher, market development manager from Lantra, who invited me along to see one of Lantra’s first pesticide recertification events being held at the university and also to find out more about some new courses being offered.
These events give instructors a chance to showcase their skills and earn CPD points whilst keeping themselves updated with any industry changes.
Lantra is the leading awarding organisation for the land-based and horticultural industries supporting both individuals and companies to achieve personal and business growth.
As a nationally recognised awarding organisation, they have over 40 years' experience of developing quality training and qualifications. Their products are designed to specifically meet the business and individual needs of those primarily working within the land-based and environmental sectors.
Offering a diverse range of training and qualifications, all their courses are developed with professional industry bodies and employers to ensure their training is of the highest quality.
Their portfolio offers opportunities for individuals from all ages and backgrounds and includes one-day training-only courses, integrated training and assessment and qualifications at various levels.
All of their courses are delivered via a nationwide network of expert providers, instructors and assessors, all of whom are quality assured to their own high standards.
All their products are recognised by the regulatory bodies Ofqual, SQA and Qualifications Wales. This means that you can be sure any of their qualifications are nationally recognised.
In order to maintain their high-quality standards, their partner network (including all providers, instructors and assessors) are reviewed annually with robust quality assurance visits completed on a regular basis.
Ian is very pleased with the association Harper Adams University has with Lantra and pleased that their working relationship continues with the development of new courses as they come online.
They continue to develop training and qualifications to fulfil industry needs, so as the demand for non-chemical weed management alternatives escalates, Lantra’s upcoming Integrated Weed Management course looks set to generate plenty of interest.
In fact I myself may apply and take the opportunity to undertake this course - as the saying goes you are never too old to learn!
If you’re currently a Lantra pesticide instructor you’ll need to attend a recertification event
Get in touch with the instructor network team for more information on future events - firstname.lastname@example.org