Meet the trainees

September at the Garden means a new intake of horticultural trainees. Here we meet them and find out more about where they're from and their hopes for the future.
Our seven TraineesOur seven Trainees
Each year, seven trainees embark on our Trainee Horticultural Technician scheme – a one-year placement consisting of practical and formal training to complete the Cambridge Certificate in Practical Horticulture and Plantsmanship. This is an open scheme for any adult looking to pursue a career in horticulture by gaining or furthering their experience, and developing plantsmanship skills.

With September already under their belts, our new trainees are still smiling and full of enthusiasm – in fact so enthusiastic, they’ve agreed to share their insights and experiences by each writing a monthly blog post as they rotate around the Garden’s seven horticultural sections (see link to the left).

We begin with a simple introduction – as you’ll see, they all have different backgrounds and levels of previous experience, but there’s one thing they all have in common – a real passion for plants…

Robyn Young
From: Birmingham
I used to be a: Nursery teacher
Previous experience: Two years voluntary experience at Winterbourne House & Garden, Birmingham, Martineau Community Garden, Birmingham
Section: Experimental
I’m hoping to: Work for the National Trust in a beautiful historic garden, or teach young children about horticulture – perhaps both!

Bryony Langley
From: Stirling
I used to be a: Student and café’ worker
Previous experience: Two year Level 2 apprenticeship with the RHS at RHS Rosemoor, Devon.
Section: Alpine & Woodland
I’m hoping to: Really improve my plantsmanship and develop my skills in the more academic side of horticulture.

Robert Bradshaw
From: London
I used to be a: Student and café’ manager
Previous experience: Two year Diploma with the RHS at RHS Wisley, Surrey, HBGTP traineeship at Gravetye Manor, West Sussex.
Section: Landscape & Machinery
I’m hoping to: Do anything and everything in the world of horticulture!

Barbara Griffith
From: Belfast
I used to be an: Architect’s assistant
Previous experience: HBGTP traineeship at Mount Stewart, County Down, NI and Rowallane, County Down, NI, Foundation degree in Horticulture.
Section: Trees & Shrubs
I’m hoping to: Absorb as much as possible from the skilled and experienced staff here and build my confidence in practical horticultural skills.

Toby Warren
From: Gloucestershire
I used to be an: Audio engineer
Previous experience: voluntary experience at Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and Eltham Palace, London.
Section: Demonstration & Display
I’m hoping to: Take on board all the skills and advice that the staff here can give me, ready for my future horticultural career – wherever that may be!

William Greenfield
From: Cambridgeshire
I used to be a: Buyer for Scotsdales Garden Centre
Previous experience: RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles & Practice of Horticulture
Section: Systematics
I’m hoping to: Immerse myself in the collections here, and develop my skills in plantsmanship and collection curation.

Graham Hale
From: Hertfordshire
I used to be an: IT analyst
Previous experience: voluntary work at the Wimpole Estate, Cambridgeshire
Section: Glasshouse
I’m hoping to: Develop my skills in plantsmanship, and potentially begin a horticultural career with the National Trust.

Read monthly blogs written by the trainees by clicking the links to the left
Publication Date