Alongside supporting and advising partner organisations with their apprenticeships and skills development programmes, we currently employ 18 apprentices directly.
Forestry apprenticeships involve a wide variety of challenging tasks, such as learning all aspects of tree care, disease and pest control.
Formal qualifications, such as certificates for emergency first aid at work, NPTC in brushcutters, trimmers and clearing saw, NPTC in chainsaw maintenance, cross cutting and felling small trees and tariffing are also part of the process.
Four such apprentices, currently working in the Forest of Dean are (pictured from left to right) Sophie, Ben, Jacob and Gavan. Sophie was previously a fire fighter but is now pursuing a career in conservation having taken time to volunteer on Flat Holm Island, a nature reserve in the Bristol Channel.
Ben’s background includes farming and ground care; he wants to pursue a career in forestry and countryside management.
Jake comes from the Forest of Dean and is a keen competitive downhill mountain biker. His family have worked and lived in the area for many years giving him huge background knowledge of the area.
Gavan has a degree in zoology and would like to pursue a career as a wildlife ranger, he volunteered for six months with the Forestry Commission before becoming an apprentice.
With one year of their apprenticeship left, the Forest of Dean team hope to gain enough experience, knowledge and qualifications to progress onto their chosen fields of interest.