Pro Arb is keen to highlight the great youngsters that are currently plying their trade in our industry. This month, we speak to three apprentice arborists at AA approved Ringrose Tree Services in Oxfordshire
Why have you chosen arboriculture as a career?
Jamie Chaundy: I’ve always been keen on a physical job, working indoors never interested me. Working in arboriculture also has many different challenges on a daily basis, so I don’t get bored!
Mitchell Good: I was born into it and I really enjoy it!
Lewis Gardiner: I like working outside. It’s hard work but it’s enjoyable – I feel a great deal of job satisfaction at the end of the day. I also have an interest in trees and plants and I like the variety this industry offers me, every day is different.
Did you go to college? If so, where did you go and what qualifications did you get?
JC: I did a Level 2 Apprenticeship in Trees and Timber at Sparsholt College near Winchester. It’s good to be around other people at the same experience level and discuss what different aspects of arboriculture are out there.
MG: I’m currently attending the University of Massachusetts for Arboriculture.
LG: I’m at Sparsholt College for one day a week working towards a Level 2 Apprenticeship in Trees and Timber.
What is your favourite part of your current role?
JC: I personally prefer the climbing jobs. I find them more of a challenge but they’re also greatly rewarding. The views from the top of the tree aren’t bad, either!
MG: As an American intern, I enjoy comparing how tree work is done in England to back home in the US.
LG: I enjoy the tree identification side of things.
What is your favourite piece of equipment to use?
JC: I don’t have a favourite piece of equipment, but if the equipment isn’t maintained properly, it makes the job a lot harder.
MG: I like using the chippers.
LG: Me too, I like the chipper.
What are your future ambitions within the industry?
JC: I would like to stay as active as possible. It would be nice to move up the ranks in the climbing side at Ringrose Tree Services. I see myself moving towards a more educational role such as tree surveying or training.
MG: I’d like to start my own arb company, or move into arb sales.
LG: I’m hoping to become a registered climber.
Is there a structured development plan at Ringrose Tree Services for you?
JC: Yes, I am working towards being a lead climber. I’m currently working with a climber with a lot of experience. I would like to train other apprentices in the future. At Ringrose we are encouraged to better ourselves through our annual training programme.
MG: Yes, as an intern I am being taken through all sorts at Ringrose, starting with chipper and first aid training and hopefully ending with chainsaw and climbing training.
LG: I currently receive work from college to do on site with Ringrose, and my colleagues here help and encourage me to achieve my goals.
‘Jamie Chaundy came to us at the age of 22 after starting out in another career. He showed promise and as a result of the apprenticeship scheme Jamie has gone onto other in-house training in order to operate as a tree surgeon with us. We have also taken on Mitch Good, an intern from University of Massachusetts, Boston. Mitch contacted us when his Bachelor’s Degree in Arboriculture & Community Forest Management asked for the students to carry out a four-month internship. Lewis started working with us in Feb 2014. Lewis is our youngest apprentice
so far. He is looking forward to competing in the novice category at The 3ATC Climbing Competition at The ARB Show in June’ – Megan Ringrose, Director