An intensive eight-week course developed as part of an innovative partnership between the Forestry Commission, Plumpton College in Sussex and the Royal Forestry Society (RFS) has been given official approval for those transitioning out of the military.
The course, leading to the RFS Cert Arb/Forestry, is the first land-based skills course to have been approved by the Career Transition Partnership (CTP) – the MoD official provider of resettlement support for all the Armed Forces. It aims to raise awareness of the forestry industry within the military and the valuable transferable skills that ex-service people have that would suit the sector.
The first courses begin in September when they will be open both to those who are leaving the military and to civilians.
Simon Lloyd, Chief Executive, Royal Forestry Society, says:
“Forestry is a dynamic and growing sector which needs to attract new talent to continue to thrive. We are proud to be a partner in what is the first land-based training programme to be offered through Careers Transition Partnership (CPT) to personnel whose Terms of Service in the Forces are coming to an end.
“There are many transferable skills those with a Forces background can bring to forestry. The RFS Level 2 Certificates are recognised as the ‘gold standard’ for demonstrating both practical and theoretical competence and will provide a springboard for those leaving the Forces to go on to have a rewarding career in the forestry and countryside sectors.”
The course theory and practical elements have been developed by the partnership with employability in mind. The course includes theory units such as tree ID, introduction to diseases and tree biology. As well as training in competency tickets such as chainsaw maintenance and cross cutting, tree felling and the use of woodchippers. At the end of the course students will be equipped with the basic knowledge and certificates of competence to find employment and progress within the industry.