Landscape apprenticeships

Educational reforms have created new opportunities for people to enter the landscape profession. The Landscape Institute (LI) is exploring this through our Landscape Apprenticeships Trailblazer.

Apprenticeships are a fantastic opportunity to future-proof the landscape sector:

  • They broaden the pathways into the industry
  • They shape education routes and help develop new talent
  • They improve accessibility to, and diversity within, the profession

All of this will help us address the skills shortage in landscape and empower our members to continue delivering for the benefit of people, place and nature.

Apprentices undertake study while also working within the industry. This enables apprentices to directly apply cutting-edge knowledge within their roles. Employers support apprentices from enrolment to qualification, with a recognised, government-funded credential boosting their career development prospects. This enables businesses to attract a diverse range of talented people to become surveying professionals.

How apprenticeships can benefit your practice

✔ Streamline your processes. Apprentices free up time for more experienced practitioners to concentrate on your major projects.
✔ Attract new business. According to National Apprenticeship Service data, 81% of consumers favour using a company that takes on apprentices.
✔ Meet your company’s skill needs. Staff receive training tailored to the requirements of your business, including specialist skills. On-the-job learning minimises disruption and maximises impact.
✔ Solve recruitment challenges. Companies receive funding for each apprentice they take on. Save on recruitment costs and future-proof your own workforce by growing and shaping your own experts.
✔ Improve your business culture. Gain new perspectives; open progression opportunities in your firm, motivating your staff and energising your workplace; and reduce staff turnover
✔ Help shape the future of the industry.

Introducing the Landscape Trailblazer

Employer groups called ‘trailblazers’ develop the standards that determine apprentices’ job roles. This approach leads to recognised, relevant and transferable skills and qualifications. Trailblazer groups are at the forefront of creating new apprenticeship standards, with hundreds in existence or development.

The Landscape Trailblazer first came together in October 2017. For the latest on our progress in this area, see our landscape apprenticeship updates.


Farrer Huxley Associates
Fira Landscape Architecture
Gillespies LLP
Highways England
LDA Design
Land Use Consultants (LUC)

Munro and Whitten
The Environment Partnership (TEP)
The Landscape Practice Group
Birmingham City Council
Tyler Grange LLP
Wilder Associates
Winchester City Council

Understanding the levy and apprenticeship funding

On 6 April 2017, the government introduced a new apprenticeship levy with the aim of funding three million apprenticeship starts by 2020.

The levy, which is 0.5% of a company’s annual pay bill, applies to companies with a payroll of more than £3 million. This funding contributes to the training and assessment of new apprenticeships, but organisations will still pay apprentices’ wages.

Estimate how much your organisation may spend on apprenticeships.

Companies that do not meet the levy threshold have the option to ‘co-invest’, with the government meeting up to 90-100% of the training costs. This is a huge incentive for many landscape and placemaking practices.

Visit for more information.


The below is a rough estimate of the timeline for developing new standards. Based on constraints and timelines from the Institute for Apprenticeships (IFA), it may change.

End of February 2018Submit proposal to the Institute for Apprenticeships (IFA)
April 2018IFA inform Trailblazer of outcome
April-June 2018Consult with the wider profession and education providers, including our accredited courses
June-September 2018Develop standards and end-point assessment, and go through IFA application process
September-December 2018Finalise processes and support practices in opening up roles in their companies for apprentices
January 2019Apprenticeships ready for delivery

Latest apprenticeship updates