Horticultural Level 2 Apprenticeship at The Royal Parks

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Horticultural Level 2 Apprenticeship

The Royal Parks Horticultural Apprenticeship Scheme consists of:

  • On the job training at one of the eight Royal Parks, based in Central and Greater London.
  • Day release to college to study for qualifications that will provide a firm foundation for a career in horticulture.
  • Specialist masterclasses run by experts from The Royal Parks and the Royal Parks Guild.
  • The length of the scheme will depend on the entry level and qualifications studied, however it will typically be 3 years.


You will be given training in the theory and practice of developing and maintaining high quality public gardens, sports grounds and green communal areas.

We will train you in theoretical and practical horticulture, together with cultivation, design and landscape management. You’ll also learn about pest control and soil science, and be trained to operate a range of machinery.

Classroom learning at Capel Manor College (The Regent's Park campus) will be combined with practical experience that will utilise the unique and unrivaled environments across the Royal Parks.


During the scheme you will have the opportunity to gain the following qualifications:

  • Horticulture and Landscape Operative Trailblazer Standard
  • Royal Horticultural Society Level 2 certificates in Horticulture
  • Certificates of Competence in Pesticide Application (PA1, PA6/PA6W)
  • Certificates in Safe Use of Pedestrian and Ride-on Mowers
  • Emergency First Aid at work
  • Functional skills in English and Maths

As a Royal Parks apprentice you will be employed by one of The Royal Parks' Landscape Maintenance Contractors. Your duties will typically include:

  • Shrub bed maintenance
  • Planting bedding, shrubs and trees
  • Grass cutting
  • Bedding maintenance
  • General gardening
  • Litter picking
  • Spraying of chemicals – subject to qualification
  • Driving – subject to qualification and authorisation
  • Ad-hoc soft landscaping
  • Ad-hoc involvement in the events / ceremonies within The Royal Parks
  • Working as part of a highly skilled team to maintain The Royal Parks landscape

Why apply?

The Royal Parks Apprenticeship Scheme is an ideal way to begin a career in the horticultural and park management industry. This is a unique opportunity to work in London’s historic parkland.

As a Royal Parks apprentice, you’ll work and learn in one of London’s finest parks and get paid while you complete your education. When you finish the course, you’ll be qualified as a skilled gardener and you’ll have gained a vast amount of experience from working in one of the UK’s most famous parks - Hyde Park, St James’s Park, Bushy Park, Richmond Park, The Regent’s Park and Primrose Hill, Greenwich Park, or Kensington Gardens. These parks are widely recognised as among the best of their kind in the world.

At the end of the apprenticeship, you will be ideally placed to continue your career in the horticultural industry either in a 'hands-on' role or by progressing to a management or supervisory post. This could be within open space management, landscape construction or design industries.

Many past Royal Parks Apprentices are now employed as Park Managers, Supervisors or Contract Managers for The Royal Parks and in other high profile locations such as Buckingham Palace, Crystal Palace Football Club and prestigious gardens worldwide.

Who are we looking for?

We are looking for people with a passion for gardening, who are keen to pursue a career in horticulture and park management. You should enjoy working outdoors, in all weathers, and be prepared for early starts. A positive attitude, appetite for learning and good communication will all help you to get the most from the Apprenticeship.

You will be working in some of the most popular parks in the UK; you should be keen to positively represent The Royal Parks to the millions of Londoners and tourists who visit them.

At least 2 GCSEs grades 9-4, preferably in English and Maths or equivalent grades are desirable.

Applications are welcomed from all backgrounds and age groups.

About The Royal Parks

The Royal Parks is a charity created in March 2017 and officially launched in July 2017 to support and manage 5,000 acres of Royal parkland across London.

We look after eight of London’s largest open spaces; Hyde Park, The Green Park, Richmond Park, Greenwich Park, St James’s Park, Bushy Park and The Regent’s Park, and Kensington Gardens. We also manage other important open spaces in the capital including Brompton Cemetery, Victoria Tower Gardens, Canning Green and Poet’s Corner.

In 2017, we took over the role of managing the parks from The Royal Parks Agency – a former executive agency of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), as well as fundraising and some education from the Royal Parks Foundation. The two organisations joined forces to create our charity and bring together the best of fundraising, education and park management.

How to apply

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