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Myerscough greenkeepers dominate shortlists for national award

Tuesday 24 Jul 2018

Myerscough College learners dominate the shortlists for the 2018 Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year.


There are five Myerscough learners in the twelve finalists for the annual event, that celebrates the best student greenkeepers in the country, and they now go through to the final in September. All of the Myerscough finalists are studying either a Level 2 or Level 3 apprenticeship, at golf clubs across the country.

John Scurfield, Dan Dooley and Daniel Ashelby are all on a six person shortlist for the main Student Greenkeeper prize, while Danny Patten and Reece Tomalin are shortlisted for the Young Greenkeeper award.

Thirty-seven candidates took part in the regional interview process, with 12 talented candidates making it through to the grand final, to be held at BIGGA HQ on 17 to 18 September.

In the main award, John Scurfield is 32 years of age and is first assistant at Morpeth. He is undertaking his Level 3 and hopes to go on to higher education in the future. Dan Dooley is from Mount Murray on the Isle of Man. He is 34 and has had a varied career including butchery, technical optician and carpet fitting. Daniel Ashelby is 24 and is assistant greenkeeper at Wilmslow. Daniel was an ICL Scholar at BTME this year and visits golf courses in his spare time.

For the Young Greenkeeper prize, Danny Patten is 20 and has been greenkeeping for nearly three years at Lee Park. He is a football coach in his spare time and wants to work abroad. Reece Tomalin is 18 and has been at Trentham for two years. Reece was the first ever ‘trailblazer’ standard apprentice, registered on the Level 2 Certificate in Golf Greenkeeping.

Myerscough College Employer Services Manager, Lee Price said: "We deliver apprenticeships and work-based greenkeeping qualifications to learners across the country and it’s amazing to see the progression and achievements of our students.

'’We are extremely proud to be so well represented again in this year’s finals and wish everyone the very best of luck with the competition."

Stuart Green, head of member learning at BIGGA, said: “I really enjoy the Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year selection process as it allows me to travel the country and meet some of BIGGA’s most ambitious and talented student greenkeepers.

‘’Each year I’m astounded by the depth of knowledge and enthusiasm for the industry shown by our candidates and it’s heartening to see the future of the industry is in such safe hands."

Up for grabs at the grand final will be the 30th Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year award and the 3rd Toro Young Student Greenkeeper of the Year award.

Each year the awards enable BIGGA, turf maintenance manufacturer Toro, and distributor Reesink Turfcare, to celebrate those talented young greenkeepers who are dedicating themselves to a career within the industry.

David Cole, Reesink Turfcare managing director, said: “As we approach our 30th award presentation, the popularity and appeal of the competition endures and continues to exceed expectation. Entries were up this year with over double the amount from employer nominations. This shows the commitment to career learning from golf employers, course managers and head greenkeepers, as well as demonstrating their faith in the abilities of their students.

“The introduction of the ‘Young’ category, now in its third year, has helped reinvigorate the original intentions of this pioneering programme, which were to attract young people to a career in greenkeeping and support their education in the sector.

‘’This has been done by supporting learning and providing career-developing experiences as prizes to open up their global ‘world of golf’ perspective and opportunities for their future. This is the start of an exciting journey for our 2018 nominees.”

by Dave Salmon


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