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Level 3 Short Course | HHSS - Heritage Horticulture Skills Scheme
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Creating a Planted Area for a Heritage Site

Level 3 Heritage Qualification

FAQ

What is the Level 3 award?

The award assesses the ability to undertake all the skills necessary to create a garden on a heritage site.  It is not a designing qualification, but will involve interpreting designs and records to create a planted area.  The certificate will be issued to you when you are able to demonstrate the relevant background knowledge and linked practical skills necessary to create a planted area to agreed specifications and heritage requirements.

Do I need any prior qualifications to do the Level 3?

No, none are required, but good experience in practical horticulture at Level 2 would be a great advantage.  Experience at a lower level would mean extra time spent in training in practical skills, which would cost you more in both time and money.  You should expect a practical assessment by an experienced assessor before being accepted.

How do I register to take the qualification?

Through a local centre awarding the qualification.  If you find it difficult to find a local centre, please contact the awarding body.

What is the fee?

For a trainee already working or volunteering at a heritage site, where the site is happy to cover the training and assessments, the cost will be the registration fee of £120 (incl. VAT).

For an external trainee (ie. not an employee/volunteer at the heritage site) with prior learning at or exceeding level 2 (as outlined above) costs are estimated to be £1000 (inc. VAT).  Where extra training in individual practical skills are identified during the initial assessment, this would cost extra.

How long does the qualification take?

3 – 4 months, or longer by agreement at the site, or if extra skills training is required.

Where can I do the qualification?

The most straightforward route is where the prospective trainee is working or volunteering at a garden or park (or heritage site with a garden) which has an area they are happy for you to use for your project, a budget available for plant material etc. and an assessor who can oversee your work.

If I don’t work or volunteer anywhere can I do this in my own garden?

This would be difficult as there would need to be an assessor who could verify your work for the qualification.  Such an assessor would need to be registered with the local centre.  Contact the awarding body for more details.  A more accessible half-way house may be to study as an external trainee at a heritage site.  This would save on assessor transport costs.

How do I apply to my local heritage site to undertake the qualification with them?

Contact them before applying as it would be up to the site to decide whether as a new person ie not a previous volunteer or member of staff , you could be permitted to carry out a project.

While I am doing the qualification, will I get paid a salary or bursary?

This is a stand-alone qualification.  Unless you are already employed and your employer agrees for you to undertake the project during work time, you would be doing this qualification without any financial assistance of salary or bursary.  However, there may be grants available in your locality for training, which you would need to find out about.  You might try the local Job Centre in the first instance.

That said, the Heritage Horticulture Skills Scheme has some short-term bursaries available in 2015/16.  These MUST be completed by November 2016, so starting latest in June or early July 2016.