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Strathpeffer agricultural apprentice shortlisted for major national award

By Iona M.J. MacDonald

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Reese Houston, from Strathpeffer.
Reese Houston, from Strathpeffer.

A Strathpeffer apprentice has been shortlisted in the Awards for Land-based and Aquaculture Skills (the ALBAS).

Reece Houston explained how growing up around land-based machinery 'fuelled' his interest in the industry.

He has now completed his Scottish Vocational Qualification (SVQ) in land-based engineering agricultural machinery at Scotland's Rural College, Oatridge. Reece did all of this whilst also working as an apprentice for Philip Scott at Ravenhill, in Dingwall.

He said: “Having been brought up to help within the family business, I had many opportunities to repair and maintain land-based machinery. Although this was smaller machinery in comparison to the stuff I work on nowadays, it fuelled my interest in this industry.”

The ALBAS are run by Lantra Scotland, and are taking place at the Crieff Hydro on March 7.

Host for the evening will be the Red Shepherdess, otherwise known as Hannah Jackson, a farmer, public speaker, writer, adventurer and photographer.

Industry categories at this year’s ALBAS cover agriculture, animal care, aquaculture, equine, game and wildlife, horticulture, land-based engineering and trees and timber.

Dr Liz Barron-Majerik, director of Lantra Scotland said: “Our ALBAS have an important role to play in highlighting the achievements of new entrants and career changers in our sector, and in showing people the benefits of skills development and partnership working. I would like to say a heartfelt congratulations to every one of this year’s finalists and wish them good luck at the ALBAS ceremony in March, but I’d also like to say a big ‘well done’ to all of our nominees.

"We had a record number of nominations which were of a very high standard indeed. We are also grateful to the independent industry figures who are our judges, to training providers and employers who submit the nominations, and of course to all our generous supporters who make our event possible”.

Tickets for the awards ceremony are available from Lantra Scotland on 01738310164 or scotland@lantra.co.uk

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