World Skills finalists announced - British Florist Association

World Skills finalists announced

WorldSkills UK is a set of dynamic skills competitions for young people and adults, designed and delivered by industry experts.
Worldskills UK run each year in over 70 skills across the UK. Top scorers from across the regional heats and selection events are invited to compete at National Finals at WorldSkills UK Live.

Visit World Skills UK for free.

It’s the UK’s largest skills, apprenticeships and careers event held on 21-23 November 2019 at the NEC Birmingham.

It is also where the UK National Finals of the WorldSkills UK Competitions are held. The best of the best trainee and apprentices are selected from regional heats  and compete at the highest level in their chosen skills. From stone masonry to floristry, media make up to landscape gardening, the competitions give you a chance to witness exceptional talents.

To visit WorldSkills UK LIVE go to www.worldskillsuk.org and register for free tickets.

As always we have so much admiration for the eight competitors below, who have proved themselves to be top scorers over the six heats and to win a place at the WorldSkills UK Final Live is a great achievement.

To compete in front of thousands of people over two days, making five items of which two are surprise items, takes a lot of courage and expertise. The experience, the atmosphere and the feedback from the UK Judges Guild judges is, worth every minute.  It is an enormous learning curve and we wish them all the best whatever the outcome!

Charlotte Dodds

Charlotte Dodds , Sheffield, Jo Biddle World Skills UK finals

Charlotte is 22 years old and works at The Bespoke Flower Shop and trained at Sheffield College.
Charlotte enjoys competing and enter Worldskills because she wanted to push herself further, develop her skills and develop her confidence.
Charlotte’s favourite task at the Sheffield College Heat was the arrangement for the entrance to an art exhibition. 

She enjoyed creating a structure in her design and loved working with the Calla lilies which can be bent to add different shapes to the design. Charlotte and everyone is proud of what she has achieved to date and she her message to others considering competing  “to just do it, you may think that you aren’t ready and not good enough yet but you learn so much from taking part and you will be proud of what you can achieve! ”

Reneta Egan Wyer

Reneta Egan Wyer World Skills UK finals

Renata came to the UK in 2011 to study Horticulture, which led her to Floristry where she completed a Level 2 fast track at Pershore College.

After working in a local successful florist for 2 years, Renata became ambitious to develop further skills so started her Level 3 Advanced Technical Diploma at Moreton Morrell College in 2018.

Jen Jones

Jen Jones World Skills UK finals

Jen is 26 years old and trained at Moreton Morrell College.

Although Jen already has a Masters Degree in Healthcare Management she loves being creative and wanted to do something she loved everyday.  Having done a night class in floristry she fell in love!  She has now just completed her Level 2 at Moreton Morrell College.

Jen entered Worldskills to push herself out of her comfort zone and try some different techniques and styles that she would not normally do. This is her first competition and what she has learnt from the experience is to be prepared and practice!!

Jodie Owen

Jodie Owen World Skills UK finals

Jodie’s favourite floristry techniques are doing anything foam free and loves doing large installations. 

She is inspired by some of the designers based in London who are doing exciting things and follows several of them on Instagram.

Kara Halford

Kara Halford World Skills UK finals

Kara is 21, works at J & K Floral Designs and trained at the Academy of Floristry, Bournemouth.

Kara has entered the Worldskills heats before and wanted to see if should do better and improve her skills. Her favourite piece from the heat was the arrangement and says she went totally funky with lots of different colours and textures

Kara feels its amazing to have gained a place in the Final and to know she was in the top 8 throughout the country  and says “it’s a great feeling to have”. Her friends and family are very proud of her and have helped and supported her throughout the process. 

Claire McAuley

Claire McAuley World Skills UK finals

Clare is 24 and works at Floral Creations, Comber and trained at CAFRE College, Greenmount Campus.
Clare entered Worldskills because her Tutor thought it would benefit me, she has entered before and loves the competition because no one knows what flowers they are getting and pieces are created under the same conditions so no one person has an advantage.

She was expecting to get feedback but not to win her heat!  Clare is very excited to have won a place in the Final and sees it as an opportunity to network with other florists and improve her knowledge and skills.
Clare’s family and friends are thrilled for me and the customers in the shop are so supportive.  Clare would love to work in television in the future presenting a show based on floristry and the industry.
Her message to anyone considering entering in the future is “Definitely enter! It’s well worth it and the feedback you get is always great to help your skill and your knowledge.  I would really recommend the skills competition to anyone wanting to grow!”

Mary Snee

Mary Snee World Skills UK finals

Mary is 32 and works for Regency Flowers, Leamington Spa and trained at Moreton Morrell College.
Mary entered Worldskills on the recommendation of her Tutor and she was hesitant as she had not been doing floristry for very long, but thought should get the experience without any pressure  or expectation to achieve anything!!

Mary was stunned when she won her heat and it made her feel glad that she decided to take the plunge and enter.
Mary’s family and friends are really pleased and proud of me for having done well in a competition so soon after beginning my career change to floristry.
Mary is going to continue with her training and starting Level 3 this autumn and continuing working at Regency flowers and building her experience, learning and taking opportunities that expand my knowledge.
Her advice to anyone considering entering in the future is “Don’t feel too nervous because you think it’ll be bad if you don’t do well. Having spoken to some highly decorated florists in the industry, they have all told me that there have been competitions which they have absolutely bombed! But they also say that those were the best learning experiences. So even if you did do badly in a competition it doesn’t mean one day you may reach the top of your industry and might actually help you to get there – so take the plunge, try your best, don’t have any expectations and see just what comes of it.”

Naomi Carolan

Naomi Carolan at World Skills UK finals

Naomi works for Willow & Blooms in Newbury and has been there almost 5 years she started competing last year to give herself a challenge and says “ this was a huge learning curve and led to me training in my level 3 qualification with Keits which I will complete by the end of this year”
Naomi says she enjoys the challenge of competing, it encourages her to learn as much as possible and also to practice different techniques.

Competing for a place in the Shanghai Squad at WorldSkills UK

To enter a WorldSkills international competition, competitors must be under the age of 23 on the
first day of competition and the next international competition is in Shanghai in 2021.
In order for Floristry to be represented we must have age eligible competitors to train and the
following florists performed extremely well in the heats and have been invited to perform at the
Final alongside the finalists above – Not for a medal but for a place in the Squad.

Hannah Beckley

Hannah is 18 years old, works at Silver Birch florist, Evesham and has trained at Moreton Morrell College. Hannah entered Worldskills to try to further her knowledge in competitions as she sees it as a great way to improve and become a better florist and finds the feedback from the Judges extremely useful.
Hannah feels nervous and excited about competing at the Final but is looking forward to networking with other florists and improving her own skills. Hannah’s family, colleagues and friends are very proud of her achievement of reaching the final. Hannah’s ambitions include be able to have the opportunity to create unusual designs on a regular basis for maybe cat walks, getting known in the industry but also keeping an open mind and her options open.

Emily Acutt

Emily was inspired by her first floristry experience in her Auntie’s flower shop.  She fell in love with the buckets of amaryllis and eucalyptus and the mayhem of festive fun that comes with a busy flower shop.  Emily studies at Kingston Maurward College and feels she has grown in confidence, ability and developed her passion and love for this amazing career.

Emily says that “entering competitions has really ignited my enthusiasm, I just love the energy and buzz when in the competition area. I like to work on detailed and intricate designs and in particular enjoy using different techniques and love weaving”
Emily sees the final as an opportunity to learn new skills and meet so many talented and inspiring florists on my floral journey.  She cannot wait to showcase my talents at such a prestigious competition area.

Clara entered world skills because she was given the opportunity and encouraged by her college, She thought it would be a great chance to better herself as a florist and to learn more skills within the competition and from others. She feels it’s a good way to meet new people within the floristry industry.

Clara says “If I had any tips or encouragement for anyone thinking about entering it would be definitely go for it! Always think outside the box when creating your design and always believe in yourself! 

Clara’s plans for the future would be to have her own business.

Our thanks as always to our sponsors who make this competition possible

Tens of thousands of young people arrive at the NEC Birmingham to have a go at skills experiences, meet colleges and employers, watch the WorldSkills UK Skills Competition finals, listen to inspirational talks and discover amazing career opportunities.

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