AMY Wood has been appointed to the position of farm apprentice by the National Trust in Windermere, Lake District. This is the first level-three farm apprenticeship to be taken on by the organisation as it looks to further support the future of farming in the region by offering opportunities to new entrants.

Amy commenced work in September 2021 and will now spend three days per week working with the rare breed Albion cattle on High Lickbarrow farm in Windermere, hosted by the tenant farmer at nearby Causeway Farm. She will also spend one day at Kendal College and one day with the National Trust’s local ranger team.

There were numerous applications for the role and Amy’s appointment follows a challenging selection process. The apprenticeship will run for 22 months and is being funded by the Apprenticeship Levy and a National Trust donation.

Amy was born in Kendal and, apart from some time away at university, has spent her whole life working in agriculture, including most recently a full-time job on Causeway Farm while also helping a neighbouring farmer lamb 1,200 ewes. She studied her GCSEs at The Lakes School and her A-level equivalent at Kendal College and is currently chair of the Crook Young Farmers Club. She has also invested time attending numerous seminars and night courses, covering agriculture, animal welfare, lamb survival, cattle behaviour and rotational grazing.

John Pring, countryside manager for the National Trust, believes that this is a great opportunity for the organisation to work more closely with the farming community: ‘We were very impressed with Amy, and it was immediately obvious that she has a passion for farming having taken every opportunity to increase her knowledge. ‘She will now consolidate her agricultural experience and learn about how we operate. Once she has completed her apprenticeship, there are numerous careers paths open to Amy, including becoming a tenant farmer, a farm manager, ranger or livestock manager. I am very much looking forward to helping her develop and will follow her progress with interest.’

Amy comments: ‘I originally wanted a career in sport and exercise science but after spending 18 months studying at Newcastle University, I dropped out to pursue my love of farming. My apprenticeship is well structured as I have a good mix of theory and practical experience and I’m looking forward to working closely with the National Trust to develop my skills further.’