Callum named top apprentice

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A young Arbroath trainee has been named the overall winner at a Scottish awards ceremony for land-based and aquaculture apprentices.

Callum Low (19), a game and wildlife trainee was the overall winner of the awards, Modern Apprentice of the Year and Learner of the Year in his category at the annual Lantra Scotland Land-based and Aquaculture Learner of the Year Awards 2015.

Callum has been a busy man in recent months, completing a Modern Apprenticeship Level 2 in gamekeeping at North Highland College UHI while working at Invermark Estate, a 55,000 acre sporting estate in the heart of Angus, owned by Lord Dalhousie. Callum plays an integral role supporting Gary Maclennan, Invermark’s head gamekeeper, undertaking a variety of challenging roles from vermin control and deer and grouse management to helping supervise commercial shooting days.

Callum said: “I am delighted to win these award. It is an honour and culminates what has been a challenging but very rewarding year for me working as a gamekeeping apprentice at Invermark Estate. I would like to thank my employer Lord Dalhousie for giving me this opportunity, as well as my tutors and mentors at North Highland College UHI. Over the next few years I’d like to broaden my knowledge and eventually secure a head game-keeper role at a major estate in Scotland. I believe that winning these award will give me the recognition I need to go on and succeed in my chosen profession.”

A spokesperson for North Highland College UHI added: “Callum is an exceptionally talented gamekeeping apprentice, and thoroughly deserves taking top spot this evening. We put his name forward for this award not only because of his raw talent, but because he has shown a responsibility, maturity and a level of leadership beyond his years. Callum is an excellent role model for young people coming into the profession and we all wish him the very best for the future.”

Celebrity chef Nick Nairn also gave the keynote speech and reminded the audience the importance of fostering young talent. He said: “Celebrating the achievements of learners is key in any industry. Good training is crucial to developing a well-run agricultural and food and drink sector across the country. And here in Scotland we have so much to be proud of right across the industry.”