Government to announce garden apprenticeships

The UK could soon have a new generation of Alan Titchmarshes, with housing minister Margaret Beckett set to announce a new apprenticeship scheme today.

Speaking at the ParkCity conference in London, Ms Beckett will launch the £1 million scheme to educate a new batch of trainees, whose job it will be to keep Britains parks and green spaces looking their best.

The minister will explain that the role will also be important in combating one of the worlds biggest issues.

"If we really are to tackle climate change and protect both our environment and our health, green spaces need to be at the heart of our communities," she will say.

Successful applicants will get the chance to learn their trade while helping their local communities.

TV presenter and celebrity gardener Alan Titchmarsh began his horticultural career as an apprentice with Ilkley Council in 1964.

He now presents the Alan Titchmarsh Show on ITV and can be found on Radio 2 on Sunday nights.