In its continued support and development of its staff, Ground Control once again arranged Arboricultural Awareness training for Managers who manage services in the infrastructure division.

The bespoke course was developed specifically for Ground Control, in line with industry good practice; and focused on Ground Control’s arboricultural services, within Rail, Highways, and Fencing.  The course was designed to ensure all operational managers are trained to the highest level of competence and continue to deliver outstanding customer service.

Arb Awareness training 2024

To achieve this, Ground Control enlisted the expertise of leading trainers Chris Cooper Abbs, Matt Brooker, and Simon Cox.  In addition to being top of their game in arboricultural training, Chris, Matt, and Simon are highly respected in the industry as co-authors and contributors to the Arboricultural Association industry good practice publications:

Industry Code of Practice for Arboriculture – Tree work at Height

Industry Technical Guides:

  • TG1: Tree Climbing and Aerial Rescue
  • TG2: Use of Tools in the Tree
  • TG3: Rigging and Dismantling.

The two-day course comprised practical demonstrations and theoretical sessions that included:

  • Tree biology
  • Recognising defects, and ill health
  • Ground-based chainsaw operations
  • Industry good practice (FISA/AFAG)
  • Equipment selection
  • PPE
  • Acts, regulations & ICOP
  • AA Technical Guides
  • Supervision and auditing of operations
  • Fungi, pests & diseases
  • Tree identification & survey
  • Aerial-based chainsaw operations

Ground Control Arb Awareness training 2024


Austin Brown, Ground Control Infrastructure Director commented:

As a principal contractor to the UK’s rail and road network providers, we take seriously our role in keeping transportation links, clear, safe, and fit for purpose. 
Investing in developing our teams is paramount to this, enabling us to exceed customer expectations through an empowered workforce. 
Our teams are learning from the best, to be the best they can be at what they do. This is not only through the most current aerial arb and felling practices, but also through scientific knowledge of trees, and how to diagnose and manage vegetation, in a way that provides optimum value to our client, whilst respecting the environment and sustaining ecosystems.

Gavin Rowe, Ground Control Infrastructure Support Manager commented:

As always, it is a pleasure to partner with Chris, Matt, and Simon, to ensure Ground Control Managers are receiving the highest level of training in relation to our industry, and the required good practice.  This course is a great opportunity to support and develop our operational managers, and whether a novice to Arboriculture, or with 25 x years experience, all our Managers found the course both enjoyable and educational.

Delegate feedback:

I am going in to my Level 4 arboriculture course later in the year, and this was a great start, and very interesting.

Thank you for organising the Arb Awareness course, it was genuinely insightful, and I learned a lot.  You can tell great efforts have been made to make the course as relevant and specific as possible with minimal additional “faff”.


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