A LOOE apprentice is among the first to graduate from the Cornwall National Landscape’s project, securing a full time role in the £1.2-million National Lottery Heritage Funded ‘A Monumental Improvement’ project.

Business admin apprentice, James Richards from Looe, achieved a Distinction in his apprenticeship.

He primarily supported activities officer Iain Rowe to deliver hundreds of exciting activities and events ranging from guided heritage walks exploring the breath-taking Cornish coastline to discovering the prehistoric landscape of Bodmin Moor.

James said: “The satisfaction of connecting people with local heritage, and helping them understand the importance of scheduled monuments sites in Cornwall, because of my work, is extremely rewarding,

“I have developed valuable skills, such as communication and marketing, as a result of this unique opportunity which will guide me through the next steps of my career.”

The project is now in its final year and protects more than 4,000 years of Cornish history, working to remove up to 38 of Cornwall’s scheduled monuments from the heritage at risk register. Sites range from Neolithic settlements and Iron Age forts to Medieval mottes and bailey castle. Some have iconic connections to Cornwall’s patron saint, St Piran, and the legendary King Arthur. This project will support these important historical sites for the benefit of future generations.

The value of the apprenticeship scheme is clear to James who, through the project, has been introduced to the cream of Cornwall’s crop of heritage professionals.

Due to partnership working and the project delivery they have had the opportunity to learn from a wide range of people during their time with Cornwall National Landscape (AONB), which is a rare opportunity for apprentices.

James has progressed successfully to full time positions with the monumental improvement project.

As the new admin officer he will continue to raise the profile of the project, with added responsibilities of communication and marketing, reaching out to new audiences and connecting them with Cornish heritage.

The Monumental Improvement partnership, Cornwall AONB Trust and wider Cornwall National Landscape team have supported both apprentices, providing learning opportunities and specific training to boost their employability upon completion of their qualifications.

To find out more about the project, visit cornwall-landscape.org/project/a-monumental-improvement