Simon Holmes – Consulting Director

Simon has worked in arboriculture for over 27 years, starting in Local Authority and gaining practical experience in all aspects of estate and urban forest management.

Simon is a LANTRA independent instructor and corporate training provider to the land based industries. He is also an NPTC Assessor and has been for the last 15 years.

In 2000, Simon established Land Based Training in response to an industry requirement for specialist, professional and independent training and assessment. The company delivers a wide range of arboricultural and forestry courses. He regularly teaches and examines in partnership with leading training providers based in Southern England. He also acts as consulting director at Tree Surveys ( – specialists in a broad range of urban tree issues from development sites to pest and disease management.

Simon has successfully completed a Masters degree in Arboriculture and Urban Forestry at Myerscough College and is working on a research project investigating vitality measurements on Horse Chestnut with Bleeding Canker. Simon can regularly be seen at seminars and conferences in arboriculture and related subjects. So if you spot him do go up and say hello.

Simon undertook his first professional arboricultural qualification in 1990 – the Royal Forestry Society Certificate (RFS) in Arboriculture – followed by the National Proficiency Test Committee (NPTC) proficiency test certificates, the NEB (City and Guilds) Certificate in Amenity Forestry and the Arboricultural Association Technicians Certificate. He was awarded the Advanced Diploma in Arboriculture and Community Forest management from Middlesex University in 2001.

He has taught both theoretical and practical arboriculture at Sparsholt College in Hampshire, Capel Manor College, Enfield, London and Berkshire College of Agriculture.

Formerly a FASTCo (Forestry and Arboricultural Safety Training Council) Training Standards Officer (TSO), he served as a consultant to FASTCo and the Health and Safety Executive on working groups developing national guidance. Simon also acted as an NPTC (National Proficiency Test Council) Regional Verifier for chainsaw and arboricultural operations and served as a consultant on numerous working groups developing arboricultural and forestry awards.

During his spare time his passion is scuba diving both in the UK and abroad. Simon is a qualified PADI instructor and teaches diving when time permits. With a keen interest in photography, both on land and underwater, he is seldom without a camera at hand. He also currently rides a Triumph Tiger and has recently toured through Germany, Spain, Ireland and Vietnam.

Check out what Simon has been up to recently with the bees on Bens Beginners: