Becoming an apprentice

Whether you're working in a hands-on role with horses on a yard, or you're working within the equine industry in a business role, our apprenticeship programme offers a range of qualifications to help you upskill in your chosen career path.

In partnership with our training provider Sport Structures, British Dressage offers a range of apprenticeships aimed at anyone working within the equine industry who is looking to develop new skills and gain a qualification in the area of the business they currently work in. We offer apprenticeships from level 2 up to level 5, meaning we have options for everyone from those at the start of their career to more experienced individuals who are looking to move into a managerial role.

British Dressage currently offers six apprenticeships: Equine Groom (level 2), Senior Equine Groom (level 3), Business Administrator (level 3), Multi-Channel Marketer (level 3), Team Leader/Supervisor (level 3), Operations/Departmental Manager (level 5).


What is an apprenticeship?

In short, it’s a real job, with hands-on experience, a salary and the chance to train while you work. Earn and learn at the same time, with at least 20% of your time spent in off the job training with a training provider. Train to be fully competent in your chosen occupation funded through contributions from the government and your employer. 

How do I become an apprentice?

To undertake an apprenticeship you need to be employed in a role, not in full time education, with a contract of employment, job description and title. If you aren't currently in employment, you can view the current roles that are available and offering an apprenticeship on our apprenticeship jobs board. If you are employed but your employer doesn't currently offer apprenticeship opportunities, you can direct them to our apprenticeship information for employers, which will give them all the information they need on how they can get involved.

What is a British Dressage Apprenticeship?

All six nationally recognised apprenticeships are a unique blend of practical and theoretical learning with the chance to take advantage of existing BD qualifications. By completing an apprenticeship with us you will also have the opportunity to undertake added value experiences throughout the year, such as attending high value shows (home CDI) and yard visits.

These apprenticeship are unlike traditional rigid programmes. We want to support your aspirations within equestrianism in whichever area you choose. Training is delivered by a carefully selected team of qualified tutors using high-quality resources and innovative interactive technology to document and evidence your progress throughout the programme. During the programme, if you discover a specific aptitude for an area of your course, you can undertake extra activities to help explore your passion and develop your own bespoke learning experience.


Which level is right for me?

Level 2 (Intermediate) Apprenticeships: they are generally agreed to be equivalent to 5 GCSE passes. This level is great for gaining industry experience whilst building essential skills, important for future careers in the sector. This level will help you take your first steps on your chosen career path.

Level 3 (Advanced) Apprenticeships: these are generally agreed to be the equivalent of 2 A-Level passes. This level is the next step up, giving you higher levels of theoretical knowledge and more industry exposure. Upon completion, you'll get a chance to secure permanent employment at the company you're working at. 

Typical requirements: completed a level 2 apprenticeship, or have 5 passes at GCSE.

Level 4 and 5 (Higher) Apprenticeships: Level 4 is generally agreed to be equivalent to a foundation degree, a Higher National Certificate (HNC), or the first year of an undergraduate degree. Level 5 is generally agreed to be equivalent to a full degree. This higher level of education will help you train for a highly skilled job, providing theoretical and practical experience to improve your employability. This type of apprenticeship offers role-specific training as well as potential career advancements.

Typical requirements level 4: completed an advanced apprenticeship, hold a level 3 NVQ/SVQ qualification, have a BTEC National qualification, or 2 passes at A-Level.

Typical requirements level 5: completed a minimum of level 3 qualifications, such as a level 3/4 (advanced/higher) apprenticeship, A-Levels, BTEC or NVQ.

How do I apply?

Register your interest below to keep up-to-date with BD apprenticeships.


Have questions?

We have put together a list of frequently asked questions on how you can get involved in the BD Apprenticeship programme, covering eligibility, roles available and benefits.