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INTERNATIONAL WOMENS DAY- Alexia Cantwell-Doughty

Tell me a bit about yourself

My name is Alexia I work as an apprentice at Stratford Sports Club. I was originally doing gardening a year and a half ago for a local charity 'Forest Of Hearts' and we had a job to do at Stratford Sports Club. This is where I met Nick Pepper and we got talking about grounds keeping. I never knew what a grounds person was before I met Nick. I found it very interesting he offered me an apprenticeship and I’ve loved it ever since. I've learnt how to maintain Cricket, Tennis, Bowls and Rugby pitches in my time at the Sports Club.

 

 

Have you faced any challenges being a female in the industry?

As I am a woman in the industry the challenges I have come across include being asked if I am capable to do a job (which I always am) and at one point I did question whether I was good enough. This does affect your confidence.

 

How would you suggest getting more women into the industry?

To get more people in to the industry, I believe people in the industry should always make people feel welcome and show off what a grounds person is. We should also show the positives of the job.

 

You recently took part in the ALL FEMALE grounds team at Arsenal Women's game against Tottenham - tell me a bit about this

 

I took part in the first all women’s grounds team at Arsenal in front of 60,000 people. It was an amazing experience to see what machinery they have and how they produce a top premier league football pitch from the renovation to the end result and how they keep the pitch maintained through out the year. It’s so important to get more women in the industry to show a more diverse and inclusive industry especially now we are in 2024. I hope by 2030 there are plenty more women in the industry.

 

What advice would you give to females looking to get into the industry?

The advice I would give to other women who want to be in the industry is that if you have a good work ethic, love outdoors and working with machinery its the perfect career to pursue. 

 

 

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