It’s all about teamwork. We are a group of talented and creative gardeners living and working on the Isle of Wight. We pride ourselves in being professional in our work and attentive to our customers needs. Combined we have many years of relevant training and experience, qualifications and knowledge, which we can draw upon for your garden or outdoor project.
To speak to us call our office on 01983 597935
CRAIG RATCLIFF. Designer, landscaper and gardener.
Founder and company owner. Craig is a garden designer, landscaper and organic gardener. His interest in gardening formed in childhood whilst helping his stepfather in the family garden. In 1999 Craig started his horticultural career working with ‘Clifton Nurseries’ in Maida Vale and ‘London Gardens’ in Chiswick. In 2004 Craig established his own landscape gardening business, and in 2006 relocated the business with his family to the Isle of Wight. Many gardens later, in 2011 Craig suffered a back injury. Whilst this was life changing, it did give him some valuable space and time to reflect and focus on developing and growing his successful business. C.A.R. Gardens is now a national and local multi-award winning company.
In 2016, Craig enjoyed assisting Matthew Wilson’s team for a day on his RHS Chelsea Flower Show garden. Craig also enjoys spending time with his family and friends and keeping active with various sports. He enjoys a plant based diet and aspires for the gardening business to not only be organic- but to be Veganic!
Craig has a BA Honours degree in 3D Design: Ceramics.
“It is my business aspiration to offer and supply the very best in garden design, landscaping and maintenance on the Isle of Wight, whilst creating sustainable, fulfilling and rewarding employment.”
WARREN OLDERSHAW. Garden designer, gardener and plant-person.
Warren is an award winning garden designer, graduating from the Isle of Wight College in 2006 with a diploma in horticulture gaining a double distinction. Since this successful study Warren has worked with C.A.R. Gardens gaining further experience and knowledge in garden design, landscaping and caring for customer’s gardens. In November 2012 The Chemotherapy Garden at St. Mary’s Hospital on the Isle of Wight was awarded a national award, a garden which Warren designed, helped to build and maintained on a regular basis. In 2015 this garden also won a Wight in Bloom Award.
Warren has enjoyed working with and for Alan Titchmarsh on planting plans and landscape designs for his Isle of Wight garden. He is a friend of the ‘Society of Garden Designers’ and has enjoyed a rose pruning course with David Austin.
“…a garden is about visual beauty, but also smell, surprise, tranquility and fun…”
DAVID COOPER. Head gardener.
David joined the C.A.R. Gardens team in early 2011 and brings with him a long career in horticulture. David spent many years working for Guildford Borough Council and Sutherland Memorial Park which gained accolades under his leadership. Before joining C.A.R. Gardens David worked 4 years with another landscaping company on the Isle of Wight.
David has many qualifications in horticulture, turf culture and groundsman-ship, and has successfully completed a Supervisors Development Course. David is our sure-hand.
“I consider myself fortunate to have spent the majority of my life engaged in all aspects of horticulture and turf culture; working in harmony with the seasons and the living landscape.”
SAM BAXTER. Head landscape gardener and trainee foreman.
Sam started working with C.A.R. Gardens in March 2008 after completing his A Levels, working along side Craig and Warren and he quickly proved himself as a valuable asset, both in the gardening and landscaping teams. Whilst working full time with us he studied in the evenings to successfully complete a Diploma Level 3 in Site Carpentry.
In 2015 Sam successfully completed a degree in Product Design at Lincoln University, and returned to work with us in January 2016. He has also successfully trained to use a chainsaw. Sam is one of our First Aiders trained in first aid at work.
“I like enjoying the feeling I’ve done a good days work, and seeing the difference i have made at the end of each day.”
JUDITH BETCHLEY. Head gardener, plants-person and gardening staff supervisor.
Judith joined us in the summer of 2013 after working 12 years with another gardening company on the Isle of Wight. She is a skilled and professional gardener and a real asset to the company.
Judith has been passionate about gardening since her twenties and has gained horticultural qualifications along the way. Judith was also employed by the Isle of Wight College, working in the horticultural department assessing apprentices and ensuring they gain the qualifications they deserve. Working with us and the college has given her a great opportunity to pass on her knowledge and passion.
In 2016, Judith enjoyed assisting Matthew Wilson’s team on his RHS Chelsea Flower Show garden.
“’Horticulture as a subject I find I am always learning and I aspire for this to continue, …. I am hard working, reliable, professional, skilled, friendly and I like to have a laugh.”
ANDY LOCKE. Gardener and supervisor.
Andy joined the C.A.R. Gardens team in early 2015 and brings with him a long career in horticulture, and remembers helping out in the garden from the age of six. After training at the Isle of Wight College and working at local garden centres, he spent twenty two years working for Wight Salads, twelve as a supervisor and was responsible for overseeing the work of around 20 people. During this time Andy helped with pest and disease monitoring of crops, utilising organic techniques.
Andy is a great asset to the company, being reliable, dependable and giving his 100%.
Andy has 3 City and Guilds horticultural and RHS qualifications. He has also successfully trained to use a chainsaw.
“I would like to be successful in what I do, continue to improve and learn new techniques, and be proud of what I have achieved.”
CAITLIN DAY. Gardener.
Caitlin joined the C.A.R. Gardens team in the spring of 2019 and primarily works with our garden maintenance service. She also helps out seamlessly with the landscaping and design teams when called upon.
Before joining our team Caitlin enjoyed 7 years horticultural experience having worked in a nursery and garden centre on the Island. She was highly respected and trusted by returning visitors for her opinions, knowledge and customer care. She continues to strive to exceed customer expectations.
Caitlin is a friendly, confident and sociable team member, appreciating the outdoors and nature. She welcomes new challenges and is a keen kinaesthetic learner.
Whilst working with us Caitlin is studying a RHS course to add further to her knowledge. Caitlin has also studied the Italian language.
“I love getting to know new people and i’m excited working with a team of people with mutual interests.”
REEF BOORMAN. Landscape labourer and trainee gardener.
Reef started working with C.A.R. Gardens in November 2019. He came to us looking to pursue and develop a career on the Island and keen to move in a new direction. Whilst he starts his full-time working life with us he will be assisting the landscaping and gardening teams.
Reef has previously studied Graphic Design BTEC and passed with high grades. He has completed Landscape Design on a Learn Direct course and is currently studying RHS Level 2.
In 2020 Reef won a competition, designing a planter for the Chelsea Pensioners, to be built for Chelsea Flower Show 2021. He based his concept on bee friendly planting.
“The idea of helping to transform landscaping designs from paper into reality has a huge appeal.”
RICHARD MILLS. Landscaper.
Richard started working with C.A.R. Gardens in July 2020, relocating from the West Country. He quickly demonstrated his diligence, focus and personable character and has swiftly become an invaluable member of the hard landscaping. Previous to his position with us Richard had gained valuable landscaping experience in Australia and in the UK.
He has many passions including music, playing numerous instruments and cricket to a very high standard. These talents have seen Richard travel to Northern Europe, New Zealand and Australia to train and play at professional levels.
Richard loves working outdoors, happy on his own or in a cohesive team, has an eye for detail, has a thirst for knowledge, establishes rapport effortlessly and is physically very fit. All in all a perfect landscaper.
“…landscaping has become something of a passion in a life full of many passions and jobs.”
Tina Lott. Office administrator.
Tina started working with C.A.R. Gardens in April 2021 and is now our first point of contact in the office, dealing with any enquiries with professionalism, efficiency and friendliness. A proven cohesive team member, enriching the office experience and support whilst boosting the connection between all colleagues, in all departments.
Bringing with her a high level of competency from working in various departments including human resources, book-keeping, reception, retail, catering and housekeeping, Tina has also gained 10 years valuable experience from co-owning and running her own mobile mechanic business.
Possessing a can do attitude, you’ll find her helping out in all areas of the business. She is an enthusiastic gardener taking pride in her own garden which she enjoys with her family and adored pets. A perfect addition to help our busy multi-talented business.
“I am an observant person with a passion and understanding for the needs of others, I am excited at learning new things and not afraid of getting my hands dirty”.
Henry Austin. Gardening and landscaping assistant.
Henry started working with C.A.R. Gardens in May 2021.
Neil Wood. Landscape labourer.
Neil started working with C.A.R. Gardens in June 2021.
Martin Dockerill. Gardener.
Martin started working with C.A.R. Gardens in June 2021.