Tell us a bit about yourself

My name is Phoebe Taylorson I’m 19 and I work as an apprentice at Middlesbrough football club which is my childhood football club that I've had a season ticket at since 2015. I got into groundskeeping after leaving sixth form half way through my first year where I was studying law politics and Spanish after I realised that I was feeling unfulfilled in what I was doing and had wanted a more hands on job. Being a lifelong Middlesbrough fan and a player since childhood with a desire for a hands on job it was the perfect match.

Have you faced any challenges being female in the industry?

I have faced many issues. I think the main being physical disadvantages due to being shorter and weaker and a male dominated industry that is less accessible for women and the fact most machinery and equipment is designed for men.

What can be done to get more females into the industry?

I think what needs to be done to get more people into the industry is to get more attention to the industry to younger people as well as highlighting the importance of the job to fans and spectators as it may build more interest to people who have never considered it as a pathway. Also to make the routes into it more clear and accessible for people interested in pursuing a career. Similarly to show people that groundskeeping isn’t just “cutting grass” and even that simply cutting grass isn’t a straight forward task as it seems to an outside perspective. There is a lot of science involved in preparing a pitch.

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

The Arsenal game was a massive step forward for the future of the industry and diversity is essential to moving forward, having people from all backgrounds and genders helps increase this. With women’s football sky rocketing in popularity it gives younger girls and women looking towards a career in football a great path.Seeing that women can work in a male dominated industry gives younger girls something to aspire to. If you can't see it you can't be it!

Have you got any advice for women and girls wanting to get into the industry?

My advice would be to go for it, rather cliche but its such a rewarding thing to see when you’ve finished a job and can look and see all your effort and time reflected within the pitch, especially being in football watching pro players in and around your hard work is very rewarding.