Tommy Walsh ran his own small building business in Hackney, East London, which specialised in hard landscaping - the part of creating gardens which don’t involve the planting. He left school and went to work with his father, who manufactured garden products and did hard landscaping.
He met the executive producer of Ground Force, while he was engaged in building work on her house. She asked his opinion on various pilots, including a new gardening challenge show, and his comments were perceptive and pertinent. She invited him to take part in a screen test with Charlie Dimmock and they both joined Ground Force.