Wood craftsmen in the workshop at Hughenden, Buckinghamshire National Trust Images - Mark Saunders

National Trust to bolster country’s heritage crafts with country-wide apprenticeships

Image: Wood craftsmen in the workshop at Hughenden, Buckinghamshire National Trust Images (Mark Saunders)

Training in stonemasonry, carpentry and joinery will be provided by the National Trust at twelve of its locations in an effort to close the skills gap.

Training in heritage skills such as stonemasonry, carpentry and joinery is to be offered to apprentices in twelve National Trust locations across the country.

The programme, to be taught by heritage skills professionals, is the result of partnership between The National Trust and charitable organisation the Hamish Ogston Foundation.

Hoped to address the skills gap caused by an ageing workforce and lack of training opportunities, the Foundation has awarded £6.2 million to the National Trust for the new Heritage Crafts Apprenticeship programme.

Fifty two apprenticeships in stonemasonry or carpentry and joinery will be offered, which will result in either a Level 2 or Level 3 qualification through the government’s formal apprenticeship scheme.

The twelve places hosting the apprenticeship schemes are Attingham Park, Clumber Park, Cotehele, Fountains Abbey, Bransdale, Hardwick, Hughenden, Lacock Abbey, Lanhydrock, Lyme, Montacute House and Saltram. The programme is open to people of all ages but is particularly targeted at young people to provide them with lifelong employment opportunities.

Robert Bargery, Project Director for Heritage at the Hamish Ogston Foundation said: “Historic buildings are among Britain’s greatest assets and some of the finest are in the care of the National Trust.

“This is a chance for motivated young people to leave their mark on them, literally, and help ensure that these priceless works of art and architecture are passed to future generations in the best possible condition.

Hilary McGrady, Director-General at the National Trust added:

“Each of the extraordinary buildings and landmarks we look after is testament to thousands of hours of craft skills, and the care and dedication of generations past. Keeping these skills alive is fundamental to passing on our heritage for everyone to enjoy.’

The first cohort of apprentices will begin their training in September this year. Further information on the apprenticeships is available via the National Trust website.