Traditional Building Skills Bursaries

Here you'll find a range of training schemes that offer opportunities to become qualified, develop your understanding and gain practical skills to work on historic buildings.

This page covers:

Beyond bursaries, a wide range of training courses and qualifications are available from short courses to Specialist Applied Skills Programmes. Find out more on our Traditional Building Skills page.

Explore the range of construction apprenticeships at the GoConstruct website.

A TBSBS trainee working on stonemasonry at Gloucester Cathedral
© TBSBS

William Morris Craft Fellowship

The Fellowship programme is run by the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) and supported by Historic England. Each year the Fellows spend six months travelling the length of the country together, visiting sites and working with craftspeople, contractors and professionals. It is designed to broaden the skills and experience of craftspeople, from any trade, who want to develop their career in the repairing of historic buildings.

Find out more from the SPAB Scholars' and Fellows' blog'.

Find how to apply on the SPAB website.

Canal and Rivers Trust

Waterway Heritage Trainees are recruited across both Wales and England. Trainees gain practical skills working alongside the Canal and Rivers Trust construction teams. In the classroom, trainees gain an NVQ Level 2 in Waterway Heritage Skills along with a knowledge based qualification of the history and construction of canals and waterways.

Prince's Foundation

The Building Craft Programme gives practical experience in traditional building skills and an opportunity to gain a Heritage Skills NVQ Level 3. This course is designed for craftspeople looking to bridge the gap between basic qualifications and becoming a master craftsperson working within the heritage sector. It is supported by Historic England.

Learning stonemasonry skills on the PRINCES FOUNDATION Building Craft Programme
Learning stonemasonry skills on the Princes Foundation Building Craft Programme © Princes Foundation

Traditional Building Skills Bursary Scheme

The Traditional Building Skills Bursary Scheme ran successfully between 2006 to 2015. In total it offered 178 high quality work based placements allowing apprentices to complete their training and to gain vocational qualifications.

The evaluation report is available to download.

You can find out more about the projects the apprentices were involved in by visiting the blog on the TBSBS website and Twitter account @TTBSBS.

The scheme was funded by the HLF, run by the National Trust and supported by Historic England, Cadw and Construction Industry Training Board (CITB).

Traditional Building Skills Bursary Scheme trainees
TBSBS trainee © National Trust

The Traditional Building Skills Bursary Scheme 2012-15 Evaluation

Published 1 January 2016

This report looks at the three year extension of the TBSBS scheme and whether it achieved its aims.

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