Building Craft Apprenticeship

Building Skill in Craft

Duration: 8 months

Bursary: £1000 per month


Our Building Craft Apprenticeship gives practical experience in traditional building crafts 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.

What you will be doing: 

The course starts with an intensive 3 week Summer School taking place in London and Scotland. Your first week in London will include drawing classes, geometry and structure exercises as well as architectural tours. Following the first week, you will travel to the Dumfries House Estate in Scotland, where your second week will be craft workshops with master craftspeople, including in: stonemasonry, joinery and timber framing, thatching, lime plastering and pargetting.  The Summer School ends with a week-long design workshop. This includes public consultations, design modelling and technical drawing. Local Residents and a panel of experts are drawn together to choose the winning design, which is then built as part of a ‘Live Build’ .

After the Summer School you will return to the Dumfries House Estate to take part in your first placement on the ‘Live Build’.  Here you will work alongside other Building Craft Apprentices and construction professionals to gain first-hand experience on-site. 

Once you have completed the Live Build you will then move on to placements with master craftspeople working on traditional new building schemes and conservation projects across the UK. 

Who is this course for?

We welcome applications from craftspeople who have studied any of a wide variety of building crafts including: stonemasonry, joinery, bricklaying, roofing and tiling, plastering, thatching, metalwork and painting and decorating. However we ask that applicants have qualified with either:

  •  A United Kingdom NVQ/SVQ Level 2 or 3 or equivalent from a Centre of Vocational Excellence  


  • An equivalent qualification in traditional building skills from a recognised authority


  • An equivalent amount of work experience in your chosen craft

Important information:

  • All participants receive a monthly bursary of £1,000 to cover travel, subsistence and accommodation costs whilst on placements
  • Travel and accommodation costs for the Summer School are covered by the Prince’s Foundation
  • This is a full time course.  Apprentices will be working up to 35 hours a week, with weekend work at times (especially during the Live Build)
  • Course start date: 11th July 2016. Interviews will take place late March/early April 2016

What qualifications do you receive?

  • Heritage Skills NVQ Level 3

Key Skills and Outcomes from attending the programme: 

  • How to set-up and run your own small business-through attendance of business skills course
  • Learn new skills in traditional building crafts through attending the Summer School 
  • Workplace experience through training placements 
  • The chance to work with some of the country’s leading master craftspeople 
  • Support with further training courses and employment opportunities

To Apply:

  • Download the application form on the right of this page in the related documents section or contact Lauren Banks to request an application to be posted to you. 

Deadline for submitting your application and supporting documents is: Friday 26th February 2016

Post them by recorded delivery to:

Prince’s Foundation for Building Community
c/o Lauren Banks,
19-22 Charlotte Road
London, EC2A 3SG

Or application forms can be emailed to:

For more information please contact:
Lauren Banks, Education Administrator
020 7613 8582

The work placements…have enabled me to learn from specialists. I feel I have made lasting contacts within my craft with people I may never have had the chance to meet and I’m sure will prove invaluable in my future career.

Johanna Welsh, Pargetter - Building Craft Apprentice 2012/13

From finishing the course I have been offered a role as lead hand carpenter and joiner. I will be able to pass on the skills I have learnt.

Stephen Jefferson, Carpenter – Building Craft Apprentice 2012/13