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Heritage Craft Alliance - upcoming courses

two courses coming up this autumn, both being held at the HCA/s base at Thorp Perrow in Bedale North Yorkshire. Stone Carving for Beginners is a ten day course (1 day a week over ten weeks)starting on Friday 3rd November and Joinery Bench Skills aimed at beginners/intermediates is a five day course over 1 week in November (13-17 Nov inclusive). full details of the courses, costs and booking arrangements can be found on the HCA website

National Heritage Training Group

*Building skills for Old buildings weekend course
10th - 11th November, Bristol*

This NHTG two day course will be held in a built heritage crafts workshop in Bristol with live demonstrations and talks. There will be demonstrations in the workshop of lime mortar rendering, decorative plaster moulding, heavy post and beam construction, cruciform Jacobean window construction and more.
There will be examples of timber frame models and complex roofing styles including octagonal and hexagonal spires. There will also be displays of stone and brick walling and stone carving. There will be opportunities for delegates to have a go at some of the crafts. This event is open to anyone with an interest in built heritage: contractors, homeowners, craftspeople and students.
To book a place please contact Sophie Keegan on 01246 252 363 (please leave a message) or email

Membership Opportunity Last month the NHTG membership scheme was announced and there have been many enquiries so far. Membership is open to those whose businesses are principally engaged in providing services for the historic building sector, undertaking the conservation, repair and maintenance of Pre-1919 buildings. So if you are a contractor, material supplier, support services or trade associated federation, the NHTG aim will be to support your individual needs. Find out more about becoming a member here

Scottish Lime Centre Training events 2017

A varied programme of traditional skills training being held at their regional training centres in Fife. For more information on any of these courses see the full details that are available on their website or email them but highlights include the following:-

1 Day Rendering & Harling with Lime Date: 20 October 2017 at Merryhill Training Centre, Fife
Time: 09.30 - 16.30
This course will enable you to apply a variety of lime render finishes to a wide range of backgrounds including matching to existing finishes
The practical element of this course will cover a range of backgrounds and include undertaking small ‘patch’ repairs to existing finishes. Both hand cast and mechanical applications will be demonstrated and attendees will gain an understanding of a range of surface finishes that can be achieved.
Course Suitability
This course is aimed at those working within the construction industry who have had practical building experience and trowel skills.

Maintaining Traditional Buildings Date: 27 October 2017 at Charlestown Workshops, Fife
Time: 10.00 - 15.00
Come and join us for an information packed day on maintaining your traditional home, learn what you can tackle yourself and what might be better achieved by tradesmen and women. Develop a planned maintenance programme for your home so you are always on top of the issues and are vigilant to potential problems. A must for anyone who owns or is responsible for a traditional building.
The seminar provides the perfect starting point if you are considering undertaking some simple repairs yourself or will enable you to speak your builder’s language and be confident that you are being given the correct advice.
This seminar will outline the maintenance that traditional buildings require and attendees will gain an understanding of traditional building techniques and the correct materials to use when undertaking repairs. This will also be an excellent opportunity to speak to the Scottish Lime Centre Trust’s expert tutors about your project, attendees are welcome to bring along photos and mortar samples for some specific advice.

Rubble Wall Building Date: 1 - 2 November 2017 Venue: Merryhill Training Centre, Fife
Time: 09.30 - 16.30 This practical two day course will equip you to set out, construct and finish a traditional rubble wall using a variety of building stones and traditional lime mortars. The importance of laying the stones correctly and the use of pinning stones will be emphasised so that no more than 30% of the volume of the wall is mortar!
The content of this workshop provides part of the underpinning knowledge required for assessment and accreditation of SQA National Unit 3 – ‘Conservation Masonry’.

CE2 Masonry consolidation techniques for the repair of historic buildings and structures Date: 17th November 2017 at Charlestown Workshops, Fife
Time: 09.30 – 16.30
Cost: £180 + VAT
This workshop is the follow on course from CE1 Introduction to lime based mortars and traditional materials for the repair of civil engineering structures and covers two major techniques for consolidating masonry structures, namely grouting (with a liquid mortar) and concealed crack stitching. These are techniques that may be applicable for the repair of masonry arch bridges, culverts, tunnels, lighthouses, viaducts, canals, harbours, retaining walls, piers and other masonry structures which contribute so much to the richness of our heritage.
This one day workshop focusses on remedying voids in traditional masonry buildings and structures in a sympathetic manner using traditional lime and natural cement bound mortars in liquid form to enable grouting. Techniques of crack stitching (for dormant cracks) will also be addressed using a variety of methods and materials to suit the various scenarios that might occur in heritage buildings and structures. This workshop is a mix of theory and practical hands-on work.
Course suitability
This course is suitable for Structural and Civil Engineers and their Technicians including those that look after our roads and railway networks, contractors working on unprotected masonry structures and ruins and custodians of our industrial heritage. This course may also be of interest to Architects and Building Surveyors dealing with ruined structures and buildings.