• A traditional building skills course led to an apprenticeship opportunity from one of its instructors

Organised by Wrexham’s Traditional Building Skills Programme and held at Coleg Cambria’s Bersham Road site, the traditional building skills courses are provided free through Wrexham Council.

Plasterer student Wesley Jackson has attended several of the Traditional Building skills courses to upskill and learn more about traditional construction methods.

Wesley has been especially interested in learning more about the broad variety of methods of working with lime.

He said: “There was lots of information packed into the courses and we were encouraged to ask lots of questions. I’ve already been using the skills learned on the course.”

Ned Sharer, one of the course instructors, was impressed by Wesley’s knowledge and enthusiasm, and has since offered him an apprenticeship.

Chad Davies, a lecturer at Coleg Cambria working with the Traditional Building Skills Team said: “The courses have an emphasis on pre 1919 buildings. They are varied and based on traditional construction methods, ranging from advanced hot mix lime mortars, lead bossing, roofing and flashing, traditional paints, damp in old buildings, including pricing conservation works, as well as accredited courses such as a Level 3 Award in Energy and Efficiency.”

Janine Beggan, who runs The Traditional Building Skills programme, said: “With our traditional skills courses we are aiming to increase the skillset of workers in this industry locally, particularly here in North Wales where there is a shortage in the skilled construction workforce.

“The industry is buoyant at the moment, and we would like to see more plasterers and construction works, learning these traditional skills that will hopefully lead to further opportunities for work and an upskilled workforce.

“Courses are run throughout the year so make sure you keep an eye out on their content and dates.”

Latest courses on offer over the next few months are as follows:

  • Damp in old buildings – July 23
  • Pricing Conservation – August 9
  • Accredited Level 3 Award in Energy and Efficiency – July 29/30

For more information on the series Traditional Building Skills programmes with Wrexham Council, you can contact the Traditional Building skills team via email: TBS@Wrexham.gov.uk.

This project has received funding from Cadwyn Clwyd Rural Development Agency, through the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Welsh Government.

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