What is the Conservation Skills Centre?

Our aim is to retain and develop conservation skills knowledge and expertise for the future. Through knowledge sharing we want to help others to protect and conserve their heritage assets and the natural environment around them.

Across the UK traditional building skills and rural crafts are in decline. The increasing skills shortage within the conservation sector means that knowledge is being lost, putting our heritage structures at risk. 

Our Conservation Skills Programme based at the Home Farm is a hub for education and knowledge-sharing. With more than 1000 historic structures across 9000 acres, including in-hand forestry and river lands, we have a rich, diverse and beautiful training ground for historic building and rural skills development.

What is the Coleshill Conservation Skills Programme all about?

The National Trust is committed to protecting our heritage. We need a skilled workforce to support conservation into the future and at Coleshill we are keen to help safeguard those traditional skills.

We are developing a Conservations Skills Programme, working with academic partners, sponsors and those who would like to run courses. We are also engaging with local traditional building and craft specialists and well as architects, education facilities and National Trust staff.

One of our joiners repairing an old gate

Our vision is that by 2021…

• A range of people are engaged in conservation skills

• Coleshill Home Farm is an engaging, creative and ‘hands-on’ hub for learning and for sharing knowledge. Professionals; academics; interested parties and ‘have-a-go hobbyists’ come together, gain new experiences and learn new skills.

• We are taking the Conservation Skills Programme out to those that cannot get to us. Proactive outreach activities and partnership working is integral to the programme and this expands our reach.

• We are supporting wellbeing by bringing people together, enabling physical and mental activity in a supportive setting and in green spaces.

• We are exploring the use of modern materials in heritage structures to improve energy efficiency and reduce environmental impact.

A sustainable future for Coleshill Home Farm

We have created flexible spaces to host workshops, lectures and bring together community groups.

Workshop spaces are available to let for professional craftspeople to work alongside other each other in a supportive community.

We want the future of this beautiful place to be secure, with a busy café, a bustling retail space selling items created on the courses and by our tenants, and Home Farm to once again be at the heart of the village. 

One of our joiners repairing an old gate