A BUILDING restoration company in mid Essex has launched a one-of-a-kind new training programme.

Bakers of Danbury has teamed up with Priestman Associates to develop a bespoke 18-month training programme which is unique to the company.

Bakers is well-known for its conservation and repairs to period properties, including landmarks such as Westminster Abbey and St Paul’s Cathedral in London.

Its programme will include an NVQ Level 2 in stonemasonry preservation skills with a programme of heritage modules and skills.

On successful completion, Bakers says the trainees will become qualified and skilled heritage building craftsmen, and will continue to work on church projects with the opportunity for more training and promotion within the company.

Managing director Peter Smyth said: “We are proud to be actively helping to reduce the skills shortage within the construction industry, in particular the heritage sector, by creating two new places for trainee heritage building craftsman, within our church works department.

“As there isn’t an NVQ 2 available in building heritage or conservation, our unique training programme will offer new entrants into the industry the opportunity to learn skills and benefit from training they are unlike to gain anywhere else.”