Joinery is a stand alone class or can form the first element of our full boat building course.


Ian’s router course is included in Joinery or can be taken on its own.


Lofting a 2 day theory and drawing board exercise and then on to the loft floor to loft out full scale and make up moulds. Tailor made available to loft out your own dream project.

 Practical Boatbuilding, £15,608

Download Syllabus »             This 47 week course is our main course and leads to an IBTC Diploma and the option of City and Guilds 2463 level 3. We offer the course four times a year. Dates for 2015 are:-  January 5th, April 7th, June 29th  and September 21st. All students begin in the Joinery workshop where they will learn fundamental woodworking skills. After approximately 12 weeks students move on to the boatshop where they will work in a real boatyard environment. Students will learn to interpret the designers’ drawings, loft the boat and make moulds, construct and set up a backbone, steam timber and make frames, plank up in carvel and clinker, lay decks, make spars and fit out the hull. In short a student at the end of the course should be able to build a boat.

Joinery and Furniture, £15,608

Joinery and Furniture Syllabus The majority of the duration of this course will be spent in the Joinery section of the IBTC. Participants will start with a basic joinery course of approximately 12 weeks after which they will progress to more advanced skills and joints and look at furniture design. The 47 week course will be tailored to individual skills and aspirations and should allow time for a final ‘show piece’ project. Students will be able to earn an IBTC Diploma reflecting their abilities and skills achieved.

games table

Furniture project under construction. Colin’s games table with the chess board veneers offered up prior to completion.

21March 014 pics to file 115

One of the final joinery exercises before going through to the boats shop – deck beams

Build Your Own Boat, £8,286

Download Syllabus » At the end of your 24 week course you should have completed and launched a boat of up to 5m in length. Restorations as well as new builds can also be considered subject to suitability. Your skills should allow you to build further craft with similar build techniques, as well as using the transferable nature of these skills to develop further areas of expertise. Course fees do not include materials and dependant on the complexity of your project fees may be adjusted to suit the length of time you need for your project. For example if you just want to lay the keel and fit garboards and then take your embryonic boat away to work on then a much shorter course can be arranged.

*Small Boatbuilding, £5,950 – 12 Weeks, leading to an IBTC Certificate

Download Syllabus » This is a short, intensive 12 week course and leading to an IBTC Certificate and is for those looking to develop a hobby or learn about a specific area of boatbuilding. After this course you should be able to build your own small boat. All students begin with four weeks of practical woodworking in order to build up the necessary hand skills. After that, you will learn how to set up and build a small dinghy, through constructing the backbone, setting up the moulds and planking a clinker dinghy, students also learn the techniques and skills needed to setup and build larger boats of both clinker and carvel construction.

*Woodworking Skills, £5,950

This basic joinery course of 12 weeks is the foundation element of both our 47 week Boatbuilding course and our Furniture course. In a practical way with lots of exercises you will learn how to use basic boatbuilding hand and power tools, identify woods used in boatbuilding, recognising faults and flaws in timber, using glue properly and choose woods suitable for specific jobs. It is possible to do this woodworking skills course and then to do the full boatbuilding course at a time that suits you best.


This course provides practical training in the skills and techniques needed to survey small craft. The first two weeks cover GRP and steel vessels and are followed by a week’s private study, then a further two weeks are spent on small craft systems, rigs and engineering.  The skills needed to produce high quality reports are covered throughout the course. The emphasis is on training at working boatyards to demonstrate the techniques surveyors use and to show participants as wide a range of issues as possible.  About 100 hours of preliminary study is needed using modules we supply.   We are based in Ipswich and use the facilities at Fox’s Boatyard which has a wide range of pleasure and commercial vessels.  Participants should have experience of maintaining and operating small craft, or relevant backgrounds in the marine industry. By the end of the course they should be able to carry out pre-purchase and insurance surveys and understand how to carry out MCA Coding inspections. Those who pass the final examinations can apply for Graduate Membership of the YDSA (Yacht Designers and Surveyor’s Association) which is the surveying industry’s main professional body.  The next course starts on September 7th 2015.  We also run a separate wooden boat surveying course.  For further details, contact Aidan Tuckett at email hidden; JavaScript is required or on 07765 35 2364 or Martin Evans at email hidden; JavaScript is required or on 07887 724055. Also see the course website at .


This course provides training in wooden boat surveying techniques for existing surveyors and those involved in restoring wooden vessels. It is based in Ipswich and involves the practical inspection of real vessels, with visits to various East Coast boatyards and the International Boatbuilding Training College at Lowestoft. It is not intended as a guide to boatbuilding, but when surveying it is essential to have an understanding of how boats are constructed. The course covers both traditional and composite wood boatbuilding methods. The emphasis is on developing the skills that will allow a surveyor to provide advice on cost effective restorations that preserve and maintain as much of the original craft as possible. The next course starts October 19th 2015. For further details, contact Aidan Tuckett at email hidden; JavaScript is required or on 07765 35 2364 or Martin Evans at email hidden; JavaScript is required or on 07887 724055. Also see the course website at .


*Glass Reinforced Plastics. £732

In the practical element you will first learn to lay up a GRP bow section. After releasing this from mould you will then cut holes into the sides simulating damage and learn to carry out two different types of repair. The next stage is to lay up a small deck moulding which after trimming will be bonded to the bow section. Theory will cover release systems, gel coat resins & catalysts, reinforcements, moulding techniques, identifying faults, health and safety procedures and much more. This is an intensive 4 day course and is part of the full time boatbuilding course. External delegates are welcome to join this course too.

*Rope work, Knots & Splicing. £320

Subjects covered include:

Recognise and select rope and cord to suit specific purposes on a boat.

A range of splices and whippings on traditional three strand rope.

Rope to wire splice and eye splice in modern double braid yacht rope.

Stitched and whipped eye in solid braid.

Over 30 different knots from every day to exotic.

Introduction to Traditional Rigging and Wirework Techniques – 3 day course. £460

Subjects covered include:

Identifying wire types.

Learning about tools and materials.

Hand splicing a hard eye into 10mm 6 x 19 galvanised wire rope, using a Liverpool splice.

Worming, parcelling and serving.

The board of trade wire splice.

Making and serving wire rope seizings.


*Router Course. £461

Download Details » This intensive, practical 3 day course covers an introduction to routers, router use and health and safety aspects. It is centred around building your own custom made router table and all the skills and techniques required to make comprehensive use of your router. Course requirements are that you have a router of ‘trade’ or ‘industrial’ capacity, with a half inch collet and fine height adjustment capability. This course is now also included within the full boatbuilding course.

*Basic Boat Plumbing and Electrics. £320

This course is part of the full time boatbuilding course but external delegates are welcome too. We offer this 2 day course four or five times a year and is aimed at giving students a solid grounding in basic plumbing and electrics. Electrical theory including electrical definitions, Ohms law, cables, fuses, circuits, batteries, generators, solar, wind chargers and much more. A typical marine domestic hot water system is explained along with engine cooling, fresh water & bilge pump systems, tanks and pipe work, cockpit drains etc. Marine gas systems are also introduced.

*Lofting. £160 per day

The lofting course takes designer’s drawings and develops these on the loft floor. In 3-4 days or more (dependent on the complexity of the craft to be lofted) you will learn to draw full size, correcting any minor design errors to ensure a fair hull and make softwood patterns from the full size drawing as a basis around which to construct a new boat. This course is part of the full time boatbuilding course but also available for external candidates.

*Caulking. £160 per day

This 2 day course begins with preparing the oakum bails which involved teaching the students to spin the oakum to fit the size of seam. They’re then given an introduction into the different types of caulking irons and tools used for the caulking process. We then progress to the different challenges that they may face on various vessels and the appropriate measures needed to remedy them. Finally we culminate the course by practising these methods on an actual yacht so that the students can experience caulking techniques first hand. Assessment is carried out throughout the course with feedback being given at regular intervals.

Timber Technology. £160 per day

This 1 day course is a theory session that covers: Hard and Softwood identification, properties and application in the marine industry. Seasoning, conversion, defects, marine borers, plywood and adhesives are also covered with a short session on metals to complete the day.

Introductory Welding

This course is aimed at those with little or no welding experience. Over 5 day course you will be taught how to carry out safe and effective welds in many positions using M.M.A. welding (stick welding). Instruction will also be given on issues of welding Health & Safety. The course will also include looking at other forms of welding such as MIG & TIG and various methods of cutting steel. This course is run on a hands on basis, with the emphasis on personal practice. Please contact us for prices and dates.

Tailor Made Courses. £640 per week

We also offer courses which are tailor made for individuals. Downloadable details are available for our longer courses, please contact us if you would like us to devise a course to suit your specific requirements.

All Other Courses. £160 per dayBlack Sylvia

* These courses are included in the Practical Boatbuilding course. City & Guilds enrolment and exam fees are now included in the course fees as are course materials. All figures inclusive of VAT unless stated otherwise.

Short Course dates 2015

Dates are provisional and may be altered to suit diploma course students, however once  an external delegate has booked onto a course  we will of course adhere to those  dates. Additional dates may be available by  arrangement dependant on number of  delegates etc. Let us know you requirements  and we will see what we can do. College hours are 8-4.30 Mon to Thurs and  until 12.30 on Fridays

Historic Vessel BTEC diploma level 3

– dates to be confirmed

Tool Maintenance 1 day

2015 – July 27th and November 2nd

Introduction to Woodwork 4.5 days

2015 –  July 27th – 31st and November 2nd – 6th

Router Course 3 days

2015 –  June 23rd – 25th, August 18th – 20th and December 8th – 10th

GRP 4.5 days

2015 – July 20th – 24th and September 7th -11th

2016 January 25th – 29th

Plumbing and Electrics 2 days

2015 – September 1st – 2nd and October 20th – 21st

Rope work, Knots and Splicing 2 days

2015 –  July 7th – 8th and October 13th – 14th

Introduction to Traditional Rigging and Wirework and Techniques 3 days

2015 – August 25th – 27th and November 11th – 13th

Lofting Theory 2 days

2015 – October 6th – 7th

Caulking 2 days

2015 –   July 14th – 15th, September 16th – 17th and November 18th – 19th     Download Application Form