The first in a series of free, traditional construction and heritage skills training sessions kicks off next week as part of Fenland District Council's National Lottery-supported Wisbech High Street Project.
The project, which is funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund's Townscape Heritage scheme, is delighted to have commissioned Lincoln Conservation to deliver a programme of Traditional Construction and Repairs Skills Training sessions - initially online and later in person in Wisbech once Covid restrictions allow.
The first session is a free talk - An Introduction to Climate Change Impacts and Implications for Built Heritage - being held via Microsoft Teams on Thursday, 20 May, at 12.30pm. The talk will last around one hour including time for Q&As. There will be a live recording which will also be made available via the project's YouTube channel.
In the talk, Cathy Daly, a senior lecturer in conservation of cultural heritage from Lincoln University, will outline the potential impacts of climate change for built heritage and discuss some of the approaches that can be taken by the sector to increase resilience.
All the forthcoming sessions will be aimed at beginner level and be free of charge, funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund through the Wisbech High Street Project. They will be held around once a month up to July 2022 and available to everyone, although people living in and around Wisbech will be given priority for places where booking is required.
The Wisbech High Street Project and Lincoln Conservation have launched the sessions to help plug a gap in the availability of heritage construction training opportunities across the East of England. They will be aimed at anyone interested in developing their construction career, local property owners keen to learn about the techniques employed in the repair and maintenance of their own buildings or anyone just interested in learning about a new subject.
Working with heritage skills specialists from across the UK, Lincoln Conservation will deliver talks, workshops and sessions covering a wide range of built heritage topics, including:
Cllr Chris Seaton, Fenland District Council's Portfolio Holder responsible for Heritage, said: "There is a lot of public passion and appreciation for historic buildings, but unfortunately there is a nationwide shortage of the specialist skills needed to preserve them.
"These taster sessions seek to address the lack of heritage construction training in the region, delivering free, practical talks and workshops to residents who may go on to seek further training or property owners interested in learning how to look after their buildings."
Lincoln Conservation is a conservation consultancy and practice specialising in decorative surfaces and digital heritage in the built environment. Based at the University of Lincoln, they are dedicated to ensuring that training and education in the field of history and heritage can be accessed by a wide range of people at all levels.