Help train the next generation of coppice workers

by Bill Hogarth MBE Memorial Apprenticeship Trust

About the project


Tipping Point £4,000
Second apprentice funded £8,000
Fully funded £16,000
tipping point
In-kind donations range from drinks to office supplies. We even accept homemade cakes. See what else we need!
tipping point
25 hrs
In-kind donations range from drinks to office supplies. We even accept homemade cakes. See what else we need!

More about the project

What is the social/environmental problem/issue that this project will address?
There are 3 issues this project will address: 1. There is much neglected coppice woodland in Britain which, if managed correctly could provide a valuable, continuous resource. Coppiced wood can be used for heating homes and for producing many different craft items. 2. Many heritage coppice crafts (e.g. making oak swill baskets and hazel hurdles) are in danger of disappearing unless more training is provided. 3. Unemployment among young people is at an all-time high and with rural job prospects bleak it is timely to support more young people to be entrepreneurial and to equip them with the skills to be self-employed.
Can you give us some statistics on this problem?
In 1905 215,000 hectares of English woodland were coppiced but from the 1960’s coppicing started to decline and only approximately 22,000 hectares now remain in coppice rotation. Professor Ted Collins (Professor Emeritus of Rural History in the Department of Agricultural and Food Economics at the University of Reading,) documents this decline in his report Crafts in the English Countryside: towards a future (published in 2004). His report highlights the lack of skilled coppice workers and the need for appropriate training for the craft sector. He calls for new initiatives and ways of delivering training and 'investment, commitment and most of all, imagination' if these heritage skills and crafts are to survive. He cites BHMAT as a leading example of a coppice apprenticeship scheme.
What is your solution?
The Bill Hogarth MBE Memorial Apprenticeship Trust (BHMAT) is a registered charity which aims to train a new generation of coppice workers. Since forming in 2000 we have trained over 16 apprentices and supported them to set up in business. We are looking to fund 2 new apprentices to start in 2014.
How will you deliver this?
Apprentices are placed with an experienced coppice worker for three years. They are given a small bursary, a tool grant, and specialist training. As well as a sponsor, they are appointed a mentor who will oversee their training and support the apprentice through the three years. At the end of the three years they are awarded the Bill Hogarth Coppice Diploma and will have become self-employed and will have their own coppicing business.

Get involved

Here are some great ways to get involved with the project and help out. If you have...
  • 2 minutes
    Send a friend (or 2) the link to our campaign.
  • 5 minutes
    Put the link to our campaign on your Facebook or Twitter page.
  • 15 minutes
    Tell a friend about our campaign and about the importance of coppicing our woodlands.
  • 30 minutes
    Have a look at our website and learn more about the benefits of coppicing.
  • A few hours
    Have a look at our website and do a ‘Google’ search to learn more about coppicing – its benefits and lack of training opportunities/funding.
  • Regular time commitment
    Have a think about what skills you could offer us and consider getting involved with BHMAT.

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About the organisation

Vision and mission

The Bill Hogarth MBE Memorial Apprenticeship Trust (BHMAT) was set up in February 2000 in order to ensure that the coppicing skills of Bill Hogarth are recognised for their full worth and their continuity secured by setting up a broad-based apprenticeship scheme.

Geographical coverage

Within UK

Our track record

We have already piloted a coppice apprenticeship scheme and created a model for apprenticeship training. We have overseen the rolling out of the model of apprenticeship training both locally and nationally. We have increased the resource of trained coppice workers and endeavour to continue to do so.

Who do we help?

Budding apprentices and many more who aspire to be involved in coppice management. Coppice workers who need help to expand and grow their businesses.

How do we deliver this?

Through our three-year apprenticeship scheme.

Awards And Recognitions

Woodland Pioneers progression unit certificate. Bill Hogarth Diploma Both accredited by national awarding body Ascentis.