Help celebrate individuals, companies, organisations and groups who demonstrate good practice in developing craft skills including learners and tutors

The Craft Skills Awards acknowledge excellence in teaching, maintaining and developing the craft skills of the craftsperson as well as those of others. Passing on and developing craft skills are vital for creating and maintaining crafts for the future and to ensure that crafts survive and flourish as a vibrant part of our economy.

The enthusiasm, knowledge and experience of craftspeople, groups and organisations have a real influence on the number and quality of skilled craftspeople in the UK. Identifying and celebrating the very best of good craft practice by the Craft Skills Awards should encourage others to support the next generation of makers.

The Crafts Skills Awards are about just that; they are not about craft objects or artefacts.

These awards will:

Award winners could be an individual craftsperson or master, a company or institution, teacher, tutor or workshop leader.

The specific activity celebrated could include anything from academic courses and professional apprenticeship programmes to one-to-one advice, taster sessions for beginners and masterclasses for experienced professionals.

Awards will be made in five categories but all of them will be assessed against the following criteria:

Awards will be made in the following categories:

Award for encouraging craft skills in the workplace
To reward best practice in the workplace - for example, benchside training or implementing and championing an apprenticeship programme.
Award for encouraging craft skills in an educational setting
To reward best practice in an educational institution - for example programmes in Further Education, Higher Education or other accredited training providers.
Award for encouraging craft skills in other settings
To reward best practice in an ‘informal’ setting - for example, programmes run by associations, guilds, practitioner groups, individual practitioners, galleries or exhibition spaces.
Award for engaging new and diverse audiences in craft skills
To award best practice in engaging new and diverse audiences with the first steps in the development of their individual craft skills. For example workshop programmes, community outreach, schools programmes.
Craft Learner of the Year
To award an individual who has made an exceptional commitment to furthering their own craft skills.

Entry is by open application with endorsement or by nomination.

The endorsement or nomination could be by an individual of appropriate knowledge and standing or a senior representative of a relevant and appropriate organisation (this might include a guild or association, professional body, educational establishment, local authority or funder).

The online application form can be found at

Winners will be presented with their awards at a high-profile ceremony in May 2013. They will also receive a certificate and a financial award of £2,500 to be spent on training, craft equipment to support them to attain a new skills or practice, business support, travel or a visit to extend their knowledge and understanding of craft. Winners will also be asked for a short report to outline how the money was spent so that the benefits of winning can be seen.

The deadline for applications is midday Friday 15th February 2013. The shortlist will be announced in March.

Date Added: January 16th 2013