Historic Vessel Conservation Qualification


Course Overview

National Historic Ships UK will shortly be offering its own qualification in Historic Vessel Conservation. This course is unique in addressing the specialist knowledge needed to understand a historic vessel project. It seeks to create a national standard which will ensure that the conservation work being carried out on these craft follows recognised guidelines.

During the course, you will gain a real understanding of different approaches, terminology, standards and outcomes and put these into practise.

Structured, supportive, flexible learning

This course is designed to be studied at a distance, giving you the flexibility to learn from any location within a structured and supportive framework. 

The majority of your learning will be done online through the use of an online virtual learning environment called Blackboard which can be accessed by registered users. This will give you access to:

  • Course materials such as reading lists, learning films and case studies
  • Discussion boards for students and mentors to communicate and an opportunity for sharing knowledge, skills and experience
  • Webinars and guest publications
  • Group areas to support tasks such as online discussion and file exchange
  • Regular course announcements
  • Submission and automatic receipting of electronic coursework
  • A record of your progress 

On joining, you will also receive a copy of the NHS-UK guidance manual Conserving Historic Vessels, which should be consulted in conjunction with the course materials online, and a “how to“ guide to get you started on Blackboard. 

Through a Register of Specialist Expertise, you will be able to contact individuals by email or telephone to advise or guide you on key aspects of your studies.  You will be monitored by our in-house tutor and will also receive written study skills guidance on how to produce your coursework, plus test assignments to give you practise.

What will I learn?

The course comprises seven units which cover key decision making stages that should be considered when planning to conserve a historic vessel. 

Course Units

Unit 1— Historic Vessel Evaluation

Is she worth conserving? This unit aims to teach students the processes required to   implement an effective vessel assessment including how to assess a vessel for her historical significance and her current fabric condition.

Unit 2—Stabilising a Historic Vessel as Risk of Decay

Buying time! This unit aims to teach students the process required to stabilise a historic vessel and how to protect her condition.

Unit 3— Finding Data Relating to Specific Historic Vessels

What have you got? This unit aims to teach students how to identify the sources of information used to understand a historic vessel as well as identify the material used to construct her.

Unit 4—Determining the Appropriate Route for Historic Vessel Conservation

Decision time! This unit aims to help students understand the parameters associated with different conservation options including preservation, restoration, reconstruction and adaptation.

Unit 5—Applying Conservation Plans to Historic Vessels

Doing the work! This unit will help students develop a conservation plan to map the long term future of a historic vessel and understand the impact such a documentation will have. 

Unit 6—Producing Replica Vessels

Starting from scratch! This unit will teach students the concept of “replication” as a method of understanding historic vessels and how the construction of a replica should be planned and implemented.

Unit 7—Recording and Deconstructing Historic Vessels

Making a valuable record. This unit aims to teach students how to record historic vessels at risk of loss and how to assess when deconstruction is a suitable course of action.
























Want to find out more?

An online brochure will be available soon!  Please watch this space for further details to be released.

How do I apply?

We will be taking online applications later this Autumn and the first course is being scheduled for early 2018.  Your application will then be assessed by the Historic Vessel Conservation Course Admissions Panel and we will notify you as soon as possible if you have been accepted on to the programme.