21 May 2012
As the nation's biggest employer of stonemasonry apprentices,
Historic Scotland is one of 12,000 organisations and businesses
which together are helping to train 34,000 people around the
The two-day demonstration event at Edinburgh Castle at the start
Apprenticeship Week, which runs from May 21st to 25th, will
showcase the work of apprentices to Castle visitors through
demonstrations of stonemasonry and roofing.
Ms Hyslop also met the current intake of traditional building
skills apprentices working with Historic Scotland.
The agency has organised the event in partnership with
Construction Skills, Telford College, The National Federation of
Roofing Contractors, and the Stone Federation of Great Britain.
Ms Hyslop said: "Apprentices working in the traditional skills
sector are contributing to the future of Scotland's historic
environment, which adds more than £2.3 billion to the Scottish
economy annually and is a key factor in ensuring sustained economic
"Traditional buildings form a major part of Scotland's historic
environment, and it is important we retain and increase the quality
of these building skills to maintain our built heritage asset
There are over 400,000 traditionally constructed buildings in
Scotland, and the repair and maintenance sector in construction is
important to their survival.
Ms Hyslop added: "Historic Scotland is driving the traditional
skills agenda with vigour, in recognition of the importance of
sustaining these skills for existing buildings. Traditional forms
of materials and construction can also tell us much about building
the sustainable properties of the future. This event is a great
showcase for the work that Historic Scotland and the wider sector
does in caring for our traditional buildings."
Scottish Apprenticeship Week features business breakfasts,
networking events, skills demonstrations and management job swaps
across the country. Also involved are colleges, local authorities,
Jobcentre Plus and Skills Development Scotland.
Ms Hyslop said: "Scottish Apprenticeship Week helps celebrate
the valuable traditional building skills that are essential to the
nation's future well-being and prosperity."
Employers can find out how they can access support to help them
to employ apprentices by calling our helpline on 0800 783 6000 or
going to our Modern Apprentice section.
Historic Scotland's commitment to sustaining traditional
buildings will be reinforced later this year at a ministerial
summit to be held in Stirling.
Ms Hyslop will chair the event at Forth Valley College in
Stirling, on September 25th, when key figures in the sector will
discuss methods of increasing the demand for traditional building
skills as part of the Scottish Government's Traditional Building
Skills Strategy launched in 2011.
The Summit and the projects it will launch are aligned with
Government policies on youth employment, sustainable housing,
climate change and regeneration, and the wider goal of sustainable