Home UK Dorset › You are here

Boat Building and Woodworking Vocational Programs and Short Courses in Lyme Regis, UK

boat building academy lyme regis

Founded in 1997, the Boat Building Academy provided full-time, highly practical skills training with the emphasis on hands-on learning. The Academy is an MoD approved provider of resettlement training, an approved Royal Yachting Association (RYA) training centre, on the provider’s list for Professional and Career Development Loans and a member of the British Marine Federation.

All courses are full-time and students work five days a week and classes are under the direct supervision of at least one Instructor at all times during the working week. At least 90% of student’s time is spent in the workshop with classroom time is kept to a minimum.


In addition to gaining expertise in the practice and underpinning theory of boat building and allied fields (e.g. woodworking skills) some students also have the opportunity to build their own boats. 

The reputation of the Academy in the marine industry is such that the academy is regularly approached by companies who want to recruit people who can hit the ground running, have confidence in a wide range of practical skills and understand the theories of boat construction and finishing.

boat building academy campus

Training Programs




Boat Building Programs

  • City & Guilds 2463 Level 3 Certificate in Boat Building, Maintenance and Support (38 weeks):The 40 week Boat Building, Maintenance and Support course, incorporating City & Guilds 2463 Level 3 Diploma in Marine Construction, Systems Engineering and Maintenance (the technical certificate of an apprenticeship) is the flagship course. It gives students the skills to find jobs in the marine industry or establish themselves as boat builders in their own right, although some students join the course for a sabbatical or on retirement and have no plans to work in the marine industry.

Fuirniture Making Programs

  • Furniture Making (12 weeks): Intensive and practical: the course includes skill building, a Level 3 qualification and a personal project piece designed and made by the student. It includes 400 hours of scheduled bench time supervised by tutor, Mark Ripley, a trained furniture designer/maker with over 30 years of professional experience. The workshops include a bench shop with a cabinet making bench for each student, tool kit sufficient for completing the course and a separate dedicated machine shop which includes a range of small industrial quality floor standing machines and bench top machinery.
  • Advanced Furniture Making (12 weeks): This course is for intermediate students wishing to develop existing skills to a professional standard. We ask that applicants can demonstrate that they have experience equivalent to level 3. The course takes the student through hand and machine skill development, cabinet making, fine drawer making and fitting, chair making, batch production and a personal project.

Short Courses

  • Bench Making
  • Introduction to Woodworking
  • Woodworking Skills 1pegged mortice and tenon
  • Woodworking Skills 2
  • Woodworking Skills 3
  • Woodworking Skills 4
  • Antique Furniture Restoration
  • Marquetry
  • Boat Building Courses
  • Introduction to Boat Building
  • Build a Boat – Initial Set-upBuild a Boat - Initial Set-up
  • Traditional Wooden Boat Building
  • Modern Wooden Boat Building
  • Wooden Boat Restoration
  • GRP Repairs
  • Renovation and Finishing
  • Ropeworkropework
  • Sail Making