1 Year Course

What is the IBTC Boat Building Training Course?

The International Boatbuilding Training College (IBTC) Ltd is a training provider delivering tradition skills in wooden boatbuilding through the internationally recognised qualification IBTC Practical Boatbuilding Diploma,
in addition to the City & Guilds 2463-03 Marine Construction.

If you are thinking about joining us it’s really important that you’ve visited us – that way you can gain a much greater insight into the IBTC Practical Boatbuilding Diploma course. The Historic Dockyard in Portsmouth is free to enter
– we are in Boathouse 4 on your left


The next full time 1 year boatbuilding course will begin on 2nd September 2019

Please do give us a call us if you would like more information on 2019/20 dates.

At IBTC Portsmouth we don’t operate in the same way as a conventional college

We don’t have terms throughout the year and are not classroom based.


What does the course cover?


Following on from 1st 12 weeks you’ll start work in the boatyard.

We have a number of projects underway on various types of wooden boats from cold mould to restoration, repair and conservation. Work is being carried out on behalf of the owners by our current students.


Your first 12 weeks will take place in the Joinery Shop

In the joinery shop you will develop skills and techniques using hand tools. You’ll make your own tool chest, spar gauge, oar, bollow plane, mallet, steps, oilstone case.

You can attend the 12 week Joinery Course as a separate course at £5,950.


During your training students will develop the skills required, to build or restore traditional boats

Students will learn these skills by working on a wide range of boats, different constructions and sizes, new build and restoration. At the same time you’ll be developing your ability to problem solve in a whole range of boat restoration and build issues.

How will I learn?


Each item on the marking sheet is assessed and marked by our instructors and it is the cumulative grade that determines the grade of diploma that we award to each student.

Within these criteria we also grade the enthusiasm, health and safety awareness and employability of each student, because ultimately our measure of success is how many of each student intake not only achieve employment, but also retain it. Another measure of our success is the number of students who go on to establish their own boatbuilding business and become the employers of the future.


IBTC Portsmouth has a marking sheet that itemises all the main items involved in the new-build, repair and restoration of traditional wooden vessels.

Naturally there is a degree of overlap on some items but techniques can be quite different. For example, fitting a new clinker plank, and repairing a damaged one on an older boat require different techniques and problem solving approaches.


Students all complete the same woodworking exercises during their time in the joinery shop

After completing the woodworking exercises, students move into the boatyard to work on a number of boats that we have as teaching ‘vehicles’.

What will I learn?

We work on real boats with real owners and are definitely not a theoretical or classroom based establishment. You’ll learn a wide range of essential boating building skills and competencies.

How long is the course, and how much does it cost?

Our full fees for the full time IBTC Practical Boatbuilding Diploma 1 year course are £15,608 payable in  3 installments.

What next?

If you are interested in finding out more information or applying for the IBTC Portsmouth’s 1 year course, please call us on 02392 820921 (Option 1).

Or please use this form to express your interest and Fran Wright, our College Office Manager, will get back in touch with you.

If you are interested in our Boat Building courses, then get in touch today!