How to become a craft woodworker: George's story

Meet George, 22, and find out about life as a wheelwright (a craft woodworker) in Devon. Part of our Bitesize world of work series.

"Every day's a learning day here at the workshop. You're never doing the same thing."

  • George handcrafts wheels out of wood for things like carriages and canons
  • George enjoyed Design and Technology at school and wanted a job that involved working with his hands
  • He started his job as an apprenticeship at the company he now works for.

What to expect if you want to become a craft woodworker

In George's job, he uses traditional craft skills to make wheels from wood. Craft woodworking jobs can also include making and restoring items made from wood, such as furniture.

  • Craft woodworker salary: £14,000 to £30,000 per year
  • Craft woodworker working hours: 42 to 44 hours per week

What qualifications do you need if you want to be a craft woodworker?

  • Typical entry requirements: You can get into this job through an apprenticeship, college course, or by applying directly to a business. College courses to consider include Level 2 Diploma in Carpentry and Joinery or Level 3 Diploma in Wood Machining. You may need two or more GCSEs (or equivalent) at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D) for a Level 2 course and four or five GCSEs (or equivalent) at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) for a Level 3 course. You could also do an intermediate apprenticeship in furniture manufacturing, or carpentry and joinery. You can find out more about careers and training through Creative Choices.

This information is a guide (sources: LMI for All, National Careers Service)

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