Occupational profile - stone masonry

Information on apprenticeships in the construction crafts (stonemasonry) industry, including what’s involved, skills and knowledge needed and progression routes for apprentices

Stonemasonry

Stonemasonry involves carrying out advanced skilled work. The level 3 stonemason can do complex job tasks, requiring high levels of practical skills and knowledge, as well as managing their own work and leading small teams.

The main differences with a level 2 stonemason are that the level 3 stonemason has responsibility for managing their own and other people’s work, as well as being required to complete complex and non-standard work.

This apprenticeship involves completing mandatory and optional units.

Stonemasonry encompasses a wide variety of skills through different occupations. These skills can be used on new, restoration, maintenance and repair work, carried out in workshops, on-site or both.

It can involve work on cottages, country houses, churches, cathedrals and bridges to mention just a few.

Depending on the chosen route, occupations will need specific skills:

  • banker mason will develop skills with tools to work stone into shaped components
  • fixers will develop an understanding of how to fix stone into place using a variety of fixings methods and materials
  • façade maintenance involves developing a knowledge of the correct application of various cleaning materials on a variety of stone, how they react and what protection to use for adjoining areas

You will have an understanding of types of stone and how they react to various conditions will be part of the training for all aspects of stonemasonry.

Occupations are:

  • banker mason
  • stone fixer
  • stone cladding and façade preservation

You will be working with hand tools and specialist equipment.

You will need:

  • excellent communication skills for working with clients and others
  • problem-solving skills
  • the ability to work alone without direct supervision

Stonemasons need to:

  • work safely and be aware of key health, safety and welfare issues
  • plan and carry out their work to the required standard
  • move, handle and store resources, whilst complying with relevant legislation and guidance
  • interpret and follow verbal and written work instructions from trade supervisors and site managers
  • select the required materials and resources to carry out the work
  • install related materials and components as appropriate to the specification
  • use maintain and store hand tools, power tools and associated equipment
  • access, interpret and use drawings and specifications to carry out their work

Skills and knowledge needed

On completion of this apprenticeship, level 3 stonemasons will have the same occupational skills as a level 2 stonemason but will also be able to understand the technical principles of advanced stonemasonry and to use a range of advanced trade skills which allow them to carry out complex work to highly skilled standards and tolerances.

National occupational standards (NOS)

Every framework must be underpinned by national occupational standards (NOS) which sets out the standards of performance individuals must achieve when carrying out functions in the workplace, together with specifications of the underpinning knowledge and understanding. Behaviours may be detailed within or alongside the NOS.

Core NOS

Unique registration number (URN) Title of the occupational standard

VR209

Confirm work activities and resources for the work

VR210

Develop and maintain good working relationships

VR211

Confirm the occupational method of work

VR641

Conform to general workplace health, safety and welfare

Available NOS

Unique registration number Title of the occupational standard

VR199

Produce complex templates and moulds

VR200

Produce complex stonemasonry components

VR201

Set out complex stonemasonry structures

VR202

Erect complex stonemasonry structures

VR208

Repair complex stonemasonry structures

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