Learn about the properties, use and conservation of one of Scotland's most widely used building materials. This course will cover the biology, variety, decay mechanisms and sourcing of timber in traditional buildings.
Download a prospectus for more information on the diploma and short courses.
Timber is one of Scotland's most significant traditional building materials. It has a rich history from cruck frame houses to decorative internal timbers, and is used across a range of building features including structural material.
What you'll learn
On this course, you'll gain an introduction to the essential biology of timber used in Scotland over the centuries. With our expert tutors, you'll learn how to trace the sources of timber, from early samples of Scots origin to imports from the Baltic states and North America.
The course will examine timber's physical properties, its natural weathering and decay processes, and its resilience to man-made damage or interference. We'll also explore the complex issues surrounding decay caused by wet and dry rots, and examine current best practice methods for the eradication and prevention of these devastating fungal problems.
By the end of this course, you'll understand how to:
undertake repairs including:
initial survey and documentation
assessment of fabric condition
diagnosis of the causes of defects
deterioration or mechanical failure
on-site repair of existing or installation of new material
identify different types of timber
match and source appropriate and sustainable replacement materials
Everything you learn on this course will be in the context of current principles of conservation best practice.
Short courses are not formally assessed. Students will be awarded a certificate upon successfully completing this course. Anyone looking for a formal qualification can study our full diploma courseor separate units.
The Engine Shed has been supported by a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund. Thanks to National Lottery players, we have been able to create Scotland’s dedicated building conservation centre. It enables us to encourage understanding of traditional building materials and skills among the public and professionals and raise standards in conservation for traditional buildings.