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International Boatbuilding Training College

Sea Lake Road, Oulton Broad, Lowestoft, Suffolk, NR32 3LQ
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About us

IBTC offers a variety of boatbuilding/maintenance and woodworking courses suitable for both those looking for a career in the industry as well as individuals wanting to develop existing interests and skills or develop new ones.

We believe that learning should begin by working with a variety of tools on real projects from day one. We focus on individual needs, building confidence and skills, working towards your desired goal. With students of all ages (ranging from teens to those well into retirement) and from all backgrounds, this eclectic mix helps to create a vibrant atmosphere, where individuals can share their skills, experiences and dreams. One of our current young students is following in the footsteps of his grandfather who took the college’s first ever course 40 years ago back in 1975, whilst another older recruit is a retired dentist wishing to learn the skills necessary to build his own Folkboat.

Whatever their backgrounds, one thing is certain, our students work together to make the IBTC a friendly and creative centre of excellence. In the words of a former trainee, learning new skills at the IBTC, “Was the best year of my life!”

What we can offer you

12 Month Courses:

Our 12 month courses have been refined over the years to provide, we feel, the best possible introduction to working with wood. We will teach you to produce beautiful work, using traditional and modern methods as appropriate and these fully comprehensive courses will give you the confidence to tackle all projects, large and small. We offer:

  • 47 week boatbuilding
  • 47 week joinery and furniture

To find out more information about our 12 month courses please visit our course page where you can also view our full time course fact sheets.

Part Year Courses:

  • Build your own boat - At the end of this course you will have completed and launched a boat of up to 5m in length. Restorations as well as new builds can be considered subject to suitability.
  • Woodworking & joinery skills - An intensive course focusing on a range of woodworking skills suitable for all including those with no previous experience. Forming the foundation element for both our 47 week boatbuilding and furniture courses it forms the backbone of our college from which our boat builders develop.
  • Small boatbuilding - This 12 weeks small boatbuilding course starts with four weeks practical woodworking to learn the necessary skills required.
  • You then progress through all the stages necessary to build your own boat from constructing the backbone, setting up station moulds, planking, fitting out and finishing. You will also learn the techniques and skills needed to set up and build larger boats of both clinker and carvel construction.

To find out more about our part year courses please visit our course page.

Short Courses:

There are also a number of short courses available at the IBTC. such as:

  • Traditional Rigging and Wirework
  • Ropework, Knots and Splicing
  • Basic Boat Plumbing and Electrics
  • Introduction to Woodworking and much more

Our courses range from 1 - 5 days and cover a number of topics. If you would like to know more about what courses we have to offer then please see our short courses page.

Find out more

If you would like to know more about training at the IBTC and what we can offer you the please visit our website. Alternatively you can email us.

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IBTC Herreshoff 11'6" Dinghy Backbone Build
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