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Historic Scotland apprentice stonemasons carve their way to victory

16 June 2011

A team of two apprentice stonemasons from Historic Scotland’s Masonry Training Unit in Elgin has beaten teams from Telford College in Edinburgh and the City of Glasgow College to win the Scottish Inter College Apprentice Stonemasonry competition at the Masonry Training Facility at Elgin Cathedral.

George Marshall, 27, who lives in Glenrothes and works in Perth and Colin Taylor, 27 from Nairn, based at Fort George, Inverness were awarded the highest marks by three independent judges from the stonemasonry industry.

David Mitchell, Historic Scotland’s Director of Conservation Group said: “We are all absolutely delighted that the Historic Scotland team won the stonemasonry competition in the face of tough competition.  We have also won third place in the UK Stonemasonry Skills Challenge run by the Stone Federation and had the top three students in both heats, which is great news for us and for maintaining Scotland’s traditional building skills.”

The competition, sponsored by Historic Scotland and supported by Construction Skills, took place over three days.  The teams were tasked with hewing and building a stone bench using sandstone quarried in Scotland.

George and Colin were presented with a trophy and a masonry tool kit by Bob Stewart, a non-executive Director at Historic Scotland. The stone benches created by the apprentice stonemasons will be placed in a local park or outside space, to be decided by Moray Council.


Notes for editors

  • Historic Scotland is an executive agency of the Scottish Government charged with safeguarding the nation’s historic environment. The agency is fully accountable to Scottish Ministers and through them to the Scottish Parliament.   



For further information


Jennifer Johnston-Watt
Communications and Media Officer
Communications and Media
0131 668 8070 or 07827 956 866
jennifer.johnstonwatt@scotland.gsi.gov.uk