Supporting Young People: Sustaining Skills and Intangible Heritage
The Guild of St Stephen & St George and our 'trading arm', Gildencraft Stone Masonry C.I.C., exist to train another generation to become the elite level stonemasons of the future. Because of the unique way we train young people during their seven-year apprenticeship, we do not receive any external funding - no 'hit the target miss the point' quick 'fixes' for us. Genuine quality training takes time. Although our ethos is to be entrepreneurial and to grow and sustain ourselves through the work of our own hands, there are moments in our development when we need to appeal to the generosity of the public to help us on our way. We are currently poised to expand our area of operation and develop a new educational centre in the Cotswolds and we are asking for your support.
Equipping Our New Centre
As you can see from the video here, starting with no funding, we have worked hard to establish our main UK lodge in Norwich, where we are training future stonemasons. We will soon have use of an historic building in the Cotswolds as a centre where we can continue - and deepen - the training of our apprentices. In particular, we will be relocating our stone collection to this completely unfurnished venue, which will require x6 lockable sample cabinets, digital cameras, external hard-drives, scientific microscopes, computers etc.
In addition, part of our work here will be to engage with, and educate, the public about our ancient and rich heritage (see photo below showing our apprentices performing their traditional Mystery Play on the streets of Norwich - just one element of the intangible heritage we are keeping alive). Therefore, we will also require a projector, screen, a large marquee, together with foldable tables and chairs so that we are able to do open-air events in the local area.
Please become part of passing our tradition onto a new generation by giving generously and encouraging others to do so as well.