Plumbing (Uk)

I live in London (in the UK).

How can I get plumbing skills, and also, possibly, how do I become a


(I've been hearing more and more lately that skilled tradesmen make

more money than IT professionals)

One thought on “Plumbing (Uk)

  1. Hello mstevens

    There are colleges in various parts of London offering courses in

    plumbing. On the whole, it is the colleges providing a full training

    which also have introductory or foundation courses. Some offer

    part-time and/or evening courses, but not all.

    If you decide to go the whole way with this and become a fully trained

    plumber you will need to study for NVQs which are "National Vocational

    Qualifications – (NVQs) – relat[ing] to specific jobs……NVQs are

    made up of a series of units. A student passes a unit when they can

    show that they are competent at a particular skill." Colleges which

    offer NVQ courses will normally arrange work experience as part of the

    training. They should also give you career and financial advice.

    Some of the colleges expect you to phone or order a brochure to get

    full details of their courses. Others provide good information on

    their websites.

    You will probably want to contact one or more of these colleges listed

    for the London area by BPEC, the British Plumbers Employers Council.

    BPEC oversees plumbing training in England, along with the Learning

    Skills Council. (If you want more details on their role see the links

    at the end.)



    Hackney College (Brooks)

    Brook House Campus

    Kenninghall Rd



    E5 8BP

    020 7613 9000

    Hackney's site has a useful guide to the different levels of NVQ and

    how they compare with other qualifications.

    You can request a comprehensive printed guide to courses.


    Newham College of Further Education

    East Ham Campus

    High Street South

    East Ham


    E6 4ER

    020 8257 400

    1 and 2 year courses


    College of North East London

    Tottenham Centre

    High Rd



    N15 4RU

    0208 802 3111

    All levels including introductory "working towards plumbing"

    This is considered a "centre of excellence" in plumbing training.


    Camden Training Centre

    57 Pratt St



    NW1 0DP

    020 7482 2103

    You have to have been unemployed for a while for their courses, both

    part and full-time.


    College Of North West London

    Dudden Hill Lane



    NW10 2XD

    020 8208 5050

    Plumbing foundation courses including evening classes


    Lewisham College

    Plumbing & Gas Section

    2 Deptford Church St



    SE8 4RZ

    020 8692 0353

    A choice of courses including a two-year course for people in

    employment who can attend college in the evening.

    More information than most places:

    "Is this course for me?

    If you have little or no previous experience and want to enter the

    plumbing profession this could be the course for you.

    What will I study?

    There are eight compulsory subjects:

    * Commission and decommission systems

    * Contribute to quality development and improvement of products

    and services

    * Fabricate, position and check sheet lead weathering system


    * Install and test the components of the system

    * Maintain effective working relationships

    * Maintain sheet lead weathering systems

    * Maintain the effective operation of systems

    * Maintain the safe working environment

    There are five optional subjects:

    * Install and test the components of oil supply systems

    * Commission and decommission oil supply systems

    * Install and test the components of unvented hot water systems

    * Commission and decommission unvented hot water systems

    * Maintain the effective operation of unvented hot water systems"


    East Berkshire College

    Station Road




    SL3 8BY

    0800 923 0423

    (Web address given not functioning but since the college is in Slough,

    I thought you might not care. Please ask if you want me to chase this

    up for you.)


    Lambeth College

    Vauxhall Centre

    Belmore St

    Wandsworth Rd


    SW18 2JY

    020 7501 5010

    foundation and NVQ


    Richmond Upon Thames College

    Egerton Road



    TW2 7SJ

    020 8607 8000


    Ealing Tertiary College

    Southall Centre

    Beaconsfield Rd



    UB1 1DP

    08457 023883



    Hammersmith & West London College

    School of Building

    40 Lime Grove

    Shepherds Bush


    W12 8EA

    0800 980 2175


    British Plumbers Employers Council



    Here are a few more possibilities which come from the "Association of

    Colleges – London, a web guide to further and adult education colleges

    and courses in London" at:




    day and evening – includes NVQ


    City of Westminster


    Richmond Community College

    evening classes





    Distance learning usually means a correspondence course but these look

    like teach-yourself booklets at first glance:

    Modules on Plumbing

    News of a new distance learning course assessed by Mid-Kent College:

    Equator distance learning courses

    I also found a link on the IOP site for 'distance learning' but it

    doesn't lead anywhere useful.



    The Institute of Plumbers (IOP) have links to 'training providers'.

    Institute of Plumbers

    A news story confirming your feeling that plumbers are in demand!

    "29,000 plumbers short

    Ageing workforce

    Only 833 NVQ Level 3 certificates issued in 2000"

    Report of speech at IOP

    The British Plumbing Employers Council (Training) Ltd.

    "BPEC is the National Training Organisation (NTO) for the plumbing

    industry. Its primary aim is to use training and development, to

    create an environment in which all companies within the plumbing and

    mechanical engineering services industry can aspire to become world


    You can write to BPEC (Training) Ltd at the address shown on the home

    page. BPEC will put you in touch with training organisations offering

    Modern Apprenticeship opportunities for young people. Alternatively,

    complete and send the form supplied in the publications section of

    this site."


    GWINTO – Developing Skills for the Gas and Water Industries – you

    might want to check their jargon buster for help decoding all the

    initials connected with vocational education, retraining etc.. (e.g.

    JSA – Job Seekers Allowance)

    Gas and Water Industries

    The LSC – Learning and Skills Council – website offers downloads on

    modern apprenticeships' but they are really aimed at public sector

    employers considering training their workers.

    LSC – Central London


    I hope this will be helpful and that you will be able to learn

    plumbing and perhaps pursue it as a career. Please feel free to get

    back to me by using the 'request clarification' feature if you need

    any explanation of anything I've written, or if you have trouble with

    any of the links.

    Good luck!

    Regards – Leli

    search terms

    plumbing NVQ training "distance learning" course college

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