Training Opportunities

Please feel free to contact Julia Stephenson, Training Co-ordinator for further information on training or funding as detailed below.  Julia can be contacted on 01833 641010, or by e-mail on, or at our address 9-11 Chapel Row, Middleton in Teesdale, Barnard Castle. DL12 0SN


Please see possible funding sources under FUNDING 2022 below as most training can be at least part funded.  Links to qualifications appear at bottom of this page.

Lantra Chainsaw Maintenance & Cross Cutting will be held in Marwood on 7th & 8th July, with the previous course held on 16th & 17th May, followed by NPTC Felling Trees Up to 380mm over 3 days in the same week, by kind permission of Raby.
Emergency First Aid at Work training was held at UTASS in April with the next course being delivered by North Pennines Training on Friday, 30th September (£70+VAT). Prior booking required please.
We are planning to run another Mastering Medicines course in  September in UTASS and also some Mental Health training in October.
A two day Hedgelaying Introductory course was held in November ’21 with plans to run another course again in November 2022
NPTC/Lantra Excavator training was held on 3rd & 4th May and NPTC Rough Terrain Telescopic was held on 12th & 13th May.  We hope to repeat this latter course again shortly.


BRITISH WOOL SHEARING COURSE for 20 trainees was held at Hill House, Woodland on Saturday and Sunday 25th & 26th June, and on Wednesday & Thursday 29th & 30th June. Many thanks to John & Fay Hutchinson and family for dodging the showers on the second course to allow it to go ahead and to trainees for their perseverance and hard work.  Thanks too to Bill Mason and Brian Copeland for delivering such enjoyable training.
For how to shear sheep from British Wool, please see step by step guidance on this link
During week commencing Monday, 27th June the NPTC Safe Use of Pesticides PA1, PA2 (Mounted – with or without weedwipe) and PA6 (Handheld) training was held followed by an individual assessments w/c 4th July onwards.
Northumbria Dry Stone Walling Association Taster courses for 11th June and 23rd July are now sadly fully booked. If you would like to know more about the Northumbria Drystone Walling Association please see
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     Trainees and hosts at the Northumbria Drystone Walling Taster held at Woodland 
NPTC Safe Use of Sheep Dip training and assessments were held again arranged with Fiona Lovatt of Flock Health and Bimeda on 7th, 8th & 17th June – cost £160. Many thanks to Bimeda for sponsoring this training. 
Level 2 assessments for Transport of Animals by Road (Short Journeys) relating to journeys over 40 miles as part of an economic activity for Cattle & Sheep were arranged for 8th June – cost £75. 
Minibus Awareness Training was held here on 4th April using one of our accessible minibuses (please see separate Community Transport page for details).
LANTRA ABRASIVE WHEELS was held on 11th May at a nearby venue – please contact us if this is of interest.
NPTC and Lantra 360o Excavator training was held on 3rd + 4th of May and NPTC Rough Terrain Telescopic on 12th + 13th May.
Managing Medicines Flock Health Ltd was held in Teesdale and Weardale during February, with the course accredited by Fiona Lovatt with Red Tractor.  Around 70 trainees attended the courses. 

FUNDING – 2022


Funding is still available for people aged 16+ living in the Teesdale area. Please contact Denise Hopps on 01388 443078 or e-mail for more details.
The funding not only provides the opportunity for unemployed people to undertake training, gaining specific skills, moving them closer and/or into employment, it enables people employed in low paid jobs to acquire new/additional skills, enabling them to progress in their career and/or gain additional/new employment.   The Discretionary element complements the project by removing barriers, preventing the clients accessing training, for example, travel, resources etc.   
Prospective new employers, looking to engage suitably qualified employees, could also benefit as they can direct potential employees towards the project, if they are lacking relevant qualifications.
In today’s climate, due to Covid, the need for this funding is vital, to be able to respond to the demands of specific training needs, where there is no mainstream funding available. 


UTASS are delighted to announce that Weardale Area Action Partnership will again be offering part funding to Weardale residents and/or those employed in Weardale. Here is a link to the application form to return to UTASS detailing your interests which also lists the subsidised rate trainees would contribute towards the training AppForm-WAP- 15.6.21-JCS
ANOTHER FUNDING OPPORTUNITY FOR YOUNG PEOPLE ONLY – If you are a young person living in Middleton-in-Teesdale or surrounding parishes and would like funding to attend training, please get in touch with Julia at UTASS, as Middleton Educational Trust have indicated their intention to again help with funding for training.
For more information please contact Julia Stephenson at UTASS or Denise Hopps, Project Officer, Bishop Auckland College on 01388 443078 (Ext3502) or


Teesdale Branch of the National Farmers Union are offering £4,000 of funding towards the cost of agricultural and farm related training courses, including diversified farm activities, at 50% of the cost, up to a maximum of £250, excluding VAT.   
They are asking interested trainees who have been NFU members for a minimum of two years, or are direct family members or employees, to register at the NFU Barnard Castle Group Office on 01833 638286. 
Once eligibility is confirmed by the NFU trainees should approach training providers, such as UTASS to check training availability and explore what is available.  Once the agreed training has been completed, the NFU Office will require a receipted invoice from the trainer to reimburse the NFU member. 

A big thank you to everyone who applied for young people’s driver training funding. All applicants have now been notified regarding their applications for Lantra 13-15 Tractor Driving, Pre-Tractor Test Training, Quad Bike, Trailer training or Car driving.  We are so sorry to all those who were unsuccessful in getting funding for the training they applied for and hope they will reapply if we are funded again. Training for applicants will start from 16th July and we would like to thank everyone who contributes with a venue, loan of equipment or in any other way to make the training possible and especially to the funders, the Wellesley Trust Fund at the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland.

Please see 2019 images of this training below and feedback from previous trainees.

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Photos by kind permission of the Teesdale Mercury.

Feedback from applicants who have accessed this opportunity in 2021 include “Thank you for giving me the amazing opportunity … I really enjoyed my day and learnt loads of new agricultural hazards… which is why I want to say a massive thank you!  (The trainer) was a fantastic tutor making the day enjoyable and interesting.  I have already started to use the skills I learnt on my family farm and they have come in rather handy…  Please could you also pass on my thanks to the Wellesley Trust Fund for funding the training, I really appreciated it.” i
A trailer trainee has commented “… thank you for all the support and guidance both financially and practically.  Thanks again, so glad we have Utass to be there to help us all.”


NPTC Safe Use of Sheep Dips dipperside assessment in progress.
BRITISH WOOL SHEARING COURSE 2019 – 19 trainees attended last year’s course at Hill House, Woodland, by kind permission of  John & Fay Hutchinson.  The two courses spanned over 5 days, due to wet weather.
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Guidance Notes on Transporter Authorisations
UK animal transporter: application for type 1 authorisation
Lantra Chainsaw Maintenance and Cross Cutting
NPTC Safe Use of Veterinary Medicines
NPTC Level 2 Award In Safe Use of Sheep Dips
NPTC Rough Terrain Telescopic 
Lantra Abrasive Wheel Machines
NPTC Safe use of Pesticides
Rodenticides please call our Office to request advice on how to access on line training and Lantra assessment, if required.
NPTC Level 2 Award in the Transport of Animals by Road (Short Journeys)  – Cattle & Sheep are classed as one species. Although no training is required, those interested will receive information to prepare beforehand.  Qualification handbook 600/0306/6 states ”This qualification is aimed specifically at people transporting animals over 65Km and up to eight hours in duration, where the journey is in connection with an economic activity”.  COC Transport Animals by Road Schedule
The above qualification ties in with requirements for a business to apply for an Animal Transporter Authorisation for the above journeys, which is free of charge.  This Animal Health and Plant Agency application form needs to be completed and returned to the Welfare in Transport Team at Carlisle and can be obtained from UTASS, or by accessing the link above.
Thank you!
Grateful thanks for the team effort to make young people’s driver training possible and for helping young people achieve their vehicle driving ambitions.  In addition, the voluntary help from H & H Staff, community & UTASS Members is much appreciated, as well as from Middleton-in-Teesdale Mart for providing a venue for most of the Lantra Tractor Driving.