Training Opportunities


WE REGRET TRAINING COURSES ONLY RUN WHEN THERE ARE SUFFICIENT NUMBERS  –  links to qualifications appear at the bottom of this page.

Please contact Julia Stephenson on 01833 641010 or email  for more information.

(Please remember we are closed on Wednesdays )

Whats on offer from UTASS…..

Managing Sheep Lameness & Responsible Use of Medicines with Supper provided.

Fiona Lovatt has kindly arranged another FREE Vet & Med session in UTASS, which is now booked for Tuesday, 12th November 6-9pm. Please phone to book a place and to advise of any dietary requirements for supper.

Also at UTASS shortly

  • Wednesday 20th November at 7pm – Michael McGarry – Wills, Power of Attorney and Succession, Supper and Social.
  • Wednesday 27th November at 7pm – Hefted to Hill – Following on from the much visited exhibition in July, Northern Heartlands are putting on a follow-up supper and Ewan Allinson will give a short update on the project then the ever entertaining Howard Petch will be the guest speaker.

For the above events a hot supper will be available on the evening – for room layout and catering purposes please contact UTASS on 01833 641010 or to book your place.


Sessions postponed to MONDAY 2ND DECEMBER health & safety training session relating to NPTC Safe Use of Sheep Dip qualification, followed by:-

Free & Open to All – Training session with Fiona Lovatt looking at the current sheep scab situation & what to do if you think you might have itchy sheep – this session is compulsory for anyone undertaking the NPTC assessments but could be useful to every one who has sheep.

NPTC CERTIFICATE OF COMPETENCE FOR THE TRANSPORT OF LIVESTOCK – CATTLE & SHEEP – the next assessments will be on Monday, 2nd December at a cost of £75 – time to be confirmed.  Prior registration with the NPTC via UTASS is necessary.


Booked for Thursday, 27th February 2020 at UTASS this qualification will be FREE, while funding is available, to those 19+.


Plan Ahead for Greater Peace of Mind

UTASS worked with St Cuthbert’s Hospice, Durham to deliver an Introductory Session to “Everything in Place” on Wednesday, 2nd October.  Unfortunately we weren’t able to get a group together on this occasion but if you’d like further information to encourage all age groups to plan ahead for greater peace of mind, please contact Louise Johnson, Community Liaison Officer at St Cuthbert’s Hospice on 0191 374 6196 or e-mail  Louise will be very happy to help.

DRYSTONE WALLING TASTER COURSE (£40) a second course was held at the same venue at Woodland on Saturday, 26th October, with the Northumbria Dry Stone Walling Association’s brilliant instructor and Members on hand to help.  Please let us know if you are interested in attending further courses next year.

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Managing Sheep Lameness & Responsible Use of Medicines with Supper provided.


Following the announcement of a third round of funding of £6840 from the Wellesley Trust Fund at The Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland, young people’s driver training is underway, with 3 Lantra 13-15 Tractor Driving courses held in August and 2 more next month and in November.  Quad Bike training was also held at the end of August.  UTASS is so grateful that this funding will continue for those who most need help.

Feedback from applicants who have accessed this opportunity previously demonstrates how brilliant it has been, providing for Car & Trailer lessons, Car Driving Lessons, Quad Bike, Pre-Test Tractor Training or Lantra 13-15 Tractor Driving.  The most recent comment we had was:

“Please accept my thanks for your support, there is no doubt that I would not have been able to get this far without you contribution which has been an invaluable lifeline to me.”

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Photos by kind permission of the Teesdale Mercury.

Although places have been allocated from this latest round of funding, if you’d like to apply, please complete and return the attached application form Vehicle Training Application or forms are available from the UTASS Office to complete

Funding for Weardale Rural Skills Training

Part funding for eligible Weardale trainees is again on offer.  For this second round of funding from Weardale Action Partnership, to open up opportunities to support the farming community, it is planned that Lantra Abrasive Wheel Machines, NPTC Safe Use of Sheep Dip, NPTC Certificate of Competence for the Transport of Livestock and Managing Medicines will be delivered as well (we have already run “Responsible Use of  Antibiotics”).  Those delivered previously and still on offer are British Wool Shearing, NPTC Rough Terrain Telescopic (2 x 2 day courses booked in May), Lantra Chainsaw, Car & Trailer Lessons, Emergency First Aid and Safe Use of Pesticides.

Please see below for a link to download an application form which also give details of the participant contribution required:



Course held on 18+19 June in Marwood.

BRITISH WOOL SHEARING COURSE 2019 – 19 trainees attended this 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.

Thanks too to Bill Mason and Brian Copeland for their encouragement and patience and it was excellent to see those who already know how to shear, wanting to learn more and coming along to improve their skills.  Eleven trainees benefited from funding from TAP’s Upskilling Fund (details below) and seven from WAP’s Weardale Rural Skills Training (see more info below).

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TAP Upskilling, Employability & Discretionary Project – For anyone looking for essential qualifications to enable them to gain employment, whether full or part time, please contact us, in the first instance, or Denise Hopps, Project Officer, who can offer guidance on how to apply to this Teesdale Area Action Partnership (TAP) Fund, managed by Bishop Auckland College.

The is aimed at those in low paid jobs, allowing them to acquire skills/qualifications enabling them to move up the career ladder, change direction or gain additional work in a new sector.  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.

For more information please contact Julia Stephenson at UTASS or Denise Hopps, Project Officer, Bishop Auckland College on 01388 443078 (Ext3502) or

What’s happened recently

CANINE FIRST AID was delivered by Registered Veterinary Nurse, Helen Ward from Cleveland Canine First Aid on  23rd August.  Those attending thoroughly enjoyed the course and if its of interest to you (cost £20 for the 2 hour course), please do get in touch and we’ll try to arrange the next date.

IAgSA BOOK KEEPING TRAINING held on 24th May with 11 trainees.  A second Minding Your Own Business Workshop is now available for trainees to:

Understand Year End Accounts

Recognise Cropping Year -v- Financial Year

Produce Gross & Net Margins and identify the Cost of Production

Produce Cash Flow and Budget Reports

INTRODUCTION TO MINDFULNESS was held on 3rd September.  Thanks to everyone who came along to this session and especially to June Wainwright for delivering such a insightful, relaxing session.  June’s Yoga class (£20 for 6 weeks) starts again on Tuesday, 10th September from 6-7pm.  Please contact June on 07443 930 321 if you’d like further details.

CMI Level 5 Diploma in Management & Leadership and NVQ Level 5 In Management – with the first session of these monthly sessions over a year long programme being held at UTASS on Wednesday 21st November.


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 a copy of the AHDB publication “Rodent Control on Farms” booklet with details of 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 – this time recently involving tractors & trailers kindly loaned by Karl, Loraine, Michael & Adam Robinson, Steven & Hannah Hunter and Alison & David Armstrong. Thanks too to all trainers involved with helping young people achieve their vehicle driving ambitions. Jamie & Rosie Finch, Trevor & Amanda Simpson and John & Fay Hutchinson have all recently hosted the Lantra training, as well as at Middleton in Teesdale Mart. In addition, the voluntary help from H & H Staff, community & UTASS Members is much appreciated.