Reply To: The carbon foot print of industrial heritage

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Further to your question about skills (nothing to do with fuels).

We are proposing that technological skills should be recognised as legitimate intangible heritage alongside songs, dances and pizzas.

There are two categories:
1. Those requiring formal regulation and certification (usually those involving hazardous work practices).
All certificated training must be to an accredited course by an accredited trainer from an accredited training organisation. Only large organisations can afford to follow this path.
Other organisations are relying on “old-timers” with legacy qualifications.
2. “Other” skills – the thousands of skills required to keep heritage machinery operating.
These tend to be learnt from others within heritage organisations.

Mainstream technical training organisations no longer teach heritage skills – for example panel beating is no longer taught, only how to bolt on a new panel. Some sectors, like motor vehicles, are fairly well serviced because there is a critical mass and people can afford to pay for service.
Other smaller sectors struggle because they don’t have the volume and are sparsely spread across the country. These operating organisations are the last habitats for these intangible skills and do their best to pass them on but they are not ideal training organisations.
Realistically, the heritage organisations are the only places with the knowledge and equipment to be able to provide practical training on heritage items but they don’t have the expertise to train effectively or efficiently. There are some examples of the two components coming together but they are large capable organisations with centralised facilities.

The Association of Tourist and Heritage Railways Australia has, after years of trying, succeeded in having their in-house train driving (including steam) and assistant (fireman) courses approved by the national regulator.
The Historic Aircraft Restoration Society has the largest and most complex collection of flying heritage aircraft in Australia and has teamed up with an accredited training organisation (owned by an aviation heritage enthusiast) and have become an accredited training site. They have also developed and deliver accredited training programs – they have followed the official path.