Training Opportunities



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

(Please remember we are closed on Wednesdays)


16-17 May*   NPTC Rough Terrain Telescopic Loader Training (£345 approx.)

22May*           NPTC Safe of Use of Pesticides (PA1) – this element needs to be done first

23 / 27 May*  NPTC Safe of Use of Pesticides PA2 (Mounted) – £350 including PA1 / 

                         NPTC Safe of Use of Pesticides PA6 (Handheld) – £325 including PA1

23-26 May*   Semex Approved DIY Artificial Insemination in Cattle – £445 + VAT

19-21 June*  Dry Stone Walling Training in Weardale with Lantra Trainer

28+29 June*  BWMB 2 day course – £150 + VAT*  please see link for further details:

 * Funding for eligible trainees may be available from Weardale Action Partnership

BWMB 2 Day Shearing Course – Wed 28 + Thurs 29 June – Hill House, Woodland

Funding will be available to eligible trainees from Weardale Action Partnership reducing the cost for two days by 50% to £90 including VAT.  Lets hope for another excellent year – we had really good feedback last year, with Blue, Bronze & Silver Seals being achieved!

Funding for Weardale Rural Skills Training  (Application forms on UTASS website or from the Office)

Emergency First Aid Training, fully funded to Weardale funded trainees, was held at Teesdale Community Resources in Barnard Castle on Wednesday, 23rd November, delivered by Inspirational Training.  Two trainees attended and the feedback was excellent.  A further training course can be arranged if there are more trainees requiring this qualification.

So far 9 trainees have been part funded by Weardale Action Partnership towards their NPTC Safe Use of Pesticides training & assessment; 2 for the Semex DIY Artificial Insemination for Cattle training, held on 13-16th June; 2 for British Wool Marketing Board Sheep Shearing on 22 & 23 June; 3 for Lantra Chainsaw training held at Hamsterley Forest on 29 & 30 June + 4 more on 28 & 29 November and 2 have done the trailer training, with another due to start shortly. Training for 3 trainees to do the NPTC City & Guilds Level 2 Award in Land-based Forklift Truck Operations (Rough Terrain, Masted and Telescopic Types) was held on 15 & 16 September last year and again on 16th & 17th May. PLEASE CONTACT JULIA FOR FURTHER INFORMATION ON THE VARIOUS COURSES, AS WE NEED SUFFICIENT NUMBERS FOR TRAINING TO RUN.

Part funding from Weardale Action Partnership, over two years, has been made available to farmers living or working in Weardale towards the cost of a wide range of rural skills, with a First Aid course being free of charge. Mostly accredited, training on offer includes Artificial Insemination for Cattle, Emergency First Aid at Work (outdoor related); British Wool Marketing Board shearing training, Car + Trailer driving lessons; NPTC Safe Use of Pesticides;  Forklift Truck Operations (Rough Terrain, Masted and Telescopic Types), Lantra Awards Technical Award in Chainsaw Maintenance & Cross-Cutting, as well as Drystone Walling.  Training courses are arranged when there are sufficient numbers coming forward to run a course, so please get in touch to let us know of your training requirements.


Vehicle Training to Improve Employability (Application form downloadable from link below or from UTASS)

We were delighted to hear that we have been awarded funding from the Wellesley Trust Fund at the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland and we will be applying to this organisation again in early June 2017.  This funding will provide for car & trailer lessons, car driving lessons, quad bike or pre-test tractor training and Lantra 13-16 tractor driving.  Applicants are asked why they feel this training would be useful to them and to indicate how it would improve their career prospects or enable them to access training and employment opportunities outside their immediate area. All applicants for the new round of funding who returned their applications to UTASS by Wednesday, 31st August, 2016 have been contacted and training has started, with Lantra tractor driving in November & December, car driving lessons and trailer lessons being underway.  A form for future applications can be downloaded by clicking on this link, although there is only a space left for Quad Bike Training: VEHICLE TRAINING APPLICATION FORM   

Training utilising funds from this funder is now well underway.  Lantra 13-16 Tractor driving was held in November and December last year and on 20th & 21st February 2017.  Grateful thanks go for the team effort to make this training possible – this time involving tractors & trailers kindly loaned by Watsons of Strand Foot; Karl, Loraine & Michael Robinson and Peter & Barbara Needham & Stuart Richardson  The venue has been provided by kind permission of Middleton in Teesdale Farmers’ Mart with voluntary help from H & H Staff, community & UTASS Members much appreciated.  Thanks too to Terry Maw, the Lantra trainer who has been delivering this excellent training for over 9 years and makes it such a enjoyable learning experience for the two trainees.

Two trainees have received funding towards the cost of their car driving lessons and four have had funding towards the cost of their car & trailer lessons, in preparation for their test.  Pre-Test Tractor driving has also been delivered earlier this May, alongside the tractor to be used.

Our thanks go to The Sir Tom Cowie Charitable Trust after 3 years of funding for vehicle driving lessons for young drivers.


Please call the UTASS Office to request a copy of the AHDB publication “Rodent Control on Farms” on 01833 641010.

The Rodenticide Stewardship Regime explained


Spray Training – more planned in May – see above

Another 16 trainees attended the final round of training over four days for the NPTC Safe Use of Pesticides (PA or Grandfather route) at UTASS and Middleton Mart.  Training and assessments covered Handheld or Mounted/Mounted +Weedwiper, with practical  assessments finishing on 19th August.   Five assessments for the Certificate of Competence for the Transport of Livestock – Cattle and Sheep, have also been completed.  Additional information regarding the safe use of pesticides and Safe Use of Sheep Dip qualification can be found at the bottom of this page.  Our thanks go to Middleton Mart, Edwin Parkin, Jane Philbrick, Craig Gibson, Carl Stephenson and Martin Sayer for the loan of equipment to make this training possible and to Middleton Mart for the use of their facilities as a venue.

Educational  Links

Funding has kindly been provided by the Heart of Teesdale for the final educational visit , including transport for the morning’s visit to Middleton Mart by 31 pupils from Woodland School on Tuesday, 20th September, following the visit in May by the Reception Class from Middleton School.  We are most grateful to Matthew Iceton who shared his enthusiasm for his poultry, bringing along around 20 of his rare breed poultry and eggs of various sizes.  He gave a good insight into looking after their welfare, preparing them for shows and also joined in the Farming Year presentation delivered by Jennie and Julia in the Mart Cafe.

UTASS Open Evening – 8.9.16

This event, attended by about 90 people of all ages, was held at Middleton Mart and included a variety of safety awareness and other sessions for those who attend the Drop In and for community members.  The achievements of volunteer drivers who have passed the D1 test to drive a minibus, funded by Teesdale Action Partnership, were celebrated by Vince Sewell of Staindrop Scouts and Chris Elstob of Teesdale YMCA being in attendance – Chris even brought some of the YMCA members along utilising the TCR minibus.  Project Manager, Diane Spark, commented “We were delighted with the turnout at the event. People of all ages attended and seemed to enjoy the wide range of things to do and see. We are enormously grateful to everyone who helped make the event such a huge success.”

Excellent lamb burgers to celebrate Love Lamb Week were provided, using local lamb from McFarlane’s butchers in Middleton and the Co-op in Middleton kindly donated breadbuns.  Gordon Jones also provided a delicious beef casserole alternative.   A big thank you for coming along to deliver sessions is extended to S & A Fabrications, Middleton-in-Teesdale Fire Station, Durham Police Community Support, Deepdale Offroad, BWMB, Inspirational Training, Bobby Shann, Sue Bainbridge, Richard Matthews, Matthew Iceton, Emma Spry, Sarah Coxon and Liz Johns.  Thanks also too, to the Heart of Teesdale for providing funding.

Thanks to everyone who has helped in any way with training arrangements, including Linda & Peter O’Shea, Middleton Mart, Barnard Castle Mart & UTASS (for venues) and also JW Bainbridge, Andersons ATV, James Fletcher, James Nattrass, Carl Stephenson & Middleton Forge (loan of equipment for free) as well as help from Paul Rowland, Kay Hutchinson & Stephen Beddard. All this support is greatly appreciated. 

For additional information regarding Use of Pesticides (Grandfather) PAGR 601/1338/1 see link below:

For additional information regarding NPTC Level 2 Award in the Safe Use of Pesticides, see link below:

For additional information regarding Level 2 Award in the Safe Use of Sheep Dips Assessment Schedule & HSE advice: (Advice to farmers and others dipping sheep)

NPTC Level 2 Award in the Transport of Animals by Road (Short Journeys)  – Cattle & Sheep are classed as one species.

If individuals want this qualification, then we plan to arrange these City & Guilds NPTC assessments during October.  Although no training is required, those interested will receive information to prepare beforehand (please see the link at the end of this section).  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 – please see the link to the Guidance Notes & Application form below (or contact us if you require a print out of any information mentioned in this section).