City & Guilds is one of the oldest vocational educational organisations in the UK and is the only body to offer qualifications in Craft Bookbinding. Qualifications are regulated on OFQUAL - the Office of Qualifications and Examination Regulations. Assessments are carried out by the C&G's accredited Assessment Centre, Shepherds Bookbinders Ltd. The curriculum was revised in 2012 to meet modern bindery requirements.
Students who gain an internationally recognised City & Guilds Award or Certificate have the satisfaction of achieving an independently assessed level of competence.
Each level includes 2 bookbinding units and a design unit that is common across all craft disciplines. Each Unit requires a minimum 30 hours tuition plus independent research, practice and preparation of the required materials for submission for assessment. The basic process is:-
You can learn the bookbinding skills you need from any reputable bookbinding tutor or institution. The cost varies depending on where you go and how many classes you take. In addition to any course fees you will also have to pay registration, admin & assessment fees.
City and Guilds Registration Fees (as of Sept 2019) are:
Level 1 -£40.10
Level 2 - £79.00
Level 3 - £183.00
(Note: these fees are subject to change by City and Guilds at any time - last updated Dec 2022)
Admin & Assessment Fee £95. In addition there is a charge of £250 for L3 assessments. Currently the only Assessment centre in the UK is the Centre for Book Arts, The Daffodil Barn, Nursery Farm, Woodborough, Near Pewsey, Wiltshire, SN9 5PF. Contact Ali Strachan firstname.lastname@example.org
Students have 2 years from the date of registration to complete their work for submission.
Experienced binders who are already proficient in the skils and techniques described in each unit and therefore do not feel they need the tuition but would still like to gain C&G qualification and want to know how to go about this please click here for a link to the free Assessment Guide which explains, in detail, the requirements for assessment and some suggestions for how they might be approached.
This Unit is available as a free self paced on-line course. Learn how to apply the design elements of colour theory, mark making, shape & form, texture & pattern and the design principles of contrast, proportion, balance and composition to their craft. Students will begin a design portfolio which will be enhanced and developed throughout the other courses. Students can complete the design unit at any time whilst working towards Level 1 & 2. Their design portfolio will be expanded during Level 2. Click here for a link to access the course.
Is all about making pamphlet and multi-section case bindings using a variety of sewing structures, end papers and cover materials. Students are required to make samples and journals and compile research and other evidence for subsequent assessment.
Involves different styles of photo albums using a variety of sewing structures & guards, end papers and cover materials, and making and covering a slip case. Students are required to make samples, albums, a slip case and compile research and other evidence for subsequent assessment. Students should have completed Unit 118 (or have equivalent skills) before beginning this unit.
Involves the techniques required to design and make quarter and half leather, multi section, case bindings; rounded and backed with made endpapers, ribbon markers and hand sewn headbands. Students are required to design, cost, record the making process, and prepare a half leather case binding and other research evidence for subsequent assessment. Students should have completed level 1 or have equivalent skills before beginning this unit.
Involves the techniques required to make various non-adhesive book structures with exposed spines, decorative stitches, stub sewings, pockets and fasteners. Students are required to make to design, cost, record the making process, and prepare samples, develop design ideas, make a non-adhesive binding and compile research and other evidence for subsequent assessment. Students should have completed level 1 or have equivalent skills before beginning this unit.
The 2 units for Level 2 can be completed in any order.
For details regarding level 3 and above please contact Shepherds