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IOL Bushcraft PPG

IOL Bushcraft PPG Home Page

About the Bushcraft Professional Practice Group


The Bushcraft PPG was founded in 2007 with the aim of promoting best practice in a growing industry. Our main aim was to ensure practitioners delivering short, half day sessions of bushcraft skills, were sufficiently competent to deliver those sessions safely. To achieve this we developed the Bushcraft Competency Certificate, which assesses a practitioners ability in a range of bushcraft skills. We also developed a series of workshops where PPG members, IOL members, and all comers can learn new skills and competencies.

Our aims today remain the same. To that end we are aiming to offer two Bushcraft PPG conferences a year, providing a chance for members to network and upskill. We have developed the Bushcraft Competency Award and the Bushcraft Competency Diploma to stand either side of the established Certificate, as well as a Level 2 Bushcraft Skills Award. The awards continue to grow in recognition and take-up and we will support and evolve them as required.

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Bushcraft PPG Committee

Chair - Gary Johnston

Secretary - Kevan Palmer

Co-Treasurers - Nick Winder & Christopher Lundregan

Membership Engagement - Mel Grenfell

Committee - Christopher Grice, Luschka van Onselen




The IOL Bushcraft Professional Practice Group is committed to shaping and developing good practice in bushcraft with organisations, teachers, leaders and instructors.

IOL Statement of Good Practice on Bushcraft Competency



IOL Bushcraft Awards

L2 Bushcraft Skills Award (for pupils and learners)

L3 Bushcraft Competency Award (for instructors - 5 units)

L3 Bushcraft Competency Certificate (for teachers and instructors - 8 units)

L3 Bushcraft Competency Diploma (for teachers and instructors - 16 units)

IOL Bushcraft Competency Assessors




Get in touch with the committee to get answers to your question, no matter if it is big or small.

Attend an IOL Bushcraft Professional Practice Group event and benefit from the experience, passion and collective wisdom of professionals in the field.

Resources for Practitioners

IOL Bushcraft Facebook Page

IOL Bushcraft Accredited Courses

How do I become an IOL Approved Bushcraft Provider?

New providers

The process for new providers to be approved to deliver the IOL Bushcraft Competency Award, IOL Bushcraft Competency Certificate, or IOL Bushcraft Competency Diploma is:

  1. Read through the Course Specification and contact the IOL Bushcraft PPG and discuss your intentions and experience for delivering the course
  2. Design a scheme of work for your course that can:
    1. Best meet the needs and capabilities of your expected learners, and
    2. Satisfy the requirements of the award
  3. Complete the standard IOL Course Accreditation Application process
  4. Gain approval from the IOL Bushcraft PPG – usually following a site visit
  5. Complete annual renewals and attend standardisation and development meetings to support the quality assurance process

Current BCC providers

Existing providers for the IOL Bushcraft Competency Certificate (BCC) who wish to deliver the Bushcraft Competency Diploma should get in touch with the Bushcraft PPG Executive to discuss the options available.


Bushcraft Events

Bushcraft News

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Bushcraft?

Bushcraft is a term for the skills our ancestors used, up until surprisingly recently, to tread softly on the land and survive and live well with what nature provides us. The skill range is vast but includes, for example, fire lighting, tracking, shelter building, bow making, flint snapping and so on. The more you learn, the more you realise there is to learn!

How does Bushcraft link into outdoor learning?

Over the last 20 years there has been a huge growth in the numbers of outdoor providers offering bushcraft as part of a programme, or as the main theme of a course. This is because it has been shown to have a great impact on peoples feeling of wellbeing, achievement, fulfilment, and in so doing it allows youngsters who are not academic to develop skills in an area they can find fascinating and engaging. Many aspects of school curricular can be covered or invigorated through bushcraft skills.

Who can join the PPG?

We welcome anyone who uses a level of bushcraft in their practise as an outdoor practitioner, or who wishes to do so. We have some members who attend courses for their own interest and we are equally happy with their input. Our members range in age from 17 to over 70, skills are for all.

What do I get for joining the Bushcraft PPG?

As a member you get a Bushcraft polo shirt, regular newsletters, a vote in guiding the actions of the committee, heavily discounted rates for attending PPG workshops (attending one repays more than your membership!), access to advice from some of the country’s leading exponents of bushcraft.

How long has the Bushcraft PPG existed?

Originally the PPG was a Special Interest Group (SIG) within the IOL. It was formed about ten years ago when a group of bushcraft teachers, who were members of the IOL, recognised a need for ensuring safety and quality in the growing field of bushcraft provision. Forming a SIG allowed them to develop what is now the Bushcraft Competency Certificate as a measure of a persons skill level, with the support of the IOL. After being a SIG for 8 years, IOL approved it changing to a PPG, recognising the work done so far.

What happens at Bushcraft workshops?

We hold about 4 workshop events in a year at various locations around the country. Each one has six 2-hour workshops on individual topics e.g. build a figure 4 trap, variations on fire building, make a stool , basics of tracking, make string from wild materials, build a primitive bow and so on. Each attendee must be prepared to camp and provide their own food. Fires are usually available for cooking on. Toilet facilities vary but are not unhygienic or too rustic! There may be a PPG meeting where plans are discussed and votes taken if required, and there is usually a lot of social interaction around the fire in the evening. The whole thing lasts for about 30 hours.



Warwick Mill Business Centre, Warwick Bridge, Carlisle, Cumbria, CA4 8RR

+44 (0)1228 564580



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