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Improve Your Structural Skills - Is That Crack Serious? – Todmorden, West Yorkshire - 5th March

Tod College, Burnley Road, Todmorden, West Yorkshire, OL14 7BX - £125 + VAT plus booking fee

The training will be based at Tod College, the centre of Todmorden – easily accessible from Manchester, Leeds, York, Huddersfield and all surrounding areas.

Why you should do this training course

This training session is focused on traditional buildings.   Old buildings are different to new buildings in many ways and they can move, crack and distort quite easily.  Clients might be worried and as professionals we need to be able to understand what we are looking at and when a crack, or other symptom of movement, might be something which needs an intrusive repair.

We will use many examples of typical problems that can be found and might cause a building structure to move as a way to help you be better skilled at making an informed assessment.

You will be within a safe and nurtured group of like-minded people.   Use the opportunity to ask any questions that arise.  There is no such thing a silly question.

By the end of the training you will be able to do and know the following..:

  • Understand how and why buildings may sometimes crack or move
  • Diagnosis and decision making leading to options for the client
  • Have a greater awareness of what is serious, and what isn’t
  • How to use photos in your report
  • Have better confidence in yourself
  • Understand about writing a professional and well presented report for your client


This course will cover many issues including..:

  • What does the client really need to know?
  • Understanding the building and its context
  • Consequences of alterations and additions
  • Subsidence, and how it is different to other types of structural movement
  • Drains failures
  • Impact of trees
  • Monitoring options
  • Recommendations and prioritising actions the client should take

Course Format

This training is provided in-person.

Develop confidence and competence in your structural inspection and report writing skills to improve the quality of your work, reduce the risk of negligence claims and provide a better service for your client.

With specific reference to older buildings, the day will look at the inspection process, diagnosis, decision making and report writing.  Develop a decision-making process that leads to justifiable, practical and pragmatic advice for clients.

A structural inspection within a building survey should be far more than simply seeing a crack or a bowing wall and immediately creating considerable concern of a structural failure.  The client expects more than this snap judgement.





This training would suit professionals from a wide variety of disciplines including residential surveyors and valuers, building surveyors, architects, and structural engineers at all levels of training or experience.

This training is open and available to everyone.  Please do consider your own personal circumstances and your ability to use stairs as this is very likely to apply to the venue, town walk and/or any private property visit.  There may be uneven terrain and during any walkabout we may be crossing roads. Do let us know if you require any reasonable adjustments and we can discuss this further and try to adapt where possible.

Case Study Examples

We will be based at Tod College and there will be an opportunity for a guided look at how the building is constructed and how very large loads are handled by the structure.

The day will be flexible and will be adjusted to suit the delegates.   As these are small group sessions there will be plenty of opportunity to ask questions and discuss matters that arise during the day. Feel free to raise matters that you wish to consider and discuss.

Typical Programme

(Hot drinks trolley provided mid-morning/afternoon).

9:30 – 9:45 – Arrival

10:00 to 12:30 – Talk and discussions

12:30 to 13:15 – Sandwich lunch provided

13:15 –  During the afternoon sessions, the presentation will continue and we will do a short walk in the vicinity of the college.  We will, as a group, discuss the buildings we see and how to write about structural assessment in a building survey report.

16:00 – Q&A – Close and depart.


This training will provide about 6 hours of formal CPD.

Training Instructor

This course will be taught by one of the leading surveyors in the country:  Prof. Duncan Philips FRICS

Duncan is one of the UK’s most experienced Chartered Building Surveyors regarding historic and Listed Buildings, having been doing this work for 35 years.   He runs Listed Building Surveys and he was Chair of the RICS Building Conservation Steering Group from 2017-2023.  He is the lead author of the new RICS Professional Standard – Conservation of Heritage Buildings and Assets, which will be published in 2024.  Duncan teaches building surveying, architectural history, building pathology and building conservation to undergraduate, postgraduate and mature students and also to the general public and the trades.


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