Farriery (England)

Framework status: Current (latest) issue

Framework details

Framework ID: FR03176
Issue number: 3
Issued: 16 December 2014

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Farriery (England)
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Issued by

Contact name: Sandie Absalom
Telephone number: 02476 696996
Please download the framework for email contact information.


Defining Apprenticeships

An Apprenticeship is a job with an accompanying skills development programme under an Apprenticeship Agreement designed by employers in the sector. It allows the apprentice to gain technical knowledge and real practical experience, along with functional and personal skills, required for their immediate job and future career. These are acquired through a mix of learning in the workplace, formal off the job training and the opportunity to practice and embed new skills in a real work context. This broader mix differentiates the Apprenticeship experience from training delivered to meet narrowly focused job needs.

All apprentices commencing their Apprenticeship must have an Apprenticeship Agreement between the employer and the apprentice. This can be used to reinforce the understanding of the requirements of the Apprenticeship.

On completion of the Apprenticeship the apprentice must be able to undertake the full range of duties, in the range of circumstances appropriate to the job, confidently and competently to the standard set by the industry.

The Farriery Industry 

Farriery is a specialist profession and under the Farriers (Registration) Act 1975 as amended, farriery is defined as ‘any work in connection with the preparation or treatment of a horse for the immediate reception of a shoe thereon, the fitting by nailing or otherwise of a shoe to the foot or the finishing off of such work to the foot’.  There are around 2,640 registered farriers in the UK and around 300 ATFs.

A farrier is a skilled crafts person with the skills and knowledge of shoeing all types of equine feet, whether normal or defective, making shoes to suit all types of animal and working conditions and of devising corrective measures that will help compensate for faulty limb action.

Lantra’s Skills Assessment 2010 found that micro-businesses dominate the land-based and environmental sector with 97% employing fewer than ten members of staff. Farriery is a profession where the majority are self-employed or work within a small company and so it is estimated that the number of farriery businesses is equal to the number of farriers at 2,260 in England. This represents 1% of the businesses and employment within the sector, however, farriers support the equine industry, which is a larger industry representing 14% of the sector in England. The National Equine Database estimates that there are a million or more horses in the UK and therefore it is important for farriers to have the skills and knowledge required to work within the profession.

The Farriery Apprenticeship offers an Advanced Apprenticeship which is the main entry route within the UK into the farriery profession due to the experience required by the apprentice and the legislation involved.

There are other entry routes for those with professional experience or recognised qualifications e.g. the UK Army runs a training scheme and a few overseas qualifications are recognised.

Therefore, the Advanced Apprenticeship is valued by the profession as evidenced by the consistent completions of the Advanced Apprenticeship.  To become a Registered Farrier a four year and two month Advanced Apprenticeship with an FRC Approved Training Farrier must be completed.  Over the past three years, the number of completions on the Farriery Apprenticeship has fluctuated between 52 and 92 per annum.

Completions of Advanced Apprenticeships


  • Total – 89


  • Total – 92


  • Total – 52

To register onto the Advanced Apprenticeship a prospective apprentice must be accepted by an ATF who must ensure that they meet the entry requirements and are prepared to train. Apprentice farriers work on behalf of their ATF who oversees and takes responsibility for their professional behaviour and quality of their work throughout their training. 

Qualified farriers are registered with the Farriers Registration Council (FRC) which can provide a list of all registered farriers.

The FRC can provide prospective apprentices with a current ATF list.

During their training, apprentice farriers will work under the supervision of their Approved Training Farrier, learning to:

  • Handle and restrain horses
  • Check the horse's leg, foot and hoof
  • Discuss and agree the horse’s shoeing requirements
  • Cut away excess hoof growth and make sure the horse is balanced correctly
  • Choose the most appropriate shoe for the horse relating to its size, foot condition, activity, work and working conditions
  • Fit the shoe and complete any finishing off work
  • Adjust the shape of the shoe if necessary using the relevant tools
  • Make tools and horseshoes
  • Maintain the forge and equipment.

Throughout the review Lantra, worked closely with the farriery industry, Approved Training Farriers, Registered Farriers and representative organisations and associations including: The British Farriers and Blacksmiths Association, The Farriers Registration Council and The Worshipful Company of Farriers.

Completion of the Advanced Apprenticeship could lead to becoming a registered farrier.

Further information on the farriery industry can be found at www.lantra.co.uk

Download framework

Farriery (England)
(PDF document 2.10 MB)