Emma Dexter, Lecturer in Stonemasonry, has been nominated by the Worshipful Company of Masons for the first City and Guilds Masons Livery Company Prize.
Each year various City of London Livery Companies award prizes to people they feel have excelled in particular fields. The award to Emma is for her role as a tutor teaching City and Guilds, who has consistently displayed the highest standards of professional skill and endeavour. The award has been given by the Master and Wardens of the Worshipful Company of Masons, as advised by the Craft and Training Committee.
Emma’s experience in the trade spans twenty-four years, and over that time she has accrued numerous accolades for her incredible work. In 2000, after completing a four year traditional stonemasonry and carving apprenticeship at York Minster, Emma was admitted as a Freeman of the City of York ‘by servitude’ (completion of an apprenticeship bound by a Master craftsman who is already a Freeman of the City of York). This meant she was granted the Freedom of the City of York and became a member of the Guild of Freemen of York. She was the first person to be admitted as a Freeman through servitude for 40 years.
Emma joined Moulton College in 2015, having spent some years as a freelance stonemason, carver, artist, teacher/lecturer and pursuing post-graduate education. In 2016, Emma was nominated and admitted to the Freedom of The Worshipful Company of Masons. This selection was for Emma’s role as a Lecturer and Stonemasonry course manager, continuing the teaching of traditional skills of stonemasonry and carving. As a Freeman of one of the ancient guilds this meant that she also gained Freedom of the City of London. Find out more about ‘Freedom of the City’ at the end of this page.
Emma will be giving a talk on her work and the exciting world of Stonemasonry on the 1st of May at our Pitsford site. To secure your place click here.
Ann Turner, MBE Principal, at Moulton College said: ‘We are immensely proud of Emma’s successes over the years, and this latest achievement simply highlights how much of a credit Emma is to the college. Since starting her work at Moulton, Emma has transformed the Stonemasonry department. Her hard work and strong reputation within the profession has secured exciting work placements, strong industry links, external projects and funding to enhance the Moulton experience. We’ll have our fingers crossed on the awards night!’
There are only six stonemasonry colleges in England – and Moulton College is one of these. Students on the courses, guided by Emma and her team, develop the traditional skills required, with hands-on experience of working with natural stone in preparation for their future careers within the stonemasonry trade.
Emma commented: I’m completely overwhelmed to have been nominated for this award. It’s a great honour. I’ve been working hard to pass on traditional practices of stonemasonry and stone carving to a new generation in order to help preserve these skills and it’s fantastic to think that this is recognised.’
Inspired to find out more about stonemasonry and the course offered at Moulton College? Click here for details. Stonemasonry is just one of the many excellent construction areas at Moulton. Find out more about the other opportunities here.
A little bit about stonemasonry
Stonemasonry is one of the oldest trades in the human history, and involves the creation of sculptures, structures and buildings using stone. An artisan craft, the process can be incredibly complex and revolves around precise measurements and detail. This visual trade produces magnificent structures which form much of what you can see within cathedrals, churches, stately homes, monuments, new-builds and other bespoke projects. In 1878, City & Guilds was founded by the Livery Companies to ensure the quality and training of craftsmen and is the awarding body of City & Guilds qualifications. For further information click here.
What does ‘Freedom of the City’ actually mean?
This term stems from medieval times when the practice of granting respected citizens ‘freedom from serfdom’ used to have great importance in affirming that the recipient enjoyed privileges, such as the right to trade and own property and protection within the town. When a recipient of this award is granted freedom, this means that they are granted certain rights in the city, e.g. being allowed to drive a herd of sheep over London Bridge without paying.