A relatively small number of employers may offer a traineeship. They may not ask for formal qualifications, but some subjects at National 4 or 5 such as English, Maths and science or technological subjects will be an advantage.
The British Horological Institute (BHI) offers a Level 3 Diploma in Clock and Watch Servicing by distance learning. This can take up to 12 months.
Birmingham City University offers a degree course in Horology. Check their website for entry requirements.
West Dean College in Sussex offers a Postgraduate Diploma in Conservation of Clocks and Related Objects, and a Graduate Diploma in Conservation of Clocks. For entry you need a degree or technical qualification in a relevant subject or experience in horology.
Most openings are with small employers, either specialised repair firms or retail jewellers. Some watch and clock repairers may work in centralised service workshops or in the museum service.
the ability to work on your own and plan your workload
a steady hand and agile fingers to do intricate work
to be able to take measurements and prepare technical drawings
good business skills if you are self-employed.
You will train through practical experience with an employer, combined with specialist courses.
The training courses are only available in a limited number of areas, so you may have to attend courses away from home or to study by distance learning.
You could study further at the BHI with qualifications such as Level 4 Diploma in the Servicing and Repair of Clocks/Watches and Level 5 Diploma in the Repair, Restoration and Conservation of Clocks/Watches.
The British School of Watchmaking in Manchester runs a one year course (1800 hours) or two year course (3000 hours) affiliated to the Watchmakers of Switzerland Training and Education Programme (WOSTEP) syllabus. Students are sponsored by the watch companies that fund the school. It may be possible to apply as a fee paying student.
You may be able to specialise in a particular field, such as restoring longcase (grandfather) clocks.
With experience, you may be able to work in the related field of manufacturing and repairing other precision instruments.
Many watch and clock repairers go on to become self-employed, or run a franchise in a department store or shopping centre.
Horology is the science of the measurement of time and the art of clock making.
The British Horological Institute (BHI) is the UK organisation for those with an interest in, or involvement in, clocks and timekeeping. There are membership grades for both amateurs and professionals.