Introductory Workshop

Stone of Arc actively promotes traditional techniques

Providing a rare opportunity for people in the Oceania and Asia regions to learn the dry stone construction methods developed over several millennia across the northern hemisphere. A full range of courses are offered to satisfy everyone from hobbyist to guru.

Group 35

Our Training Centre

Set on farmland in the foothills of Mount Arthur near Wellington NSW and including a covered training area, Stone of Arc’s purpose built dry stone training centre is the only one of its kind in the southern hemisphere.

Our training structures are all built to Dry Stone Wall Association (DSWA UK) test standards comprising of different types of stone and incorporating all the styles and features required to advance from beginner through to expert.

To ensure the highest standards are met all courses are delivered by certified DSWA Instructors, and all levels of training align with DSWA structural principles. For those wishing to pursue accreditation, examinations will be conducted by accredited DSWA Examiners.

Glenrock training wall
Accommodation Details

Rustic Onsite Accommodation

A range of rustic onsite accommodation is available from double/triple rooms to camping (all with shared bathroom).

Four rooms are available, 2 double and 2 twin/triple

All rooms come with aircon, heating, linen and amenities.

A basic continental breakfast is included for all overnight guests.

Extended visits welcome

There is much to enjoy in the surrounding area including bush walks, cycle trails, kayak trails, fishing, and cave exploration to name a few.

Our Training Courses

For most people taking an Introductory training course is the best place to start. Even those with some experience may benefit from revisiting the fundamental principles.

Courses provide participants with a clear understanding of the theory and principles of dry stone work, specific techniques, and a metre each of wall to build.

All courses are run over 2 days unless otherwise stated. For participants benefit regular courses are limited to 10 people and demand driven courses are limited to 8.

A reasonable level of experience or completion of an Introductory course is a prerequisite for further courses and practice events.

Stone of Arc provides the following for all course types:

  • An appropriately qualified instructor
  • Tools, safety glasses, and sun protection
  • Lunch, refreshments, and reusable water bottle
  • Alfresco pizza night with your walling chums
  • Discounted bed and breakfast options
  • A certificate of completion
  • Course information booklet
  • Access to ongoing project support

Participants are required to bring:

  • Hat, gloves and strong footwear (preferably steel toed)
  • The desire to get dirty, learn and create!

Regular TRAINING Courses

An introduction to Dry Stone Walling

Our Introductory courses provide participants with enough knowledge and experience to be able to accurately identify traditional walling methods, commence a basic private project, and pursue further learning.


Cheekend Construction and Advanced Stone Shaping

All walls need to start and end somewhere so understanding the fundamentals and significance of a cheekend (or wall head) is vital to any construction you might aspire to create.


Building a Retaining Wall

This course focuses on the fundamentals of constructing a retaining wall. Retaining walls are built in a way that enables them to hold back earth and rock.


Crafting a Curve

Building on previously attained skills, this course focuses on the fundamentals of constructing a curve.


Demand Driven TRAINING Courses

A Women’s Introduction to Dry Stone Walling

In addition to all the elements of the standard Introduction to Dry Stone Walling course, this option covers specific tips for women in a supportive and exclusively female environment.


Lunky Construction

Typically used as a stock control feature (enabling sheep to pass where cattle can’t) lunky’s can also be used to straddle waterways or other obstacles.


Building on a Slope

This course focuses on appropriately stepped foundations, equidistant placement of through stones, horizontal coursing and self-supporting placement of cope stones.


Corner Construction

This course focuses on the fundamentals of constructing a square corner. You will develop your skills in accurately selecting and placing stones to tie both sections of wall together with an even inner and outer batter.


Practice Events

Stone of Arc facilitates events for people to practice and develop their dry stone skills


Building a Stile

This course allows participants to learn and practice the construction techniques of both a Step-stile and Squeeze-stile.


Building a keystone Arch

This course introduces the use of a former. You will learn how to create and set up a former, how to build over it, and remove it.


Building a Pillar

Pillars are an attractive addition to a wall head or gateway. This course focuses on the integration of quoins and methods to maintain a vertically accurate and stable structure.


Random and Vertical Walling Techniques

Here we have an opportunity to move away from standard coursed horizontal walls and apply the same fundamental principles to random stone placement and vertical stone placement.


Accreditation Courses and Test Events

For those who aspire to become a qualified or professional dry stone waller, or to have their existing skills and experience formally recognised, we offer a range of test specific features and pre-test preparation courses for all four levels of the Craftsman Certification scheme. Test events will take place on the final day of test preparation courses. Applications for tests must be submitted 6 weeks prior to a test event. Register your interest or call us for a discussion.

In addition to the numerous courses we provide covering structures pertinent to the certification scheme, test preparation courses offer a detailed insight into the standards required by the DSWA UK. We also look at ways to improve your speed and efficiency for the timed test elements and offer significant pre-test practice opportunities to prepare you for success.

DSWA Craftsman Certification Scheme courses – Initial

In the presence of the Examiner/s, candidates are required to strip down and rebuild a straight-forward free-standing 2.5 square metre section of wall within a single 7 hour period.


DSWA Craftsman Certification Scheme courses – Intermediate

This certificate is the first professional level qualification in the DSWA’s craftsman certification scheme.


DSWA Craftsman Certification Scheme courses – Advanced

This certificate has two parts which must be conducted separately and in order.


Master Craftsman Certificate

This certificate has two parts which must be conducted separately and in order. Candidates must hold the Advanced Level 3 certificate before applying for this certificate.


DSWA Instructor Training

For people holding Intermediate Level 2 certification or above, an online Instructor training course will be available.


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