The passport is designed to be flexible and extendable to meet your specific requirements, without the constraints of traditional programmes or qualifications. It contains a range of units, allowing you to focus on areas of interest and need. For each passport, there are mandatory units you must complete, and a number of optional units you can choose from.

Each programme is available at three levels with simple progression from one level to the next. You can start with either passport 1 or passport 2. Before progressing to passport 3, you should have completed passport 2 or have met an equivalent standard.

  • Passport 1 will prepare you to work at an assistant level or to gain the basic knowledge and skills required to perform tasks if you are new to the National Trust.
  • Passport 2 will prepare you for jobs where you need to take responsibility for tasks and work on your own initiative.
  • Passport 3 will prepare you for roles where you will be involved in decision-making and taking responsibility for others.

Historic Gardens

Gardening for the National Trust is not like the gardening you might do at home. Further details can be found here.

Historic Parklands

The National Trust has in its care over 200 historic designed landscapes. Further details can be found here.

Houses & Collections

The National Trust owns collections and interiors in historic buildings because they are nationally important. Further details can be found here.

Visitor Experience

Our visitors are at the heart of everything we do in the National Trust. Further details can be found here.

How to apply

You can start now by following the simple steps:

  • If you haven’t already, discuss the Heritage Skills Passport with your line manager – it’s essential your line manager is involved from the start of your journey.
  • Apply online from MYlearning – you need to select the level you wish to complete when you apply.
  • Once you’ve applied, your line manager needs to approve your request to start the programme.
  • You’ll receive your welcome pack, with all the instructions and everything you need to complete the passport within one month.
  • The programme starts at your own pace, with units completed in any order you and your line manager agree.
  • When you start the first unit, your first mentor will fill-in any missing details, and you’re ready to go!

Contact us

Alternatively, please get in touch at



The National Trust is lucky enough to have an excellent base of professional individuals nationally, regionally and at property level who can help deliver the Heritage Skills Passport.

Each area in the passport will be supported by specialist mentor colleagues. The mentor will help candidates to develop new skills and knowledge, ensuring that they meet the required standard and that there’s enough evidence included in their portfolio to support this. The mentor reviews the evidence collected and submits the unit once it is complete. These supportive relationships remove the need for unfamiliar external examiners and means that you can work with your everyday colleagues, themselves experts in their field.

Mentors may work with a candidate on one or more units of the passport, depending on their experience and the time available. Being a mentor for the HSP gives an opportunity to pass-on your knowledge and expertise, and support your colleagues in a structured way. A more detailed guide for mentors is available once candidates have applied below.


The HSP is another tool in our managers’ toolkit to help develop and improve the skills, knowledge and understanding of our people. As with other programs of learning and assessment, this will run alongside employees’ day to day work. The HSP offers the following benefits to managers:

  • A robust mechanism to demonstrate the capability of staff members.
  • An opportunity to support the development of staff members within their existing roles.
  • Involvement in the development process, with regular reviews but without significant additional workload
  • An opportunity to match staff members with mentors more experienced in different topics

Managers will help each candidate to complete the passport by planning with them which units they’ll undertake and when it would be best to do them, providing them with support to access any training that they need, reviewing their progress and submitting each unit as it’s completed.

Managers will also ensure that there are mentors available at their site to help each candidate progress through the units and gather the information that they need. Where appropriate, managers may also act as a mentor, in which case they’ll take on additional responsibility.

A more detailed guide for mentors is available once candidates have applied below.