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Harbour Master apprenticeship

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The harbour master apprenticeship can be used to develop new entrants and to upskill or reskill the existing workforce.

Occupational profile

The broad purpose of a harbour master is to enforce regulations and industry codes of practice in a particular port, harbour or marina in order to ensure the safety of vessel navigation, the security of the harbour, the protection of the marine environment, and the safe operation of the port facilities.

Harbour masters are responsible for running a port through powers and responsibilities granted by statute. They have the power to permit vessels to enter or leave the port, as well as overseeing vessel traffic movement in the port approach and in the port area.

More generally, harbour masters oversee the planning and execution of port marine operations such as designating where vessels should lie within the harbour, vessel traffic management services, the provision of pilotage services, conservancy and any other marine-related operation.

Harbour masters work in close cooperation with commercial partners to ensure the maximum utilisation of port facilities as well as co-ordinating and managing responses to port incidents and emergency situations.


This is a level 6 apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

Apprentices without level 2 English and maths will need to achieve this level prior to taking their end point assessment.

For those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement, the apprenticeship’s English and maths minimum requirement is entry level 3. A British Sign Language (BSL) qualification is an alternative to the English qualification for those whose primary language is BSL.

Typical duration

48 months, excluding end point assessment.


This apprenticeship has a maximum funding cap of £23,000.

The apprenticeship programme is funded in one of the following ways via the employer’s apprenticeship service account.

Non-levy paying employersLevy paying employers
100% Government funded if the apprentice is 16-21 years.Paid using the apprenticeship levy.
100% Government funded if the employer has less than 50 employees and the apprentice is 22-24 years and previously been in care or has an education, health and care plan (EHCP).If the levy runs out, the same rules apply as non-levy paying employers.
95% Government funded in all other cases with a 5% employer contribution.

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