A stonemasonry lecturer at Bath College with a career spanning 42 years has been chosen for a special industry award recognising his dedication to his craft.
Paul Maggs, who works at the college, will be presented with The Master Craftsman’s Certificate by The Worshipful Company of Masons next month.
He has been singled out for his role in a number of prominent restoration projects, as well as his teaching career at the college.
The 58-year-old said: “It’s almost like you’re at the top of your trade. It’s just about the highest accolade you can get in the industry.
“I was really chuffed to be nominated, I didn’t expect it to be honest with you. Normally I just keep my head down and get on with what I do.
“It’s very rewarding teaching at the college, especially when you get a student who has come from school and hasn’t been doing well.
“Suddenly they find there’s something they are good at.”
Mr Maggs followed in his grandfather and father’s footsteps when he started training with G Williams & Sons, on Windsor Bridge Road, as a teenager.
He completed a four-year apprenticeship at the City of Bath Technical College before going on to work onsite at Wells Cathedral.
During his early career, he travelled the country restoring well-known landmarks, including Swallow Royal Hotel in Bristol, Swindon Town Hall and Windsor Castle’s Round Tower.
His career came full circle when he was appointed as a work-based trainer at Bath College in 2005 and a stonemasonry lecturer in 2007.
Mr Maggs, who lives in Keynsham, said: “I met the Queen when I was working at Windsor Castle, not in any formal situation, but she saw me fall off a lorry and went to make sure I was all right.
“There was nothing broken, just a couple bruises. I bounced up off the floor and said I was fine. I used to see a lot of the country and there were always challenges to overcome, it was never boring.
“Some people think stonemasonry is a dying trade, but it’s definitely not. Over the last five years there’s been a big explosion in the use of natural stone in Bath.
“The best thing about being a stonemason is the job you do will be there for the rest of your life.”
Mr Maggs will receive his award at a black tie event at the Fishmonger’s Hall in London on 15th February.
Daisy Walsh, Head of Technology at Bath College, said: “I am extremely proud of Paul’s achievement. This top accolade is testament to Paul’s dedication to the craft.
“Bath College is honoured to have such talented teacher on our stonemasonry team. This means our students are set high expectations and benefit from experts in their field.”