How can Grandfather Rights (Industry Accreditation) CSCS holders renew their cards?

Industry News

How can Grandfather Rights (Industry Accreditation) CSCS holders renew their cards?

The Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) has announced that it will be withdrawing the Industry Accreditation/Grandfather Rights route to a CSCS card from 31st December 2024.

How did the Grandfather Rights (Industry Accreditation) scheme work?

Industry Accreditation (also known as Grandfather Rights) allowed workers to obtain CSCS cards based on the strength of an employers’ recommendation, instead of them having to complete a recognised qualification (such as an NVQ).

When did the scheme end?

The Grandfather Rights/Industry Accreditation route to apply for a CSCS card was closed to new applicants in 2010. Those already holding a card through this scheme however, were still able to renew their cards up until January 2020. Many of these cards are still valid and in use today and will remain so until 31st December 2024. After this date, the only way to renew an existing card or apply for a new CSCS card will be to have completed a competence-based assessment (NVQ) at the appropriate level.

But I’ve been in the industry for years! I’m doing the job every day, now I need to do an NVQ?

Unfortunately yes, you will now need to complete an NVQ in order to retain or apply for a CSCS card. Luckily however, we at CADUK have developed a ‘fast-track’ style of NVQ assessment specifically aimed at those who have been in the industry for a long time and are clearly competent. The whole assessment is conducted through ‘professional discussion’ (online via Zoom) and involves no written work, no classroom-based elements, and no visits to site. This enables very experienced candidates to complete their qualifications within weeks, rather than months or years.

In a nutshell, you’re telling an NVQ assessor (who are all construction professionals themselves) how you carry out your role and showing them the evidence (documents, photos, videos) from your projects that prove that you can do the job.

How is the ‘fast-track’ NVQ assessment process different to the standard assessment?

The ‘fast-track‘ (discussion-based) assessment is only suitable for very experienced candidates, i.e. those who have been in the role for a number of years, are confident in their own abilities and have no problem talking ‘off the cuff’ about their work, projects and processes without significant mentoring from their assessor. These are the candidates that aren’t necessarily looking to ‘learn how’ to do the job, they just want confirmation that the job that they already do is carried out competently and safely.

Less-experienced candidates would undoubtedly struggle to respond to these ‘off the cuff’ verbal questions in the same way since there’s likely to be several areas of their NVQ where they have had limited or no exposure. These candidates may need much more help, guidance and mentoring from their assessor along their NVQ journey to’ bring them up’ to the required level. The assessor may even need to work in partnership with their employer to arrange for them to gain experience/exposure in certain areas before they can complete a particular element of their NVQ.  For these candidates we recommend that they complete their NVQs through our standard ‘written-work’ (online ePortfolio) style assessment. This way they can progress at their own pace, learn, develop themselves along the way and ultimately complete the qualification knowing that they are a better Supervisor or Manager for having done so.

How can I tell if I’m suitable for the ‘fast-track’ assessment?

First we’ll ask you to complete a ‘profile tool’ questionnaire for your chosen qualification and send it to us with a copy of your CV. The profile tool questionnaire helps us identify any potential areas of concern and ensures that you have access to the required evidence (i.e. workplace documents).

One of our assessors will review your documents and speak with you directly to determine whether you would be best suited to the discussion (fast-track) assessment or the standard written work (ePortfolio) assessment.

An assessor will only approve you to enrol onto a qualification if they are 100% sure that you are capable of achieving it. Once approved by an assessor, you can start the process at any time.

How long would a ‘fast-track’ NVQ take to achieve?

Ultimately, achievement of your NVQ is down to you and how motivated you are to have it completed. The aim of the fast-track assessment is to have the whole qualification completed in 4 weeks or less, however all candidates have 12 months in which to complete their qualification. 

Which NVQs do you offer that provide access to Gold and Black CSCS cards?

CADUK offer the following NVQs for Supervisors and Managers that will enable candidate to apply for Gold & Black CSCS cards, our Level 6 and 7 NVQs also provide access to Chartered Status with The CIOB:

Gold CSCS Card qualifications (click the links below for more info):
Black CSCS Card qualifications (click the links below for more info):
How can I take this forward?

To apply for any of these qualifications, please click the appropriate link (above) and send us an enquiry via the form on the page and we’ll be in touch!

Alternatively, feel free to give us a call on 01952 287 366 or send us an email to

Comments (3)

  1. James C

    I have been in the construction industry for nearly 30 working in structural steelwork, I currently hold a black card and would like information about obtaining a Level 7 NVQ qualification.

    Many Thanks

    James C

  2. Duncan Spier

    I’ve been working in the roofing/construction industry for 27 years. Starting at 16 years old, learning single ply roofing, built up felt roofing, installing large installations, supervising gangs.moving on to working for waterproofing manufacturers, training roofers. Moving into Contracts management which is my current role. I have a blue skilled workers card with accreditation A in single ply roofing which barely covers my full experience over the years in the industry. I need to know the best route to get this resolved and to keep my qualification to fit Al aspects of my experience in all disciplines.

    Please help and advise

  3. Steven scott

    Hi I’ve been in the industry for 40 years as a bricklayer , how would I’m interest in a NVQ and a blue card . What happens next regards Steve

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