The GBCT Trainee Scheme


We are delighted to announce that the new intake of Camera Trainees have now been successfully working on a variety of feature films and television drama productions for the past few months!

Please contact the Guild Office on 020 8813 1999 or [email protected]if you would like to hire any of our trainees to work on your production.





This scheme is only open to people who have the right to live and work in the UK.

The GBCT Camera Trainee scheme is aimed at future technicians who want to work predominantly on fiction productions. The Guild has been running its Trainee programme for several years now. To ensure relevance and to meet industry needs, the GBCT Board has developed a more inclusive and flexible programme that involves a great number of Guild members to teach and further support trainees – as well as ensure that the skills gained meet the highest GBCT standards.

Depending on how buoyant the industry is, it usually takes about eighteen months to two years for trainees to get sufficient experience of working on a variety of productions – including feature film, television drama or commercials – before making a decision as to how, why and where they should go on to develop their careers. Most trainees move on to becoming 2nd AC’s/Clapper Loaders; others through additional training, channel their energies into being DITs (digital imaging technicians), video assist operators or take electrical qualifications and move across to becoming electricians. Some trainees have been known to move into the documentary or factual entertainment side of the industry as Camera Assistants. Others have started their own companies shooting material for corporate and online content programmes. A few have even gone on to be trainees to specialise in either shooting underwater or aerial camera work. We are very pleased with how successful the Guild’s camera trainees are and even prouder to find many trainees applying to become full members of the Guild once they’ve achieved sufficient experience and credits as 2AC’s.

There are no hard and fast rules to becoming a camera trainee – there are no boxes to tick that guarantee you a place. But you must have a proven interest in the art and craft of cinematography, be technically competent and know how to add up figures properly! It’s also important to have a good work ethic, be a team player, have patience, nice manners and the ability to take/receive orders – even to think out of the box occasionally! Having a good memory is essential. The ability to make good tea and coffee is of paramount importance!

The selection process to become a GBCT camera trainee is rigorous and competitive. That said, if you are observed bullying or undermining a fellow worker, people might think you are unable to be a valued team member – and that is no good at all!

What follows is an outline of what will happen in the future:

The Board agrees to schedule a new trainee scheme. Details and dates are then put onto the Guild’s website, various social media outlets and also sent to several different organisations to spread the word giving people ideas of when each stage of the application process is. A deadline date is given for applications to be received into the Guild office. Applications can be sent via email ([email protected]) or by post to the GBCT’s office.

A group of Guild members get together and sift through all the applications, preparing a short list of people to be interviewed.

Interviews are arranged and another group of Guild members form the interview panel. This panel meets the interviewees and prepares a shortlist of 12-14 people to attend the trainee course which those selected are invited to attend

A 6 or 7-day course specifically designed for Guild Camera Trainees is then arranged and run for those shortlisted. (The people selected are expected to pay for the course but it will be the best value for money they will spend on their careers.) A further set of Guild members are tutors on the course with other GBCT members popping in and out to meet the trainees and help out if required. Other Guild members attend specifically to provide an informal talk about their specialist roles in the industry

On the final day of the course, even more Guild members attend and test the trainees to see what they have learned and absorbed (called the assessors). The trainees are given three different formal types of test – oral; written; and practical. In addition, the assessors observe the trainees at ‘work’ on the different tasks they are set

When the course is complete, all the Guild members involved at various stages of the process as described above, then meet and/or embark on email discussions about which of the trainees should be selected

Finally, the trainees are selected - everyone is informed of the decision

Trainee Grips

All Trainee Grips are trained, monitored and assessed by the Grips Branch of BECTU

If you need a Grip Trainee, your Key Grip should go to the Trainee Finder app on the Grips website:

Trainee Script Supervisor

All Trainee Script Supervisors are monitored by the Script Supervisors Group.

If you need a Script Supervisor/Continuity Trainee, please either contact the ScreenSkills Trainee Finder/Co-ordiantor: or contact the Guild with your requirements and these will be forwarded to the Script Supervisors Group.

The Guild of British Camera Technicians

Panavision Building, Metropolitan Centre, 
Bristol Road, Greenford, UB6 8GD

Tel: 020 8813 1999 Email: [email protected]

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