Worshipful Company of Farriers
Username:   Password:  
The Worshipful Company of Farriers
Promoting the welfare of the horse since 1356

Associate (AWCF)


The Worshipful Company of Farriers founded its modern examination process in 1890, with the Registered Shoeing Smith examination. It had been hoped that this would lead to compulsory registration. This was not to happen for 95 years! To avoid confusion, once all farriers were required to register, the name changed to Diploma of the Worshipful Company of Farriers (DipWCF). In 1907 the Company realised that there was a need for a higher level examination that promoted a farrier's ability to use horse shoeing skills in the treatment of conditions of the foot and equine limb. This was called Associate of the Farriers Company of London (AFCL). It changed its title to The Associate of the Worshipful Company of Farriers (AWCF) at the same time as the DipWCF.

In the mid 1990s the examination board saw that the AWCF examination needed reviewing to encourage more farriers to take it and to promote the study and use of modern methods and materials. A complete overhaul of the syllabus took place. A continual review has now been built into the system so that the examination remains current. Encouragingly in recent exams the number of candidates has begun to rise.

What Are The Examiners Looking For?

They are looking for you to convince them that you have a depth of knowledge of anatomy, conditions and diseases of the foot, and how conformation affects the gait and the foot, and vice versa. You need to show traditional forging skills and be able to apply them to an individual horse. You need to show a range of shoemaking skills in different materials including fabricating. They are assessing your ability to think on your feet when confronted with a task that you might not have experienced. You need to be able to use and have an opinion on the modern materials listed. You need to be comfortable looking at x-rays and assessing a horse with a veterinary surgeon.

The above list of skills is quite wide ranging. However, it is only what one would expect a farrier engaged in remedial or consultancy shoeing to possess. The veterinary examiner is looking to see if you could partner him in treating farriery related conditions. The farrier examiners are looking to see whether they could refer a case to you. All parts of the syllabus are to be taken seriously.

If you acquire the knowledge and skills set out in the syllabus, you will become an Associate of the Worshipful Company of Farriers.

-Dr Simon Curtis PhD HonAssocRCVS FWCF-


Check to see the official list of Associates



  • An Associateship Certificate will be signed by the Master, the Members of Examinations Board, and the Registrar. The Certificate will be numbered and dated.
  • Application to the Livery of the Worshipful Company with over a 40% fine reduction; full Quarterage as a Liveryman must be paid.
  • Eligibility to become a Master Farrier
  • Use of the post-nominals AWCF


Associateship Examination Dates


 16th-18th October 2019 (UK)

Applications must be received by Wednesday 3rd July 2019

24th-26thOctober 2019 (USA)

Applications must be received by Wednesday 10th July 2019

31stOct-1th November 2019 (DENMARK)

Applications must be received by Wednesday 10th July 2019


AWCF Examinations in the UK normally take place at the Defence Animal Training Regiment, Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire. The Sat Nav postcode is LE13 0HX.

Security procedures for entry to the DATR can take some time particularly in the early morning. Those staying in Melton the night before the examination, are advised to obtain their individual and vehicle passes from the DATR guard room on arrival.

The Best Western Sysonby Knoll Hotel (UK) offers a discount to farriers taking the examinations if you book with them directly.

Entry Requirements

  • The examination is open to those who have been Diplomates for a minimum of 24 months (at the time of application).
  • Certified Journeymen Farriers who have gained 24 months farriery experience since passing the AFA CJF test may apply to be registered as a DipWCF holder. They can then apply to sit the AWCF examination. 

           Application form for the CJF-DipWCF certification

           Application for the AWCF may not be made until the DipWCF application has been processed and this could take some weeks.

  • Overseas candidates from who have had a minimum of six years gainful shoeing experience may apply to sit the AWCF exam via a unique fast-track route. Please contact the Company Registrar for further information.


Preparing for the AWCF Exam



The Company has a number of senior farriers and veterinary surgeons appointed as Mentors. These individuals are available by mutual agreement with candidates for regular advice and assistance with both a reading list and preparation tips. A list of Mentors can be provided upon request to the Registrar.


How do I apply?

The examination may be taken in either order. The AWCF must be achieved within three years after the first module has been passed.


AWCF examinations for DipED(Farriery) graduates

All those graduating with the DipED(Farriery) will be allowed to sit the take the relevant WCF Associateship examination on one occasion at 50% of the Examination Fee, providing the exam is taken within 12 months of graduation. Please contact the Company Registrar for further information.


AWCF Award - Military Training Farrier

Army farriers who hold the Advanced Military Farriers Certificate (AMFC) qualification may register for an AWCF.

Formerly known as the Class I, the Military Training Farrier is achieved after the completion of the Advanced Military Farriery Course. The Class I qualification is issued following training as a farrier in the British Army and is equivalent to the Associateship. In the case of Army farriers, the Farriers Registration Council recognises the Army Class I or AMFC as a prescribed examination that is equivalent to the WCF Associate Award.

How do I apply?

Complete the application to be entered onto the register of the Worshipful Company of Farriers and recorded as achieving the Associate of the Worshipful Company of Farriers.

You can submit the application form by post or by email. The fee is normally £250 but for serving personnel who apply within 6 weeks of their Army Trade Test, this is discounted to £125. Payment can be made online here.


Further Information

For further information about the Associateship process, please contact the Registrar & Craft Secretary.

For further information about becoming a member of the Company, please contact the Company Clerk.