Core Surgical Training (Severn)


(A message from your Head of School)

Congratulations on your appointment to the Core Surgical Training Programme and welcome to the HEE South West  - Severn School of Surgery.

This is the start of an exciting and rewarding career for you all and I hope you enjoy your time with us. The School of Surgery prides itself on its ability to work closely with trainees and Trusts within the region to deliver excellence in Surgical Training and you will be the beneficiaries of that. The School of Surgery is always looking for innovative ways to enhance your training and you will be exposed to simulated training and have access to a range of high quality training facilities, material and world class trainers. It is your responsibility to ensure that you make the most out of these opportunities made available to you.

Don’t forget that you represent yourselves, our profession and the School of Surgery in all that you do. I therefore ask that you remain professional, work hard and enjoy your time with us.

Over the next 2 years you will have the opportunity to develop into excellent surgical trainees and go on to higher surgical training with confidence, a strong foundation of knowledge and surgical skill.

Good luck and I look forward to meeting you all.


Mr. Robert Longman
Head of the Severn School of Surgery



(A message from your Training Programme Directors)

Congratulations on your appointment as a Core Trainee in HEE Severn .   We are sure that you will find the programme to be rewarding and exciting as you progress through the early part of your career.

The next two years are designed to develop you into well-rounded, capable trainees who will be able to progress and excel in higher surgical training. We ask that you fully engage and participate in the clinical and educational programmes that are provided for you.

It is essential that you maintain a record of all of your activities as a trainee and this should be done electronically on the ISCP website. You should register before you attend induction. Work Based Assessments are an essential part of this and we suggest that you start collecting these as soon as possible and make the most of every opportunity afforded you.

We aim to make the programme the best of its kind and expect the same high standards of our trainees. We are here to support you to do this and if you find yourself in need of support please don’t hesitate to contact your clinical or educational supervisors, surgical tutors or one of us.

Congratulations again and we look forward to meeting and working with you over the coming years.


Mr Richard Bamford 
Core Surgery-In-General TPD

Mr Tristan Barton 
Core T&O TPD


The Aim of Core Surgical Training


Covers the Severn PGDME Footprint (Cheltenham, Gloucester, Swindon, Bristol, Bath, Taunton) 


The aim of core surgical training is to give aspiring surgeons the opportunity to acquire and develop the knowledge, skills,judgement and professional behavioursrequired to enter Higher Surgical Training in their chosen specialty. Core Surgical Training is undertaken in all of the hospitals in the North. The Southwest School of Surgeryis responsible for the organisation and delivery of training and assessment, under the auspices of Southwest Postgraduate Medical Education. 

The new 2021 curriculum is outcome-based training. However, it will normally be completed in an indicative time of two years. Each two years rotation is usually split into four six-month placements and will contain a combination of specialties from the following list: Cardiothoracic, Vascular Surgery, General Surgery, Plastic Surgery, Paediatric Surgery, Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgery, Urology, Neurosurgery and Cardiothoracic Surgery. On joining a rotation, trainees are required to register with the Intercollegiate Surgical Curriculum Program (ISCP), this will be used to monitor and assess training and development over the ensuing two years. Each trainee is allocated an Educational Supervisor who will oversee this process. 

Core surgical training is offered at the following hospitals: 

  1. Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust  (Cheltenham General or Gloucestershire Royal)

  2. North Bristol NHS Trust - Southmead Hospital, Bristol 

  3. University Hospitals Bristol & Weston NHS Foundation Trust - Bristol Royal Infirmary, Bristol Children's Hospital, Bristol 

  4. Royal United Hospital, Bath 

  5. Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Great Western Hospital,  Swindon 

  6. Somerset NHS Foundation Trust,  Musgrove Park Hospital, Taunton 


Education (as is usual in surgery) is mainly ‘hands on’ however more formal, theoretical education will be arranged allowing trainees to study away from the busy clinical environment, preparing for examinations and developing skills to be used in clinical practice. These training sessions will be compulsory, and each hospital is expected to make core surgical trainees available at the appropriate times during the two-year training program.  

Information on the Core Surgery Regional Training Days & Anatomy & Physiology Training at University of Bristol can be found on the website Events pages.   

The aim of the Core Surgical Training Programme is to prepare young surgeons for entry into higher surgical training. By the end of the two years, we therefore expect trainees to have passed the MRCS examination (, to have demonstrated competence in basic surgical procedures appropriate to their intended career and to have shown good progress in professional development in areas such as audit and research. 

Our rotations are themed in general areas such as General /Vascular /Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgery for those wanting more broad-based training or more specific areas such as Plastic Surgery or ENT. 

Overseeing Core Surgical Training in each Hospital is a Royal College of Surgeons College Tutor. They will be responsible forallocating your Educational Supervisor.  

The Core Surgical Training is outlined in the ISCP website