In 1946 two Spaniards had a vision. José Antonio Elola Olaso and Francisco Albert-Vidal dreamed of an international craft skills competition, a professional-quality championship with participants from all over the world. The first Spanish championships for apprentices were a roaring success in 1947.
In 1950, neighbouring Portugal was invited to join in, and since 1953 more and more countries have taken up the challenge. Morocco, France, United Kingdom, Germany and Switzerland entered teams for the International Vocational Training Contest.
Since 1999 the event has been known as WorldSkills. Initially held annually, it has been held every other year since 1973. Australia joined in 1983 but did not send a bricklayer Skillaroo until the following event in 1985 when Australian Bricklayer Glen Brasen won Australia’s first Gold Medal in an international trade skills event. Today, 61 countries and regions take part in this mega event.
Source: http://www.worldskills.org.au and Troy Everett