Monthly Archives: September 2015


Sydney Industry Rallies to Find Solutions to Bricklaying Skills Shortage

In the light of ongoing challenges in meeting the bricklayer shortage in NSW, the industry joined together for discussions on the evening of Wednesday, September 23 at Rooty Hill RSL. The night was co-ordinated by ABBTF NSW, and manufacturers Adbri Masonry, Austral Masonry, Austral Bricks, Baines Masonry, Boral Bricks, Namoi Valley Bricks and PGH Bricks and Pavers. The three hour meeting was attended by 80 guests including builders, bricklaying contractors, Group Training Organisations and industry associations.

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Namoi Valley Bricks Provides Support for the Trade

We hear often about the challenge and the wins in addressing the bricklayer skill shortage in Sydney, but valuable support from regional brick manufacturers such as Namoi Valley (NV) Bricks often goes unnoticed.

NV Bricks at Gunnedah is constantly on the lookout for young talented people to start an apprenticeship with local tradesmen and is a great advocate for ABBTF’s program to increase the number of bricklaying apprentices entering our trade.

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A Positive Attitude, Self-Reliance and the Bricklaying Certificate allowed Ricky Ellis to Overcome the Odds

Earlier this year I was very fortunate to meet Ricky Ellis, when notifying him of his win of Become-a-Bricklayer’s 10,000th ‘Like’ Facebook competition.

His is a really inspiring story about a brickie who had, and still has, the odds stacked against him. He’s got his own way of expressing his journey to his very successfully current life, making it sound easy! But I’ll let him tell the story. I found myself wondering, could I have achieved this if I was in his shoes, see what you think?

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So You Think a Bricklaying Apprenticeship is Hard Work?

We all know the challenges of getting through a bricklaying apprenticeship in NSW, especially living in the most expensive city in the country namely Sydney.

The Award wage for apprentices is a national Award and trying to stretch apprenticeship pay in an expensive environment is particularly difficult despite the Incentives. First year out of school you need to get up in the morning earlier than you ever have and physically, you’re working much harder than you ever thought you would or could.

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