A Day in the Life of an Apprentice Bricklayer

This week, we caught up with Liam McHugh, one of our first-year adult apprentices, currently undertaking the two year NVQ Level 2 in Trowel Occupations course via Competence Matters. Liam has been with SLBC Limited since March 2021, starting as a bricklayer’s labourer before embarking on an adult apprenticeship in June 2022. During this time working as a labourer, Liam gained site experience which allowed him to take the 2-year route to becoming qualified. Without further ado let’s get into a day in the life of an apprentice bricklayer!

Q1) Describe your typical working day?

“I usually get up around 6:30am, getting ready to be picked up by the squaddie at 7am. We get to site and get changed in the drying room, putting on protective boots, our gloves, hi-vis (glasses when required of course) and hard hats. By 8am we usually have our first tub of mortar, and the day begins. Recently I’ve been working on houses on a site at Kilmarnock, building a lot of block corners and running in blockwork with the other apprentice in our squad. But that’s been a typical day on site for me over the past few weeks.”

Q2) What do you enjoy most about your role?

“Learning and the banter. I’ve had a few different jobs and this one is definitely the best in terms of getting the job done and working well as a team, whilst still having a really good laugh.”

Q3) A challenge you face on a day-to-day basis?

I would say that the biggest challenge of working on a site is that you’ve always got to be aware. Working in a high intensity environment where you have to constantly think about the health and safety of not just myself but loads of other people round about me. 

Q4) A piece of advice for anyone starting their career as an apprentice bricklayer?

“Stay alert and on the ball as every day on site is different, but really just be prepared to get stuck right in! That’s the best way.”

Q5) Your proudest moment so far?

“My proudest moment so far has got to be this big stone wall that myself and my squad worked on at Jackton. We built the stone wall right up from the trench block in the ground until it was complete. For me, it was really satisfying to see a project through from start to completion as this was my first time building a wall of that size with my squad from start to finish.”

We’ve added some pictures of this wall, because we also think it’s definitely something Liam should be proud of!

And there you have it! A Day in the Life of Liam McHugh! We want to thank Liam for taking the time to talk about his apprenticeship with us, and hope you will join us in wishing him all the best for his future in bricklaying. You can read more about what a bricklaying apprentice does here and what qualifications you need to become a bricklayer here if you are thinking about starting your career in construction.