To celebrate International Women’s Day, we caught up with one of our scaffolders, Farren, to find out what it’s like to be one of only six female scaffolders in the UK.
“I decided to become a scaffolder because of my dad. He was a scaffolder, as was my uncle and cousin so I really wanted to follow in their footsteps. Back then it was unheard of to be a woman and a scaffolder, so it was a tough glass ceiling to break. A lot of people doubted me and thought I wouldn’t come this far but I knew it was something I really wanted to do.
It can be difficult being a woman in the construction industry, but it is becoming more common for women to join, so we are easing our way in slowly.
I would highly recommend being a scaffolder to any woman thinking about doing it. It’s hard work at first but once you know what you’re doing you get used to it and you’ll find your path.
There are three qualities I believe every scaffolder should have – strength, a positive mind-set and to not be afraid of working outside and at height (very important!). You’ve also got to enjoy getting your hands dirty.
I’ve been a scaffolder for three years now and I really enjoy it. I started as a labourer first working through my qualifications and on reflection, I have had the opportunity to work on some amazing projects that I never thought I would have the chance to do. Everyone I work with is lovely and treat me as their equal.
There is still a long way to go before there is equality within the industry but PHD is a great company to work for. They are an equal opportunities business and are consciously trying to promote how important the temporary access and construction sector is to women and young adults. I did my scaffolding course whilst working with PHD and they supported me throughout it all and still do to this day.”
Happy International Women’s Day! #IWD2019 #BalanceForBetter