Recent DMR Roofing Academy graduate, Finlay H, shares his roofing apprenticeship story with us.
Name: Finlay H
Company: Pears Roofing
What did you do after leaving school before you started your apprenticeship?
When I left school I went to college to do a business course. I quickly realised that it wasn’t for me; I didn’t enjoy it – in fact, I couldn’t stand it! I only lasted two weeks. After college I got a job working in the warehouse at Argos so I could earn money. I was the guy who finds and brings your goods after you’ve paid for them. It was hard work and very stressful around Christmas time. Finally, in February 2017, I started my roofing apprenticeship with Pears and haven’t looked back.
Why did you choose to do roofing as opposed to other construction trades like bricklaying or joinery?
Funnily enough, it started with a trip to get my hair cut. I told my barber that I was looking for construction-related work and he said he had another client who managed a roofing company and would put a word in for me. You could say that I got into roofing because I shared the same barber as the owner of a roofing firm. I had an interview with Chris which went really well, and was offered an apprenticeship.
How was your time at DMR Roofing Academy in Wigan?
I got a lot out of the academy. Andy, my tutor, was always on my case, keeping me focused on the job at hand. I think that’s the best way to learn. We received training on things like felting, battoning, tiling, slating, leadwork as well as functional skills support in the classroom. I went to the academy four days per month, and would have to catch the train from Blackpool at 7:30am, then walk from Wigan station. I gained a lot of skills while I was there and I also made some friends who I’ve kept in touch with.
What did you enjoy most about your apprenticeship?
The people. I met a lot of new friends. I also enjoyed feeling like I was making progress as my skills improved.
How is your life different now compared to before you started the apprenticeship?
I’m a lot happier now. I was feeling a bit lost before the apprenticeship and wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do with myself. I’ve now got a career that I love and I value the routine and security that comes with it.
If you were able to change anything about the apprenticeship, what would it be?
Nothing – it was spot on! I have no complaints at all.
What are your goals now you’ve finished your apprenticeship?
The first thing I need to do is get my driving license. That will make things a lot easier. Other than that, I don’t have any specific goals right now other than to make a good career out of roofing.
What advice would you give to someone a few years younger than you who’s thinking about doing a roofing apprenticeship?
Go for it! Roofing is hard work and you’ll have to graft but it’s well worth it. And you’ll get a good tan in summer!
We also managed to catch up with Chris Pears, Finlay’s boss at Pears Roofing. He had this to say:
“We are delighted that Finlay has managed to complete his NVQ Level 2 in roof slating and tiling via DMR Training. Finlay has progressed well during his time with us and this is thanks not only to his supervisor but also to the help and support provided from the team at DMR during his time there.
The skills and knowledge gained throughout his training will now give Finlay a sound basis on which he can continue to develop and improve in becoming a very competent roof slater and tiler.
DMR have been very helpful and professional from the very first meeting through to completion of the NVQ qualification and I would have no hesitation in using them again.”