From education to employment

St Peter’s Primary School pupils build on their carpentry and brickwork skills at Barry College

Barry College’s Cardiff Construction Training Centre (CCTC) recently paid host to 70 Year Five children from St Peters RC Primary School.


The pupils came to the CCTC in Cardiff Bay to learn all about the construction industry and the opportunities that it offers. After being given a short introduction to the industry and a Health & Safety induction, the children had two sessions – one in brickwork and one in carpentry.

The brickwork session saw the St Peters pupils split into small groups, and were given the task of building a brick arch using recycled bricks, mortar and professional trowels. When their time was up, each group watched as their semi-circular arch support was removed to see if it would remain standing – and nearly all of them did!

In the carpentry task, the children visited one of the centre’s professional workshops where each pupil was able to build their own bird box using hammers, nails and surplus scrap wood.

The pupils had a fantastic day. Ten-year-old Maisie Spicer said: “The day has been really good. It has given a taster into construction to see if you want to do it in the future.”

Hannah Elford, also aged ten, added: “When I first got the letter about the day I thought it was just for boys, but now I’ve done it I realise it is for everyone and it’s really fun!”

More than 20 College staff were involved in the day including lecturers, technicians and other support staff. Neil Wickham, Section Head for Brickwork at CCTC, said: “This has been the third year most staff have been involved and we all look forward to the day – it’s manic, but really enjoyable and rewarding. Hopefully they will all have enjoyed it and some may even consider a career in construction.”

Barry College CCTC runs the summer visits for local primary schoolchildren with support from First Campus. A collaboration between higher and further education institutions, colleges and schools, in South East Wales, First Campus aims to provide a series of exciting and challenging activities for a wide cross section of pupils who are at key stages two, three and four.

Barry College’s Cardiff Construction Training Centre Manager Kevin Robinson said: “The day is a really rewarding experience for all involved – including the school pupils and the staff involved. The partnership with First Campus allows us to offer such a day to pupils of this age, which otherwise would not be viable without this funding.”

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