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Female scaffolder aims for a career offshore

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Female Scaffolder Vicky Welch
Vicky Welch at AIS Training

Vicky Welch is hoping to become the first UK female offshore scaffolder.

The Part 2 scaffolder from North Shields is currently working for Consice Scaffold Solutions on major projects in London like King’s Cross refurbishment, Canary Wharf’s Crossrail and the Pall Mall Deposit Building. Vicky is one of only six other qualified female scaffolders in the UK, she has now set her sights on an offshore career.

Female oil and gas workers are a rarity, with female scaffolders even scarcer, but Vicky is hoping to become both with the help of AIS Training.

Scaffolding skills are much in-demand offshore and, with more than seven years’ experience in the construction sector, Vicky is hopeful of securing a job. She has just passed all of her mandatory offshore training at AIS Training’s 20-acre-flagship training village in Newcastle, including combined BOSIET and MIST.

Vicky took to social media after passing her offshore training:

Vicky said: “I’ve always wanted to go offshore but to be honest the water aspect of the training scared me. I couldn’t bear of thought of being submerged underwater upside down. Now I’ve finally come to terms with this fear I’m determined to get all my certs. The idea of working offshore really appeals. As well as better pay rates, the lifestyle is perfect for me as I’m used to working away from home and I’m attracted by the strict health and safety regime.

“There are only six female scaffolders in UK construction so I doubt there are any working in the offshore oil and gas industry – I would be the first. This doesn’t bother me in the slightest as I’m used to working in a male environment. The banter is great and, once you prove yourself capable, men tend to treat you with respect.

“My dream is to become an advanced scaffolder and expand my skills, eventually going into teaching and counselling to help others.  For now, I really want to take on a new challenge in an offshore scaffolding role and AIS Training has been brilliant in helping me.

The instructors really know their stuff and the facilities are first-class. Even my biggest fear – the underwater survival training – was OK with AIS. The instructors ensure you’re fully briefed beforehand and know exactly what to expect. Whatever happens with my offshore career, I’ll certainly be coming back to AIS for all my training needs in the future.”

3 COMMENTS

  1. I should think so to you old grunter,i’m curently working with Vicky on Crossrail and she is as good as any man out there and as you say she just wants the chance to work offshore,dont worry the novelty will soon wear off and she will have to prove hereself just like all the others and she is more than capable of doing that

  2. that’s great and all, im all for females scaffolders, her wanting offshore is also great and I hope her all the best,im just frustrated that most of the scaffolders cant get a regular job, were always being paid off then taken back, basically treated like dirt and then along comes the first female scaffolder,which any company would snap her up (purely for publicity) which is hardly a fair sex environment! which feminists are always shouting about, when a female can walk into a steady slot whilst men who have worked offshore for decades cant get anything other than adhoc, give her a lovely little slot offshore just because shes a female, NOT ON HER SKILL SET AND EXP more for publicity which is totally unfair to all the rest of us who have worked in the industry for decades and never get anything other than adhoc or fixed term contracts,
    “oh look a female scaff give her a job offshore great publicity” I hear all the companies saying, just because she’s female never mind if she’s capable or not (im sure she is that I do not doubt).
    ,The industry isn’t fair I know and I hope all the best for everybody, just I know she will get a nice comfy slot within a year whilst the rest of us get paid off yet again.
    Then wonder why some people aren’t so friendly and think its them,not knowing that, that person has been with the company for a decade and still gets paid off whilst she gets a regular 2 and 2
    which in turn only brings division in the workforce not unity !!!!

    • I wish to have the previous message deleted, as I have read it back and I feel it is inappropriate for this women to read as she’s only trying to get ahead like the rest of us,

      she basically doesn’t need to read the grunts of an oldtimer,