Barratt builds construction workshop for ex-forces students

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Students at Colchester Institute recently took part in a workshop led by a representative from leading developer Barratt Homes, about getting into the construction industry.

In a bid to support local communities and encourage a wider talent pool, the homebuilder teamed up with military charity Building Heroes – who provides a gateway for service leavers into construction – for the session.

As Barratt Homes offers many routes into the industry, including its popular Armed Forces Transition Programme, ex-Forces employee Leon Calder, who is now an Assistant Site Manager for the developer, shared his experiences of adapting to a new career outside of the Armed Forces and transitioning to working in the construction sector.

The military service leavers were able to learn more about how their skills can be utilised in a role in construction and Leon gave them advice on getting into the industry, as well as looking at their CVs and reviewing these with the students.

Leon said: “It was great to meet the students at Colchester Institute and work with Building Heroes to highlight the construction sector as a viable career option for many ex-Forces people.

“I hope that the students enjoyed the workshop and were able to take away some valuable advice from this.”

One of the students said: “The chat from Leon highlighted the routes into the available trades and management which I found interesting. More importantly it was nice to see an ex-soldier who had struggled find the beginnings of another successful career.”

Building Heroes is dedicated to service leavers, veterans and family members and provides training and employment support into a new career in construction by equipping trainees with a broad range of trade skills.

Those who attend the five-week intensive course will leave with a Level 1 Certificate in Construction Skills, a Level 1 Health and Safety Certificate and a CSCS card, which enables them to go straight into employment on a construction site.

One of the key elements of the Building Heroes offer is that the organisation will support learners throughout the course and help them to progress upon completion.

The charity is currently forging links with a range of companies and their subcontractors to offer full time work and work experience for learners that have taken part in the Building Heroes programme.

Courses are open to any military service leavers (within their last three months of service), veterans and family members. Visit the website for more information or email the team at

To find out more about career opportunities with Barratt Homes, visit

For more information on Barratt Homes’ developments in the area, please call the sales team on 0333 355 8488 or visit