Saturday, June 2nd, 2012

Geoff Noble, General Manager of the Australian Brick and Blocklaying Training Foundation (ABBTF) said the recent announcement by the Commonwealth Government to support young tradespeople in developing their own business makes good business sense. The intention of the grant is to give specific support to tradespeople, including bricklayers, to start their own business within two years of completing an apprenticeship.

The grants are to be applied to assist new business ventures with business skills training and mentoring support. Up to $5,000 will be available as a grant for 500 people in 2012 13 and 1,000 people each year from 2013 14. $19.4 million has been allocated over 4 years.

ABBTF recognises that many young and ambitious people complete their bricklaying qualification and are keen to keep learning and developing themselves through starting their own business soon after. “We have many success stories in bricklaying where young qualified bricklayers have very quickly moved to set up their own business”, Geoff said. They are usually the recipients of great mentoring and good networks, either through their own personal skills or they have had the benefit of strong family support or an encouraging and progressive employer. Some ultimately go on to pursue a rewarding career path in other parts of the building and construction industry, starting with running their own business. Others remain in the bricklaying business and are usually the ones quick to take on apprentices themselves.

Geoff said, “Tying the grant to the development of business skills and mentoring recognises the enormous importance of this area to success in business and it addresses the need to avoid the cost and discouragement of business failure in young lives.”

ABBTF supports the employment and training of approximately 2,000 apprentices and is keen to see them pursue opportunities to run their own business and employ apprentices. The Grant is also applicable to mature age apprentices who complete the apprenticeship and start their business within two years of the completion.
Geoff Noble, General Manager, ABBTF

Contact Profile

Australian Brick & Blocklaying Training Foundation Ltd

Background to Australian Brick & Blocklaying Training Foundation (ABBTF)
The ABBTF was established by manufacturers of clay brick and concrete masonry throughout Australia to ensure there is an adequate and competent bricklaying and blocklaying workforce. Its purpose is to support the demand for bricks and blocks as a construction material and improve the standing of bricklayers and blocklayers within the industry.

ABBTF apprenticeship programs to address the skill shortage in bricklaying are funded by a small levy on the sale of clay bricks and concrete masonry and a matching contribution from brick and block manufacturers. The levy represents $16 on the cost of an average Australian house and $40 for double brick construction, the prominent brick in Western Australia.

Geoff Noble from ABBTF is available for interview and con be contacted on 0418 388 774 or 03 9556 3033. In his absence, refer to Susan Johnson 03 9556 3036 Visit the industry stakeholder site: or the student’s site:

Sue Johnsen
P: 03 9556 3036
M: 0404 024 449


ABBTF, Bricklayers, Own Businesses, Mentoring, Business Skills, Qualified, Support



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