Apprenticeship takes Finley to a job he loves in Linby

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“Sometimes it doesn’t even feel like work,” says Finley Wilkinson, who loves his job as an assistant site manager.

He gained the role at Bellway’s Sherwood Gate development in Linby after completing an apprenticeship with the housebuilder.

Finley, aged 22, from Nottingham, has never wanted to do anything other than work in construction since he was a little boy visiting projects his dad Lee Wilkinson – now construction director at Bellway East Midlands – was working on.

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“I remember it being exciting visiting the sites, everything looked so massive when I was a little kid,” said Finley.

Finley Wilkinson on site.Finley Wilkinson on site.
Finley Wilkinson on site.

“All my family have been in construction all their lives and I wanted to follow in their footsteps. I’ve always been a ‘hands-on’ person. I enjoy being out there getting things done.”

Finley began by doing a four-year joinery apprenticeship, which he started at the age of 16 in 2016. Then in 2020 he began NHBC training to become an assistant site manager at Bellway’s Sherwood Gate development in Linby, Nottinghamshire.

While there was not much Finley did not know about joinery at that stage, the training process allowed him to gain in-depth knowledge about the other trades that go to make up a construction site.

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It also covered all the other administrative responsibilities of site management that keep work on track, and ensure the regulations are adhered to and the site is safe.

Throughout the process, Bellway made sure there was always someone to help Finley gain the skills and expertise he needs.

Walking the site with the site manager is invaluable experience for a trainee, and doing this Finley was able to learn more about what the job involves and how to do it well.

“You spend time with the site manager, and you learn to see what’s right and what’s wrong and how to rectify things if there is a potential problem. The site managers I’ve been working with have been amazing.”

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He said Bellway is a company that people tend to stay with once they have joined, and he hopes to do the same. “It feels more like a family here, and everybody helps everyone out.”

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Finley also believes the quality of the training he has received is second to none.

“The NHBC is the best warranty provider there is, and I have had the best training possible,” he said. “Bellway has been awarded five star builder status for six years running and I am incredibly proud to work for them and be part of the team here.”

From here, he hopes to progress at Bellway working up to being a site manager, and from there a contracts manager.

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Finley explained he gets an enormous sense of pride from the work he does. “You can look at a muddy field and in four years you see something come up from the ground. And I feel very proud when the customers move in, it’s brilliant.”

He would recommend the apprenticeship route to anyone who is interested in working in the construction industry as he says it allows people to gain a lot of knowledge that will help as they progress.

“It’s a challenge, but I wouldn’t change it for the world,” he said.

To find out more about careers at Bellway, visit