HARD hats and hi-vis jackets are a familiar sight on new homes developments around the country.
But for award-winning developer Linden Homes, the wearer of one such uniform marks a first for the company.
At just 28, Natalie Armstrong is the company’s only female (graduate trainee) assistant site manager - proving that there are opportunities for the girls in what is perceived as a male dominated industry.
Looking for a new challenge when she and her RAF husband moved to Lincolnshire, designer Natalie swapped soft furnishings for a hard hat when she was offered a job with What House? Best Large House Builder of the Year, Linden Homes.
She said: “I did a degree in furniture design and produced some designs for John Lewis before moving to a company which specialised in bespoke furniture and interiors.
“After relocating to Lincolnshire I decided to move onto something which involved project management, and enrolled onto a part-time MSc in Construction Project Management at the University of Lincoln.”
Natalie - who is almost at the end of her studies with just a dissertation to go – has also gained some hands on experience thanks to work shadowing NHBC inspectors both locally and in London.
Based at the popular NHBC award-winning Orchid development in Oakham, Rutland, she said: “I can honestly say that I haven’t encountered any kind of prejudice from my male counterparts, many of whom have many years’ experience of a trade before moving into a project management role.
“My strengths are my design background and my attention to detail, which are particularly helpful when it comes to my responsibilities relating to the second half of the build programme – involving the tiling, painting etc. I have laid a couple of bricks though!”
And when it comes to keeping the chaps on site in check? “My husband says I’m naturally bossy,” said Natalie, “so I don’t really have a problem in telling them what to do!”
Linden Homes’ production manager Don Burley said: “It’s a breath of fresh air to have Natalie on board. She is a very dedicated and talented member of the team, keen and quick to learn. As a company we are delighted to demonstrate that there are opportunities for both men and women within the construction industry.”
Earlier this year, Orchid site manager Paul Mott won an NHBC Pride in the Job award for the quality standard of the development.
|Linden Homes’ (graduate trainee) assistant site manager
Natalie Armstrong – the region’s only female in the role
- carving out a career in construction.
For further press information please contact Cetti Long at Media Matters on 01733 371363 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
07 January 2013
All images are used for illustrative purposes only and are representative only. They may not be the same as the actual home you purchase and the specification may differ. Images may be of a slightly different model of home and may include optional upgrades and extras which involve additional cost. Individual features such as windows, brick, carpets, paint and other material colours may vary and also the specification of fittings may vary. Any furnishings and furniture are not included in any sale. Please check with our sales representatives for details of the exact specifications available at the development(s) for each type of home and the associated prices.