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Lead roofer

Lead sheeter, lead sheeting worker, lead roofing operative, leading roofer

A lead roofer is responsible for working on a variety of buildings – from housing to listed structures, churches and cathedrals. This can involve inspecting, removing, or repairing existing lead sheeting or installing new sheeting.

Average salary*




How to become a lead roofer

There are several routes to becoming a lead roofer. You could complete a college course, an apprenticeship, on-the-job training, or apply to an employer directly. 

You should explore these routes to find out which is the right one for you. Although some of these options have certain qualification requirements, many employers are more interested in people who are enthusiastic, willing to learn and can follow instructions.

You may need a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card to work on a construction site.

College/training provider

You could study a roofing course with a local college or training provider, such as a Level 2 Diploma in Roofing Occupations and then specialise in lead work. 

You’ll generally need:


You could complete an intermediate apprenticeship in roofing and then specialise to become a lead roofer. 

You’ll need 2 -3 GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent to become an intermediate apprentice.

Apprenticeships are open to anyone over the age of 16. As an apprentice, you’ll be fully employed by your company and expected to work a minimum of 30 hours a week. Your time will be split between on-the-job experience and a college or training provider.


If you have some basic experience, or relevant roofing experience, you could apply directly to a construction company to gain onsite experience as a lead roofer.You might start out as an assistant to a more experienced lead roofer and progress as your abilities improve.

Work experience

Work experience is essential to gaining employment within the construction industry. You could gain this at school, or by working weekends and holidays with a company or relative who works as a lead roofer. Potential employers will always be pleased to see work experience listed on your CV.


Additional skills which may benefit anyone considering a job as a lead roofer include: 

  • Knowledge of buildings and construction
  • Good level of physical fitness
  • Good attention to detail
  • Patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • Ability to work alone, or with others
  • Be able to carry out basic tasks on computer or hand-held devices.

What does a lead roofer do?

  • Removing and carrying out repairs to broken lead sheeting
  • Fitting new lead roofs
  • Measuring and cutting materials to the correct size and shape
  • Welding, bossing and cladding
  • Cutting and fitting lead flashings around chimney stacks and adjoining walls
  • Sealing roof joints to make jobs watertight
  • Covering roofs using lead rolls
  • Working with other craftspeople, such as joiners and plumbers
  • Working at heights, using ladders, scaffolding and safety equipment like a hard hat and knee-pads
  • Adhering to health and safety guidelines
  • Carrying out repairs or restoration projects
  • Working on lead slates, lined gutters, church steeples, domes, turrets and spires
  • Most full time positions will be around 40 hours a week

How much could you earn as a lead roofer?

The expected salary for a lead roofer varies as you become more experienced.

  • Newly trained lead roofers can earn £17,000 - £20,000
  • Trained lead roofers with experience can earn £20,000 - £40,000*
  • Self-employed lead roofers set their own pay rates.

Hours and salary depend on location, employer and any overtime you may do.

* Salaries have been collected from multiple industry sources


Check out the latest lead roofer vacancies: 

As these are external websites, the number of vacancies related to your preferred role may vary. New opportunities will be posted as they come up.

Career path and progression

As a lead roofer, you could progress to become a team leader or site manager and earn a higher salary.

Progression Opportunities

Explore the progression opportunities below

  • Current role Lead roofer Specialising in lead sheeting work, including welding & fitting new grooves, fin...
    Read more
  • Current role Site manager Site managers organise work on building sites, making sure it’s completed safely...
    Read more
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