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Visit a construction site

Construction sites are busy and interesting places to work and you can learn a lot by seeing one in action. There are over 170 different roles in construction and the best way to learn about them is in person.

Along with work experience, a site visit can help you decide what construction job you're interested in and if a construction career is right for you.

Open Doors 2020

Open Doors 2019 had nearly 6,000 bookings across 290 sites in England, Scotland and Wales.

Only open to the public for one week a year, Open Doors sees hundreds of live construction sites welcome thousands of people behind the scenes to see what it's really like to work in construction.

Learn about the great range of jobs available in construction and tour some of the most exciting historical and modern sites across England, Scotland and Wales.

Open Doors returns from 16 - 21 March 2020. Register your interest!

Open Doors


Working in construction means manual labour

There are many different careers in construction. It's a massive industry with many roles and workplaces - you could be working outdoors a lot or you could be office based. Even if you are working on a "live" construction site this may include several locations, such as an office, a workshop and on-site

More Mythbusters

Arranging a site visit

Construction companies like to promote their latest projects, and many are happy to run site tours. Visits are open to people of all ages and you are encouraged to contact employers directly.

Often schools and colleges have students who want to apply for construction jobs, but don’t know where to start or what the industry is looking for. The National Skills Academy for Construction can provide this information. Schools and colleges can get involved in a National Skills Academy for Construction project by sending students on site visits, or through apprenticeships in construction and on-site training.

Top tips for arranging a site visit:

  • Find a Skills Academy near you: The National Skills Academy for Construction (NSAfC) works with construction companies at its training academies across England. NSAfC can help you to arrange a site visit, work experience and a meeting with construction workers. Find a Skills Academy near to you
  • Organise your own visit: As well as using one of the above programmes, you can approach construction companies directly to organise a site visit yourself. There are construction projects happening throughout towns and cities every day, and many sites will be happy to show you around if you ask.
  • Steps to take when arranging your visit:
  1. Find out the name of the construction company running the site you’d like to visit – you can usually find this on the fencing outside the site.
  2. Visit the company’s website to find its contact details. Make sure you know the department you need to contact – better yet, get the name of the specific person you need to contact if you can.
  3. Email the company contact with your request.

If they say yes…

Congratulations! When they agree, make sure you find out who you’ll be meeting on-site, where you can park and if there are any health and safety rules you should know about.

If they say no…

If they can’t take visitors, ask if they have someone who could come and speak to your group. You could also ask if they have any videos, pictures or brochures that could help you and your group understand what they do. 

What to mention in your email

If you are contacting construction companies directly to request a site visit, here are a few points to mention in your email:

  • The name of the project you want to visit
  • Why you want to visit this project
  • The size of the group and type, including their ages. Try to keep groups to 10 people or less
  • How long you'd like to spend at the site, and what you'd like to see
  • The times and dates you'd prefer to visit - make sure you let them know that you're flexible
  • The names of one or two contacts in your group the company can reply to
  • If you haven't heard back after a week, follow up your email with a phone call.
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