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Welders work in a range of different sectors including construction, transport and logistics, utilities, engineering, aerospace, off-shore oil and defence. Depending on the requirements of the job, welders will work with metals and alloys, cutting and joining using a variety of welding techniques such Arc, MIG, TIG and Stick Welding. Similar job titles include Fabricator, MIG/TIG Welder, Coded Welder, Automotive Welder, Machine Shop Operator or Engineering Fitter.
Day-to-day tasks for Welders may include setting out the materials to be cut or joined following engineering instructions and drawings, inspecting and testing cuts and joins using precision measuring instruments as well as using general workshop tools and small machine equipment such as saws, drills, lathe & mills, including hand tools and hand power tools. Welders will also frequently use manual and computer-operated machinery for drilling, milling and cutting.
Next Phase regularly has opportunities for Welder Fabricators and MIG/TIG Welders working on armoured vehicles focusing on vehicle protection systems, seats and the installation of sub systems. Previous experience of working on automotive or military projects is highly advantageous for these welding jobs.
Skills Required for a Career in Welding
- NVQ Certification in Fabrication & Welding Engineering Level 2 and 3-
- City and Guilds trained
- Welding standards to BS4872-1: 1982 and BS9606-1
- Understanding of technical plans
- Ability to concentrate for long periods
- Reasonable maths and measuring skills
- self- motived, able to work as part of a team
Salary Levels and Career Progression
The starting salary for a career in welding is around £16,000 to £19,000 which can increase to around £35,000 for highly experienced welders. Due to the nature of the work and the need to be flexible with regard to location, many welders work on a self-employed contract basis for which the hourly rate is around £16. With experience and a good track record, welders may be promoted to a supervisory role or be a workshop manager.
Sunderland is a city in Tyne and Wear in the North East region of England. Major towns and cities within easy reach of Sunderland include Newcastle upon Tyne which is ten miles away, Durham, 12 miles away, Manchester and Edinburgh, both of which are approximately 100 miles away. Sunderland is a coastal city and port at the mouth of the River Wear and this location made it an ideal centre for shipbuilding. Shipbuilding and coalmining were the major employers in Sunderland until after WW2 when increased competition from overseas resulted in the last shipyard closing in 1988 and the last coal mine in 1994. Following the decline of these industries in the late 20th century, Sunderland grew into a commercial centre for the automotive industry science & technology and the service sector. The Nissan plant is the largest car manufacturing site in the UK and companies such as EE, Royal Mail and EDF have set up their contact centres in the area.
A major attraction in Sunderland is the National Glass Centre which depicts the history of glass production in the area from 7th century to the present day and also offers visitors the chance to have a go at blowing glass.
Famous people from Sunderland: Emeli Sandé, singer and Lauren Laverne, DJ and presenter