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Licensed drainlayers lay and repair sewage and storm water pipes, and install and repair waste water treatment systems. Drainlaying projects can take place on large commercial construction sites, or in a small scale residential setting. As a highly hands-on trade, drainlaying requires a high level of fitness, safety consciousness and problem solving skills.  

The drainlaying trade has a huge shortage of skilled labour, driving demand for qualified tradespeople and heightening future salary potential. Additionally, due to the Christchurch rebuild and Auckland construction boom, employment prospects for drainlayers are likely to remain strong. 

An ATT drainlaying apprenticeship is structured over 2 years (4,000 hours) of on-the-job learning with your host business as well as options of block courses or distance learning (where applicable) via Open Polytechnic. On completion of the required unit standards you will achieve the New Zealand Certificate in Drainlaying Level 4. Once licensed, you can further your qualification to become a certified drainlayer. For more information on certificationship, click here

Matthew Freeman

Toyle Contract Services


ATT drainlaying apprentice Matthew Freeman, hosted by Toyle Contract Services, is half a year out from finishing his drain laying apprenticeship. Even though he has some early starts, Matthew loves the variety.“A day consists of waking early and going out into the elements. You work with many different products and large variations in size”.

Matthew also says its tough work, but at the end of that hard day’s work he is always satisfied.“Working outdoors to me is a real positive. You get to see so many places and landscapes, one day you’re on a farm, the next in the city.

“ATT has contributed by assigning a manager who always looks out for me and motivates me to always be better.”