Beth Thompson Pixlr

A Leicestershire woman has been successful in passing the UK’s first ever Foundation Degree in Demolition Management.

Beth Thompson has worked for AR Demolition since September 2010, starting her career as an office clerk before progressing to a management role. 

AR Demolition was set up by Beth’s uncle Andrew Thompson and his cousin Richard Dolman in 2007.

Beth freely admits that academic education was not her forte when she was younger but has no regrets over the path she has chosen.

“I’d do better at school if I went back now,” she said, “but I just didn’t enjoy it at the time. I was more of a hands-on learner, into machinery and technology.

“But I’m 10 years into a career that I love and I’ve got a good job with a great company.”

To help address the skills gap in the construction industry, Richard Dolman and the Institute of Demolition Engineers have been instrumental in setting up the new Foundation Degree which Beth has been studying for the past two years at the University of Wolverhampton.

Beth believes her back to front education journey is proving to have been a good route to go down: “It’s hands on experience and skills, not just education and theory. There are great careers out there no matter what your qualifications. And you can always study later, like I’m doing now.”

Richard said: “When Beth started with us she was keen to watch and listen, keeping her eyes and ears open while being willing to get involved.

“More recently she’s been involved in quite a few of our more high profile jobs, both from the office but actually on site as well – planning pre-demolition, coordinating all necessary activities before the operations commence and helping seeing the job through on site.

“Her gender is irrelevant. I’ve believed for a while that our industry needs to encompass a range of personality types to make it relevant, progressive and innovative – all that matters is that the person is competent, willing to learn and can bring ideas to the table.

“And as she continues to learn, she grows in confidence for taking on new qualifications.

“So our investment in talent is being rewarded. We’re playing our part in developing the next generation of construction professionals and we’re proud to be doing so.”

Susie Haywood
Article by Susie Haywood
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