Last edited 22 Jan 2021

New construction pay index reveals earnings winners and losers across England and Wales

The nation’s first ever construction pay trends index* has been launched to reveal that Wales has seen the biggest (5.3%) year-on-year increase in earnings amongst self-employed tradesman – compared to just a 1.8% uplift nationally across England.

The new ‘Construction Pay Trends’ index which can be accessed at has been developed by construction’s leading professional workplace audit and contract solutions provider, Hudson Contract, and harnesses payroll data from over 2,000 building firms across England and Wales.

The interactive tool reveals weekly pay differences by region, age and sub sectors such as bricklaying and joinery through to roofing and surfacing contractors. Providing tradesman, building apprentices and other industry analysts with a unique insight into pay levels, it also reveals the impact weather, location and economic factors have on earning potential.

The biggest drop in average weekly pay in the building industry was experienced in the North East which saw a 2.1% decrease in earnings year-to-date in 2016 compared to 2015. It was closely followed by a 0.4% decrease in London, with the regional trends illustrated in the following top 10:

  1. Wales (+5.3%)
  2. Yorkshire & The Humber (+4.2%)
  3. East of England (+1.8%)
  4. North West (+1.7%)
  5. East Midlands (+1.7%)
  6. West Midlands (+1.5%)
  7. South East (+1.3%)
  8. South West (+1.1%)
  9. London (-0.4%)
  10. North East (-2.1%)

Across all construction trades, the highest increase in earnings year-on-year for sub-contractors was within the Roofing industry which experienced 6.1% growth, followed by 4.8% in Plastering and 4.2% in Scaffolding.

Those working in the Equipment and Operator Hire industry witnessed a surprising 4.1% average drop in earnings year-to-date in 2016 compared to 2015. This was followed by a notable yearly pay decrease of 1% in Bricklaying and only a 1.1% average increase in earnings for Civil Engineering tradesmen.

Ian Anfield, Managing Director at Hudson Contract, said: “We’ve developed the Construction Pay Trends index to provide the most comprehensive insight into pay levels across the industry. It has revealed some fascinating trends on both a national and regional level, with tradesman in Wales experiencing the sharpest annual growth in earnings.

“The index will update monthly to reveal the latest pay trends - providing the perfect online career resource for building apprentices through to industry analysts assessing the ongoing health of the construction sector.”

To access Hudson Contract’s Construction Pay Trends index, please visit:

For further media information on Hudson Contract, please contact: Emma Draffin ( [email protected] or Kathryn Burr ( [email protected] on 0113 389 9770.

  • 2016 is year-to-date data

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