About Us

Women on the Tools (previously Women and Manual Trades) is a registered charity and a limited company. The organisation is governed by a board of trustees who are also directors of the limited company.

Our mission is to make women on the tools the norm, not the exception.

Our primary objective is to work until 50% of tradespeople are women.

In order to achieve this, we:

  • work with building trades and construction industry employers to help them recruit and retain many more tradeswomen as a response to the current serious skills shortage, in order to achieve a better gender balance between their employees working on the tools. Find out more here.
  • provide advice and guidance to teachers in schools and colleges; to employers in the construction and building trades; and through targeted campaigns designed to influence parents as well as policy-makers. Find out more here.
  • work with a range of partners to grow the National Network of Tradeswomen, so that women working on the tools around the UK can be in touch with each other, in touch with us, and in touch with people who want to engage with them. If you’re a UK tradeswoman who hasn’t yet joined our network, you can do so here.

Women on the Tools is a registered charity no. 1063652 and a company limited by guarantee, registration no. 2962569.


Women on the Tools member Sue Saunders, of Sue Saunders Decoration. Photo: Leo Hillier