Home Explore Job Ideas Demolition Operative

Job Description

A demolition operative is responsible for the dismantling of derelict or old buildings and structures. The job consists of taking down structures in a coordinated and safe way and removing hazardous materials.  They will operate demolition plant machinery, hammer drills and cutting equipment and may also have to prepare the site prior to demolition, put up rails and safety screens and separate out re-usable building materials. 

Entry Requirements

You can get into this job through:


You could do a college course in Construction, which would teach you some of the skills and knowledge you need in this job.

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or fewer GCSEs at grades 3 to 1 (D to G), or equivalent, for a level 1 course
  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course

The following local colleges offer courses in Construction:

Or your local 6th form may offer a relevant course.


You may be able to start by doing an demolition operative intermediate apprenticeship.

If you're under 18, you could start by doing an intermediate construction plant operative apprenticeship, then move into demolition training once you reach 18.

You'll usually need some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship.

Click here to search for an apprenticeship.


You may be able to work as a site labourer, plant operator or construction tradesperson and take on-the-job training in demolition.

Direct Application

You could apply for jobs directly with demolition contractors if you have construction work experience. Some employers may ask for GCSEs in maths, English, and design and technology, or equivalent qualifications.

Career Tips

You’ll need a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card to work on most sites. 

You'll need to be over 18 years of age.

The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB)  have more information about demolition careers and training.

Career Path and Progression

With further training, you could specialise in a particular demolition method, like explosives. 

With experience you could progress into site supervision and management.

Related careers you may be interested in:

  • Scaffolder
  • Construction plant operator
  • Construction labourer
  • Steeplejack

Required Skills

  • Good fitness levels
  • an understanding of diagrams and instructions
  • good communication skills
  • the ability to work as a team
  • knowledge of public safety and security
  • the ability to use your initiative

Salary Range

£14,000 to £30,000

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