Gas Mains Layer

Job Description:

Gas mains layers install and maintain pipelines that supply homes and businesses with gas.

Job Category:
Energy & Utilities

What you will do:

In your day-to-day duties you may:

  • check technical drawings and plans to trace where you need to dig
  • dig holes by hand or use mechanical digging equipment
  • lay or repair pipes and mains systems
  • connect homes and businesses to the network
  • install and maintain gas pressure control equipment
  • respond to emergency gas escapes
  • fill in holes and repair pavements and gardens at the end of a job


You’ll need:

  • knowledge of building and construction
  • the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
  • knowledge of maths
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

As well as;

  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • the ability to work well with others (teamwork skills)
  • persistence and determination (ambition/drive)
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

Becoming a Gas Mains Layer typically doesn’t require specific subjects, but there are certain subjects and skills that can be beneficial for pursuing a career in this field. Gas Mains Layers are responsible for installing and maintaining gas distribution pipelines. Here are some subjects and skills that can be helpful:

  1. Mathematics: Strong math skills are essential for measurements, calculations related to pipeline installation, and ensuring safety standards are met.
  2. Science: A basic understanding of physics and chemistry can be beneficial, especially when working with gas properties and safety protocols.
  3. Design and Technology (D&T): D&T can provide practical skills related to construction, engineering, and using tools and machinery, which are relevant to gas mains installation.
  4. Geography: Geography can be useful for understanding terrain, land usage, and local geography, which can impact pipeline routing.
  5. English: Good communication skills, including reading and writing, are important for documenting work, reading plans, and communicating with team members and supervisors.

Post School

You can get into this job through:

  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly

You could get into this job through an intermediate apprenticeship as a gas industry network operative.

This will usually take 2 years to complete. You’ll do on-the-job training and spend time with a college or training provider.

Direct Application
You could apply directly to work as a trainee gas mains layer. Most employers will expect you to have school qualifications in English, maths and science or engineering.

Experience and qualifications in construction, roadworks, building services engineering or plumbing can be helpful.

You could also move into mains laying from working with another utility, like water.

Working Hours and Environment:

Your typical working hours could be variable.

Your working environment may be physically demanding and outdoors in all weathers.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career Path & Progression:

With experience, you could become a team leader or site supervisor.

With further training you could move into gas mains or wider utility engineering work, or roadworks and construction.