Northern region’s top carpentry apprentice announced!

Carpentry apprentice Toby Chapman-Smith has been named the Northern Registered Master Builders Carters 2016 Apprentice of the Year.

The 27 year-old from Auckland’s North Shore trained through the Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO) and is employed by Court Construction.

Judges said Toby’s experience within the industry, his study as an architect, and enthusiasm for the trades, makes him a stand-out apprentice.

“Toby displayed complete comprehension of his project – from technical knowledge to supreme workmanship. He is able to approach and deal with issues.

“Toby is an outstanding, well trained builder with an excellent attitude. He is a credit to the industry and his employer.”

Toby was awarded a range of fantastic products and tools, $2,000 to spend at Carters, and a spot at an Outward Bound Course.

Second place in the regional competition was awarded to 26 year-old Rhys Baker from Auckland’s North Shore who is employed by Coast and Country Homes.

Third place was awarded to 21 year-old Sam Everson from Western Springs who is employed by Up Front Builders.

The results were announced at an awards evening on 26 August at Commerce Club of Auckland in Remuera.

Registered Master Builders Chief Executive David Kelly says the competition not only celebrates the quality of New Zealand’s carpentry apprentices, but also helps to promote the opportunities that an apprenticeship in the trades has to offer.

“The construction industry is going through an unprecedented period of growth. We need more people to join the trades across all levels. The Apprentice of the Year competition is a fantastic way to showcase our future industry leaders.

“We applaud the commitment and determination from all the apprentices, and we look forward to seeing even more from the finalists at the National competition in November.”

BCITO Chief Executive Warwick Quinn says the organisation is proud to support an event that showcases the high calibre of apprentices at a time when the industry needs them most.

“It has been fantastic to see the high level of skill displayed by all the apprentices. They have shown remarkable ability and passion for their craft, and are paving the way for more apprentices to follow,” he said.

“We are excited to see this continue into the National competition and wish all the finalists luck as they make their mark in the building and construction industry.”

Toby will now compete against the winners from the other nine regions at the National competition in Auckland.

Each finalist will undergo a 45-minute interview with the national judging panel. They will then compete in a practical carpentry challenge where each apprentice will be tasked with building a play house to be donated to local schools. The practical challenge will take place at The Cloud on 4 November and will be open to the public.

The winner of the Registered Master Builders Carters 2016 Apprentice of the Year will be announced at an awards dinner on 4 November.

Apprentices, employers and young people aspiring to be a part of the construction industry are encouraged to join the Facebook page.
Photos from the Northern event can be seen here.
For more information, visit

The Registered Master Builders Apprentice of the Year competition is made possible thanks to principal sponsor Carters, the Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO), and supporting sponsors the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) and APL through their Altherm, First and Vantage brands.