The Women Installers Together Event was created by Hattie Hasan MBE, founder of Stopcocks Women Plumbers and Register of Tradeswomen. The Women Installers Together Event 2022 took place on 6th July in the Great Hall of the London Metropolitan University.
What is the Women Installers Together Event?
Hattie: The Women’s Installers Together Event is an annual event that we run to bring women installers from all over the country together.
We were approached in 2017 by a couple of companies who said they wanted to get more women involved in our industry. And I just thought, what a brilliant way of celebrating the women that have made it and getting the industry to see that we exist.
Why did you create the Women Installers Together Event?
Hattie: There is a big issue around isolation. If you introduce me to a tradesman, you can bet that he knows another tradesman. But, I’ve met so many women through running this event that have never met another tradeswoman.
When I started being a plumber, I worked for seventeen years and I never met another female plumber or electrician. That was what drove me to start finding them because I knew they had to be out there. I heard that they felt just as isolated as I did and we were dying to meet others.
Do you remember the first event?
Hattie: In the first event that we had in 2017, attendants were queueing around the block to get in. It made me feel like this event is really important and communities have been built. There’s nothing more that pleases tradeswomen than fun, food, inspiration, and tools- and we’ve got the lot!
What happened at the Women Installers Together Event 2022?
Hattie: At the event, I talked about something that a lot of women face: imposter syndrome. We feel like we shouldn’t be doing what we’re doing.
Then, we had a session called a roundtable session. There, we hear from attendees as to what their issues are and what’s important to them in this industry. From those bits of research that we can do during that time, we can take that away, and we can go and spend the rest of the year working on the things that come up.
Then, former RAF fast-jet fighter pilot Mandy Hickson came in. Every year, we have a speaker who’s not in our industry, but who is a woman that has battled boundaries and has gone over and above to make it in a world that she shouldn’t be in, according to society.
After that, we had a session called, ‘Five Minutes Of Fame’, where women get a chance to stand up and share their stories. That actually gives a lot of inspiration and strength to some other women, because they will probably relate to that. The women had a chance to go around and talk to the sponsors and see what they have. It was just a fun-packed day, really.
Why are events like these so important?
Hattie: I think women really need to have an outlet for themselves. A lot of women are the only ones on their site. If something happens, who do you talk to? So, I think there’s a lot of value in meeting another tradeswoman and just talking about your own experiences together.
A load of our sponsors have always said, “I’ve never been to an event like this,” because it’s not just about somebody coming in and lecturing them. That’s why we have roundtables. Because it’s a community. Because it’s about the people.