New faces join Maryborough factory

In January, Downer welcomed the next generation of apprentices to its iconic Maryborough rail manufacturing facility.


Twelve full-time apprentices, two warehouse trainees and five school-based apprentices joined over 250 permanent employees at the Fraser Coast factory.

The recruits include apprentice electricians, fitters and turners, spray painters and coppersmiths, who are honing their skills delivering rollingstock manufacturing, overhaul, repair and refurbishment services for Queensland.

Lucy Williams is one of the fresh faces to swell the ranks in Maryborough, with the new intake bringing the total number of apprentices and trainees on site to 42.

The apprentice spray painter leads a busy life as a first-time mum to five-month-old Isabella, and fiancée to FIFO worker, Matt. While balancing work, study and family life can be a challenge, Lucy is excited to be working at Downer and learning new skills.

“For anyone looking to start an apprenticeship, I say dive on in,” Lucy said. “With a trade certificate, you will never be without a job anywhere in the world. For the young women out there, come on in. There are many women in trade industries these days – join us. 

“Don’t worry about feeling out of place or anything like that. Especially at Downer, we are one big family. Everyone is a Dad, Mum, sister and brother to each other around here. You’ll be well looked after and supported.”

She’s among good company in the traditionally male-dominated rail industry, with seven other women joining her as apprentices or trainees in 2021. 

For Lucy, working at Downer is more than just a job, it’s an opportunity to provide for her family and build a career.

“I am so grateful to Downer for giving me a chance,” she said. “To continue my apprenticeship has been a goal of mine for the past two years and now I am finally able to do that.”