What Does a Brick and Stone Mason Do?

Brick & Stone Masons (401A) prepare and lay bricks, concrete blocks, stone and other masonry units to construct, erect and repair structures such as walls, partitions, patios, arches, paving, fireplaces, smokestacks and chimneys. Their work also encompasses the laying of fire brick and other refractory materials used in the construction of industrial furnaces, retorts and boilers.




Learn about the business case for training apprentices in bricklaying

Job Related Skills, Interests and Values

  • reads and interprets drawings and blueprints and works by hand or with hand and power tools
  • measures accurately from an established starting point and uses plumb lines and a mason's level, as required 
  • knows the properties of various mortars and other bonding materials and applies the knowledge in different projects
  • spreads mortar over the base or previous layer, on one end of each brick to be laid, lays bricks in position and removes any excess mortar
  • uses hammers or chisels or masonry saws to cut and fit bricks
  • lines or relines furnaces, kilns, boilers and similar installations using refractory or acid-resistant bricks, concretes, plastics or other material
  • works well independently or with co-workers under a deadline to get the job done
  • experiments with various materials and methods to solve construction problems 

You may find additional information about Brick & Stone Mason and applicable standards at the Ontario College of Trades (OCOT) website - Construction sector link: www.collegeoftrades.ca/trades/training-standards1/construction.

To view the Essential Skills necessary for a Brick & Stone Mason (NOC code 7281), click:


What Does a Brick & Stone Mason Do?

A Brick & Stone Mason does similar work to a cement mason or a bricklayer.  Specialized Brick & Stone Masons could repair and restore heritage buildings and monuments. Some structures that a Brick & Stone Mason works on include chimneys, smokestacks, foundations, furnaces, kilns and forges.

Job -Related Skills, Interests and Values

  • preparing, mixing mortar
  • using and maintaining power and hand tools
  • cutting out and filling masonry joints in ashlar, rubble and brickwork
  • cutting out and indenting new stone pieces
  • repairing, replacing or resetting bricks, stone and terra cotta blocks
  • drilling, grouting and pinning fractured stones, resetting copings
  • performing washing, including mechanical and chemical cleaning of masonry surfaces
  • observing safety in accordance with government and company standards

What Preparation and Training Do You Need?

Brick & Stone Mason Mason is a voluntary certified trade in the construction sector, which means that it does not require a valid Certificate of Apprenticeship to work in the trade. However, apprenticeship training is recommended.

Grade 12 is usually required by employers and unions today, but grade 8 is currently the legal minimum to be apprenticed in this trade under the Ontario College of Trades Apprenticeship Act (2009). Please note that minimum entry requirements to this and other trades are currently under review by the Ontario College of Trades. Completion of a 6000 hour apprenticeship will include a combination of on-the-job and in-school training. Brick & Stone Mason skills are transferable to other masonry trades as well as landscaping.

What’s Your Future as a Brick & Stone Mason?

Brick & Stone Masons generally work full-time, often outdoors, sometimes on scaffolding inside protective enclosures. Bricklayers who work on construction projects may work on a project-to-project basis with some down-time. Some Brick & Stone Masons work as employees of contractors, or are self-employed as independent contractors. Brick & Stone Masons are often members of a construction union and work out of a union hiring hall. Some may specialize further in this trade and become qualified as a Refractory Mason. Examples of typical Brick & Stone Mason employers include:

  • exterior construction firms
  • residential building developers
  • building construction firms
  • primary steel producers
  • construction contractors
  • refractory companies

For additional information about this career, check out the Construction Sector Council website at:  www.CareersInConstruction.ca

Wage Rate

  • apprentices usually start at a wage rate less than  that of a journeyperson
  • this rate increases gradually as you gain competency and skill
  • fully qualified Brick & Stone Masons can earn on average anywhere from $23.00/hr to $28.00/hr or more, sometimes with employee benefits and opportunities for overtime

Ask Yourself: Is working as a Brick and Stone Mason for You?


Would you enjoy working in a job that requires physical stamina, routine lifting of heavy objects, sometimes outdoors in bad weather ?

Yes      No

Do you have a good eye for detail and colour, and do you enjoy performing tasks requiring precision?

Yes      No

Do you like working with numbers, and are you precise and accurate at it?

Yes      No

Do you enjoy working with your hands, and with tools and other mechanical equipment?

Yes      No

Are you the kind of person who takes great pride in doing a job ‘just right ‘?

Yes      No

Can you work independently or in a group to get a job done on deadline?

Yes      No

If you answered yes to most of these questions, a career as a Brick & Stone Mason may be for you!

You may want to explore other jobs that require similar interests and skills, such as:

  • Tilesetter
  • Carpenter
  • Plasterer
  • Concrete Finisher
  • Roofer
  • Industrial Woodworker

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