The ageing society has been attracting the attention of policy-makers in Australia and in many other countries. This paper considers the labour market for the traditional trades in Australia over the next 40 years and investigates whether the ageing society will pose a workforce problem. The broad conclusion is that the ageing society will significantly impact on the size of the potential trades workforce, but that this is unlikely to result in shortages. Rather, any shortage is more likely to occur if the trades lose their attractiveness relative to other occupations. Moreover, the age distribution of the trades workforce will remain largely unaltered.