Industry News

James Latham supports Bristol Community Project for park redevelopment

[Photo courtesy of James Latham and Accoya]

James Latham’s depot at Yate has supplied a community project with Accoya – the high performance, modified and long life wood – that has transformed an abandoned, overgrown area in Bristol into a thriving pocket park designed for storytelling.

The Accoya was used to create an eye-catching piece of sculpture in the form of a snaking bench which was designed by architecture students from UWE (University of the West of England) and was made by contemporary furniture makers Ooma Design of Corsham (

Through consultation with local residents in Bedminster, it was decided that sharing stories is a group activity that can be enjoyed by all ages and provide a platform for communication.

Dr Rachel Sara, Associate Professor in Architecture at UWE commented: “The team wanted to create a piece of sculpture, that when placed on site, transformed the area into a space tailored for storytelling.  The sculpture is expressed as a continuous curved bench containing and sheltering a focused story circle and the seating can accommodate small groups and individuals."

“It has been a really rewarding project and we are extremely grateful to James Latham at Yate for having supplied Accoya wood. Accoya is an extensively proven and high performance wood and because of the modification technique that is used, it is ideal for outdoor use and challenging applications.  I know both the students and the team at Ooma Design have been really impressed with it.”

Andy Duffin, Operations Director of Lathams Limited said: “By creating this park, the team has inspired the community to engage with and maintain a unique area of green space within the urban street scape of Bedminster which otherwise would have remained an overgrown, disused space that was being used to store building waste.  We were delighted to help and to see how Accoya had been used in such and imaginative and original application.”


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Timbmet MD Nigel Cox is the new BMBI Expert for timber and panel products

Timbmet Managing Director Nigel Cox has joined the Builders Merchant Building Index (BMBI) as the Expert for Timber and Panel Products. Featuring from Q1 2016 report, Mr Cox (in the picture on the left) will focus on timber and panel products market, explaining issues, trends, and new opportunities.

Launched in 2015 by MRA Marketing, under the aegis of the Builders’ Merchant Federation (BMF), the BMBI offers data from GFK’s General Builders’ Merchant Panel with input from national and regional builders’ merchants accounting for over 80% of industry sales. 

Nigel Cox commented: “We are pleased to join the BMBI as the Expert for our market. It’s a great initiative to raise awareness of our industry to a wide audience. BMBI provides a platform for Experts to educate, inform and explain their own markets and add perspective to overall trends and issues. I’m excited about the plans to develop BMBI and pleased that Timbmet is speaking exclusively for Timber and Panel Products.”

BMF Managing Director John Newcomb added: “It’s great to have Timbmet on board. Their support endorses the growing awareness and significance of BMBI to our industry. We’ve only just scratched the surface with our plans to develop understanding of our markets and leading brands outside the industry.” 

Timbmet is a leading national supplier and distributor of hardwood timber, engineered timber and panel products. Other BMBI Experts include: Knauf Insulation, Keylite, Hanson Cement, Keystone Lintels, Crystal Direct, IKO PLC and Alumasc Water Management Solutions.


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Timber Expo collects Industry leaders' opinions on structural timber market - video

'Timber Advisory Panel' 

Timber Expo, part of UK Construction Week, has released a video featuring some of the most influential UK Timber industry personalities' opinions on timber and construction developments.

The short film was shot during the latest Advisory Panel meeting organised by Timber Expo 2016 in April 2016.

The panel consisted of 14 industry leaders, including Oliver Novakovic, Technical and Innovation Director at Barratt Developments, Andrew Carpenter, Chief executive of the Structural Timber Association (STA) and David Hopkins, Director of the Timber Trade Federation.

Mr Carpenter said: “To ensure the continued growth of the structural timber sector, we need to focus on the speed of build and energy efficiency benefits that the product presents.”

Chair of the panel, Rupert Scott, Membership and Marketing Manager at TRADA added: “By expanding design catalogues and companies taking more responsibility for the design process, cost effective designs can be achieved.”

Highlights of the Advisory Panel meeting can be found here.

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US Senators propose bill to push research in timber construction

A bipartisan group of American Senators has presented a new bill to US Congress aimed to boost research and development of timber in construction.

In details, the so called 'Timber Innovation Act' would incentivise design and realisation of timber buildings above 85 feet in height or roughly seven or more stories across the United States. 

The bill would also create federal grants to support state, local, university and private sector education, outreach, research and development, including education and assistance for architects and builders that will accelerate the use of wood in tall buildings.

Finally the 'Timber Innovation Act' would implement a program of education and technical assistance for mass timber applications through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), state foresters and state extension directors.

The American Wood Council (AWC)American Forest Foundation (AFF)Binational Softwood Lumber Council (BSLC) and Southeastern Lumber Manufacturers Association (SLMA) have publicly expressed their support for the bill.

AWC President and CEO Robert Glowinski said: “Advancing the construction of tall wood buildings will help lower the cost of building construction and reduce reliance on fossil fuel-intensive materials. This in turn helps avoid production of greenhouse gases that would have otherwise been emitted during manufacture of alternative products. Tall wood building construction will also support jobs in areas of rural America that have yet to recover from the recession. Given the many national benefits that would occur as a result of bill’s passage, the United States has an opportunity to accelerate and lead in the adoption of tall wood buildings and significantly expand markets for wood products."


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BRE Research Director Ed Suttie heads to North Pole to raise funds for charity

The whole UK Timber Industry is following with interest Ed Sutties's trek to the North Pole using just skis, sledges and tents.

Scientist and Research Director at BRE (Building Research Establishment), Ed has joined a small team making the 230 km journey from 88° to 90° North to reach the official North Pole.

But it's not only the taste for adventure to guide him. In fact this enterprise is helping Ed to raise money for 4 key charities: Cancer Research UKRennie Grove House Hospice, Earthworks St Albans and UK Antarctic Heritage Trust.

"I am completely self-funding my trip and every penny of every donation that I receive is going straight to help these really worthy causes", Ed said some days before his departure.

"I have had a fantastic support from the timber industry. Thanks to your help I have been able to smash my original target of £30,000 for charity and uplift it to £45,000." 

Ed is delivering daily updates directly from his tent with situation reports, texts and images.

To follow his adventure and support the cause, visit and check Ed's Facebook page Ed2NorthPole/.


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