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Changing times Although the coming year may have its challenges, the timber industry continues to offer the chance to build better and more sustainably.


he past year has been a time of change for many, with Brexit still present in every other headline. What the timber industry needs most at this time is certainty – Government leadership that is strong and focused – so that we can plan for a sustainable future, however Brexit may ultimately impact our economy.

Despite the odds, the construction industry thrived throughout 2018, with continued healthy projections for 2019 – especially in the residential sector. Brexit has provoked change, but also provides new opportunities. As an industry, timber offers three key fundamentals, which it can offer in unison. These are: • a digital delivery platform (BIM) • off-site manufacturing (DfMA) • the use of green, sustainable technologies. This enables the timber industry to support the Government’s initiative for off-site construction in a way that no other form of construction material can.

Combustible materials and cross-laminated timber The main challenge in 2019 for both timber products and structural timber building systems is the UK Government’s ban on the use of combustible materials in residential buildings above 18m. We must embrace it and put in the work necessary to reassess how we design our buildings and how we product test for specific use in external walls. Above all, this is something that we must undergo collaboratively, with knowledge that must be shared throughout the industry. Never has it been so important that we unite as one voice. I am therefore pleased to advise that TRADA will be supporting the UK CLT hub led by Waugh Thistleton Architects, which aims to bring industry stakeholders together with the intention of collaborating and addressing key issues such as durability, fire and cost. As TRADA, we can create specific and robust technical publications fit for consumer guidance and confidence.

our deepest appreciation for the time and commitment he has shown during his reign as both Chief Executive and Director. We welcomed David Hopkins, Managing Director of the Timber Trade Federation (TTF), to the Board of Directors. David’s experience, talent and passion will undoubtedly strengthen TRADA’s position as the go-to centre of timber excellence for both research and technical guidance within the UK timber industry. We are excited to see how TRADA can work together with the TTF to expand on our University Engagement Programme. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Charlie Law, a long-standing Director on the TRADA Board, who has stepped up to the role of Vice-Chairman. His support will be essential as TRADA expands on its current offering both domestically and internationally.

Better Timber Buildings Another 2018 highlight for TRADA was our Better Timber Buildings conference, held at the Royal Geographical Society, London, in partnership with our service provider BM TRADA. With around 200 delegates and exhibitors, this well-attended event was our first since 2008 – and we will certainly be looking at doing the same again in 2019. An expanding community TRADA’s reach has experienced tremendous growth over the past year. Not only have we seen an increased number of publication sales to the US, Canada, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand, but TRADA staff have been requested at conferences around the world. In line with this, I am also delighted to share that we have seen an increase in our UK membership numbers – a reflection of the hard work put in by the TRADA team – which supports the growth we have witnessed of the UK timber industry as a whole. n

TRADA news Board changes In keeping with the theme of change, 2018 saw the departure of Andrew Abbott, who stepped down from his role as Director at TRADA. On behalf of the TRADA Board, we would like to express

Nick Milestone Chairman TRADA Timber 2019 Industry Yearbook

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Profile for BM TRADA

Timber 2019 Industry Yearbook  

The annual publication of the Timber Research and Development Association (TRADA) includes topical and technical features on all aspects of...

Timber 2019 Industry Yearbook  

The annual publication of the Timber Research and Development Association (TRADA) includes topical and technical features on all aspects of...

Profile for trada