Elaine Wilson, Sales and Marketing Director at Oregon Timber Frame Ltd, reports an upturn in the number of major housebuilders who are now confirming to Oregon that several forward sites will be constructed in timber frame.
Currently timber frame construction accounts for around a quarter of the new homes built in the UK and engineered timber has been making steady progress in penetrating this market over several years. However Ms Wilson reports “a significant recent increase” in major house builders based in England who are now turning to timber frame across multiple sites.
“There’s no doubt we’ve encountered a change in attitude in the market and we’re finding that companies we’ve been working with, who have in effect been trialing timber frame, are now turned on to its benefits and are committing to it over several sites due for construction in 2015.
“I think there are a number of factors at work here. Firstly the regulatory drive towards sustainable, lower carbon housing; secondly the need for guaranteed speed and quality; thirdly the shortage of bricks and blocks; and finally the growing understanding that timber frame can be delivered in a cost-neutral way. It’s all adding up to a very positive picture in 2015.”
Oregon, which has factories in the Scottish Borders and in Burton-upon-Trent in the Midlands, has responded to the positive market with a recruitment drive. Tammy Yourston, HR Manager for Oregon, confirms: “We have recently launched a recruitment campaign and are looking to employ up to 25 additional operatives.”