Over the years we have published many articles, particularly through our TRADA Yearbook, which provide a good, quick introduction to a wide range of topics.

Featured Publications

A short introduction to cross-laminated timber

Exova BM TRADA

The well-known environmental advantages of using timber as a construction material, coupled with the wider technical and performance benefits of products such as cross-laminated timber (CLT) and glued laminated timber (glulam), are enabling the construction industry to deliver innovative and cost effective timber buildings.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See these related TRADA publications for further information:
Cross-laminated timber: an introduction
Wood Information Sheet 2/3-61: Cross-laminated timber: introduction for specifiers
Wood Information Sheet 2/3-62: Cross-laminated timber: structural principles
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Avoiding construction fires and reducing risks

Martin Milner

Fires occur every day and some have devastating and fatal impacts to human life. Ensuring fire safety in the design of buildings is a significant part of the process from concept to completion of a project.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook
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Avoiding wind-induced risks for renewables on roofs

Roof-mounted solar thermal (ST) and photovoltaic (PV) systems must be designed and installed to withstand the maximum wind loads expected during their lifetime. This means that designers and specifiers of such systems need an understanding of the wind speeds expected at the site, and the applicable pressure coefficients, for both new build projects or where the systems are to be retrofitted to an existing roof.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

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Believing in better: a new benchmark for office buildings?

Exova BM TRADA

Designed as an educational facility for BSkyB, this striking winner of the Judges Special Award in the 2015 Wood Awards demonstrates how timber can also be used to enhance the office environment.

The Believe in Better Building, a new building for Sky on its Osterley campus, lives up to its name. It is the tallest commercial timber building in the UK and one of very few multi-storey timber offices in the world.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See this related TRADA publication for further information:
Believe in Better Building Case Study
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CE marking: a primer for the timber industry

Niresh Somlie

As of 1 July 2013, CE marking of construction products covered by harmonised European Standards (hENs) became mandatory in all EU Member States.

The EU Construction Products Regulation (No. 305/2011) (CPR) lays down the harmonised conditions for the sale and supply of construction products and is directly applicable into UK law. It is therefore essential that all parties in the construction products supply chain understand their legal obligations in order to comply.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See this related TRADA publication for further information:
WIS 2/3-56: CE marking: implications for timber products, November 2012, TRADA
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Choosing adhesives for on-site bonding

Dave Smedley and Donald Melrose

Moisture content, temperature, humidity and surface preparation are key to the quality of a bond. Adhesive products to be used on site need specific properties that are different from adhesives commonly used in factories, for the following reasons:
  • The quality of wood surfaces is not easy to control on site.
  • Bonding pressures and controlled temperatures are not easy to achieve on site.
  • Factory-produced bonded assemblies usually have bond line thicknesses of 0.5mm or lower, whereas the bond line thicknesses found in on-site bonding may be 1mm or even as high as 12mm.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook


See this related TRADA publications for further information:
TRADA Wood Information Sheet 2/3-31: Adhesives for structural use, 2014

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Developments in modified wood products

Dr Andy Pitman

Wood Information Sheet 2/3-63: Modified wood products is due for its third revision in five years. This high frequency of revision reflects the increasing range modified woods coming to market and the need to make specifiers aware of their properties and suitability for different end uses.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See this related TRADA publication for further information:
WIS 2/3-63: Modified wood products
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Doors: The open and shut case for careful specification

Matt Thompson

Doors perform many important functions beyond letting people enter and exit a building; they reduce vulnerability to many fundamental risks, including:
  • Fire
  • Security breaches
  • Unfair prevention of access
  • Loss of heat/cooling (energy inefficiency)
  • Noise
  • The weather, especially high winds and driving rain.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

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Evaluating wood plastic composite decking

Janet Sycamore

The price point for wood plastic composite (WPC) decking is relatively high, placing it at the upper end of the decking market alongside hardwoods. The appeal is ease of maintenance.

However, a number of cases of poor performance have been reported to the Timber Decking and Cladding Association (TDCA), although these appear to be limited to a particular type of 'cheaper' hollow form board. Installation errors were a feature in many cases, although product quality issues remain under question. Concern has also arisen about new deck boards being fitted over existing substructures which are often unsuitable for wood plastic composite.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See this related TRADA publication for further information:
Timber decking: the professionals' manual, Exova BM TRADA, 2006.


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Focus on flooring: Ty Unnos and Welsh timber

Tabitha Binding

The name Ty Unnos, which means 'a house in one night' owes its origins to the tradition of erecting a house overnight on vacant land and claiming it as a home. This was common practice in Wales until the end of the 19th Century.

Back in 2006, a feasibility study looked at the possibility of building sustainable, affordable energy efficient homes using home-grown Sitka spruce, the most readily available softwood resource in Wales.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See this related TRADA publication for further information:
WIS 2/3-67: Specifying British-grown timbers, 2013
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Glulam - connecting with future developments

Andrew Wylie, Graham Clarke and Jonathan Roynon

Glued laminated timber (glulam) beams and columns have been used for decades as an engineered timber product that allows designers to span further, carrying heavier loads while retaining all of the benefits of using wood in structures.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook
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How to specify stylish and safe circular staircases

Mark Milner

My favourite description of the process of designing a staircase is that it is 'a mathematical solution to the problem of moving safely from one floor level to the next' (coined by Kevin Jones, Technical Consultant for Archwood Limited t/a Richard Burbidge).

All stair users want to feel safe, but there's a growing awareness among homeowners of the elegance and beauty a 'feature' staircase can provide. And the most stylish of feature staircases, with its smooth flowing lines sweeping gracefully from one floor level to the next, is undoubtedly the bespoke circular staircase.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook
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Improving the home-grown timber supply chain

Dougal Driver

I am sure that I am not the only person who has visited the TRADA head office in the heart of the Chilterns' beech woods and thought: "If only I had a similar view from my office window".

Those beautiful beech woods remind me of the common purpose shared by my organisation, Grown in Britain, and TRADA: to raise awareness of the many benefits of working with wood. But the two organisations work in different ways to achieve these ends. In the case of Grown in Britain, as the name suggests, our particular focus is on home-grown timber and therefore supporting the nations country's woodlands and forests and our rural economy.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See this related TRADA publication for further information:
WIS 2/3-67: Specifying British-grown timbers

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In Touch with Timber - Issue 23

Our magazine, In Touch with Timber is sent out 3 times a year to our members and includes technical articles, industry news, our latest case study and much more.

Our latest issue announces the Winners of the 45th annual Wood Awards, details our planned activity for Ecobuild 2017, launches our bold new in-house training plan, and also has an in-depth case study.
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Introducing the National Structural Timber Specification

Adrian Young

The National Structural Timber Specification was launched in October 2015. Adrian Young explains how it can be used in practice.

The UK government's chief construction adviser, Peter Hansford, called it a 'milestone', but what exactly does the new National Structural Timber Specification (NSTS) mean for those at the coalface, the engineers tasked with using it?

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See also this related TRADA publication for further information:
National Structural Timber Specification
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Keeping the rain out: good site practice for timber frame buildings

Robin Lancashire

Research has demonstrated that leaving a party wall cavity clear allows it to act like a chimney, pulling warm air upwards towards a cold roof space, with colder air moving in behind it. This cycle of air movement affects the thermal performance of buildings that have party wall cavities, even though insulation is already present between studs (for acoustic performance). Changes to building regulations in recent years have aimed to reduce heat loss and energy use, resulting in many more timber frame party wall cavities being insulated.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See these related TRADA publications for more information:
Timber Frame Construction, Exova BM TRADA, 2011
Construction Briefings
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Making a statement with charred timber

Aron Searle

When an image of a novel timber product graces the front cover of House & Garden magazine's Trends supplement, you know something is afoot. The stunning image of glossy blackened timber, hinting at the material's Japanese roots sparked considerable interest among clients and designers of prestigious new projects, always keen to investigate the 'latest thing'. But charred timber is nothing new.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See these related TRADA publications for further information:
External Timber Cladding
WIS 1-50: Timber cladding for building refurbishment
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Pre-scheme design of timber

Adrian Young and James Norman

TRADA is dedicated to 'inspiring and informing best practice design, specification and use of wood in the built environment and related fields'. Ensuring that timber is considered as a serious contender at scheme stage is fundamental to realising TRADA’s goal 'for timber to be the natural first choice material for construction'.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook
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Seven reasons to consider SIPS

Lewis Taylor

Structural insulated panels (SIPs) are composite engineered products in a sandwich formation, where the 'bread' is typically sheets of orientated strand board (OSB), and the filling is a low-density, cellular foam insulating core. Bonded tightly together in controlled factory conditions forming a stressed-skin panel construction, the composite structure of these panels produces high-performance yet lightweight components with good loadbearing capabilities, suitable for use as walls and roofs for residential and commercial buildings.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See these related TRADA publications for more information:
WIS 2/3-68 Structural insulated panels (SIPs): introduction for specifiers, Exova BM TRADA, 2015.
WIS 2/3-69 Structural insulated panels (SIPs): structural principles and design, Exova BM TRADA, 2015.


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Sustainable timber gives the human touch

Dave Parker

Given a free choice, human beings prefer to live and work in buildings that feature visible and accessible timber. Timber's sensual qualities - its distinctive colours, surface textures and aromas - speak to something fundamental in the human psyche. Metal and concrete fail to resonate in the same way; only stone has something of the same appeal. This preference may be hardwired into our genes, the legacy of countless generations over the millennia who have turned to timber for shelter and warmth, and who learned how to recognise and exploit the diversity of physical and chemical properties available in the world's forests.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See this related publication by the same author for further information:
Sustainable timber design
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Taking timber beyond traditional boundaries

Dr Robert Hairstans

Timber is a natural, hygroscopic, anisotropic material that must be properly understood if it is to be used efficiently within the built environment. With good silvicultural practices timber can be sourced responsibly and converted (with relatively low energy requirements) to provide environmentally sound construction products. Combining timber construction components appropriately through holistic design, informed detailing and quality assured building practices will result in a highly energy efficient building fabric that provides user comfort.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See also this related publication by the same author:
Offsite and modern methods of timber construction
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Timber engineering and BIM: Better Information Management

Eoin McCooey

Building Information Modelling (BIM) and building with engineered timber, particularly cross-laminated timber, have seen the majority of their evolution occur in the last decade. Timber structures are reaching new heights every week and BIM is increasingly being adopted in the construction industry. While BIM has the potential to drastically improve the work flow and efficiency of design and engineering, it is also a fundamental part of the design process of solid timber buildings. 3D models are vital for the engineering, coordination and fabrication of factory manufactured timber components such as CLT.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook


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Timber legality plus

Mike Jeffree

The EU FLEGT VPA initiative is ultimately aimed at delivering legally assured timber and wood products to the European market, but, while EU buyers wait for that, supplier countries signed up to it say it's achieving far more besides. Mike Jeffree reports.

The EU Forest Law Enforcement Governance and Trade Voluntary Partnership Agreement initiative has had a mixed press in the UK and wider EU timber trade. And it's not due to its mouthful of a name, or acronym - FLEGT VPA.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See also this related publication:
WIS 2/3-58 Sustainable timber sourcing
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TRADA's University Engagement Programme - the next chapter...

Elizabeth Turner and Tim Belden

Over the past five years TRADA's University Engagement Programme has connected with thousands of students in a variety of ways. Providing guest lectures at universities are a good face-to-face way of connecting and we estimate that in the 71 lectures delivered we've reached around 2000 students or more - with not all of them sleeping through it!

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

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WPA campaigns for CPR compliance in the fire retardants sector

Gordon Ewbank

Fire protection is a critical safety issue under the Construction Products Regulations (CPR) and the emerging use of site-applied coatings as opposed to factory controlled impregnation of fire retardants is a significant challenge and concern for the timber industry.

Article from Timber 2016 Industry Yearbook

See this related TRADA publication for further information:
WIS 2/3-3 Flame retardant treatments for timber products
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Available documents in this series

Title

Date

Access

A short introduction to cross-laminated timber 2016 1
Achieving long-lasting timber fencing through specification 2015 1
Aiming high with glulam 2014 1
Appearances can be deceptive 2011 1
Are all roof battens the same 2013 1
Assessing structural timber elements 2015 1
Avoiding construction fires and reducing risks 2016 1
Avoiding wind-induced risks for renewables on roofs 2016 1
Back to school with fibonacci 2012 1
Be sure the wood is fit for purpose 2013 1
Believing in better: a new benchmark for office buildings? 2016 1
BIM - it's all change! 2014 1
Bishop Edward King Chapel 2014 1
Building the future - with cross-laminated timber 2014 1
Burning issues 2012 1
Case study of cladding at Stonebridge Hillside Hub, West London 2011 1
Case study: Crosslam and glulam house 2012 1
Case study: New breed of boathouse 2012 1
Case study: Olympic Velodrome 2012 1
CE marking: a primer for the timber industry 2016 1
Choosing adhesives for on-site bonding 2016 1
Classification of adhesives for structural use 2015 1
Cosy crosslam: the cladding conundrum 2015 1
Countdown to zero 2012 1
Cross-laminated residential towers 2014 1
Cut above the rest 2014 1
Decking: A builder's guide 2013 1
Developments in modified wood products 2016 1
Discoloration: prevention and cure 2012 1
Doors: The open and shut case for careful specification 2016 1
Durability trial of British softwoods attracts industry backing 2015 1
Durable timber decking 2015 1
Eliminating illegal timber 2012 1
Eurocode 5 and CE Marking 2013 1
Eurocode 5: a young engineer's perspective 2011 1
Eurocode 5: the supply chain perspective 2011 1
Evaluating the potential for lesser-used timber species 2015 1
Evaluating wood plastic composite decking 2016 1
Fastener capacity the easy way 2014 1
Field of dreams: 'If you build it they will come' 2015 1
Fire doors by numbers 2014 1
Fire doors: seeing the end game 2011 1
Fire test early to avoid last minute hold-up 2014 1
Fire-resisting doorsets: A builder's guide 2013 1
Focus on flooring: Ty Unnos and Welsh timber 2016 1
Form and function in window design 2011 1
From tiny acorns Cheshire Oaks has grown 2013 1
From waste to resource 2013 1
Gentle treatment stops the cracks 2015 1
Get a grip! 2014 1
Getting the right connection 2012 1
Glulam - connecting with future developments 2016 1
Glulam leads eco-store race 2011 1
Glulam revisited 2012 1
Green oak - back in the frame 2012 1
Grown in Britain 2014 1
Home-grown Cross-laminated timber - Pipe dream or realistic proposition 2013 1
How to design a flat roof 2014 1
How to design a pitched roof 2015 1
How to specify stylish and safe circular staircases 2016 1
Improving the home-grown timber supply chain 2016 1
In Touch with Timber - Issue 21 2016 1
In Touch with Timber - Issue 22 2016 1
In Touch with Timber - Issue 23 2017 1
Innovate to insulate 2013 1
Innovation celebration 2014 1
Inspiring the future: timber research and innovation 2015 1
Introducing the National Structural Timber Specification 2016 1
Investigating timber in historic buildings 2011 1
Joinery masterclass 2014 1
Just more red tape 2011 1
Keeping the rain out: good site practice for timber frame buildings 2016 1
Learning how timber delivers 2012 1
Lessons in history 2012 1
Levelling the playing field 2015 1
Limiting fire and smoke spread 2015 1
Long-lasting wood windows - a specification guide 2015 1
Low carbon: how does timber fit the bill 2011 1
Make the right connections 2014 1
Making a statement with charred timber 2016 1
Making waves with LUS 2010 1
New 'roadmap' for new homes 2014 1
New teeth for CE Marking of construction products 2013 1
One tonne living 2012 1
Overcladding: the case for timber 2010 1
Part A - falling behind 2011 1
Part L: Luke warm and watered down 2014 1
Passive fire protection 2012 1
Pre-scheme design of timber 2016 1
Preserving confidence in treated wood 2013 1
Research finds adhesive layer improves wood flooring performance 2014 1
Rising and going 2013 1
Safe on site 2012 1
Sculpting the future 2013 1
Seven reasons to consider SIPS 2016 1
Shared wisdom 2011 1
Solving the cladding conundrum 2013 1
Span Tables - a look back and forward 2015 1
Specifying wood floor products 2014 1
Students - our future 2012 1
Support for timber cladding 2014 1
Sustainable timber 2012 1
Sustainable timber gives the human touch 2016 1
Sustainable timber sourcing 2014 1
Taking timber beyond traditional boundaries 2016 1
The customer is king 2011 1
The Fire Safety Order - closing the knowledge gap 2015 1
The ins and outs of windows 2012 1
The Lyptus test 2012 1
The pragmatist 2012 1
The world's first PEFC certified housing project: Kingsgate House, London 2015 1
The zero-carbon challenge 2011 1
Thermal mass in light-weight domestic construction 2013 1
Thirst for knowledge 2013 1
Timber engineering and BIM: Better Information Management 2016 1
Timber Expo centrepiece 2011 1
Timber frame and fire 2011 1
Timber frame walls - sound performance 2011 1
Timber frame: low energy, high performance 2011 1
Timber frame: modern and truly sustainable 2011 1
Timber grows beyond green 2015 1
Timber legality plus 2016 1
Timber on our doorstep 2012 1
Timber steps up to green deal with cladding for solid masonry dwelling 2013 1
Timber suits flood situations 2014 1
Time called on 'vacuous' sustainability claims 2013 1
Time for timber 2014 1
Top ten tips for timber cladding 2015 1
TRADA funds research into underfloor heating test rig 2013 1
TRADA's University Engagement Programme - the next chapter... 2016 1
Turning the heat up on party walls 2010 1
Ty Unnos - a house in one night 2011 1
University Engagement Programme 2014 1
Using wood for solar shading 2013 1
Velocity in British timber 2015 1
Volumetric building: idea to realisation 2011 1
Warm to the touch 2012 1
What wood is that 2014 1
What's in a name 2011 1
Wood for Good Lifecycle Database 2015 1
Wood's use for solar shading 2012 1
WPA campaigns for CPR compliance in the fire retardants sector 2016 1
Zero-carbon Passivhaus is timber frame 2011 1