Alison Brooks: taking a different view of timber.

Timber conference drives sustainable agenda

Published:  19 May, 2009

LONDON: In Touch with Timber, a one-day seminar aimed at the construction industry, ticked all the right boxes on the sustainablility agenda. The event, organised by TRADA, the timber research and development association, was held at the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre today. It was attended by over 300 architects, engineers, contractors, surveyors and housebuilders. Among the topics presented were the changing perceptions of timber structures; the economics of timber in a recession; inspirational architecture; the role of engineered timber in Europe; an introduction to Eurocode 5; the use of timber cladding in refurbishment and timber and thermal mass. Speakers included Alison Brooks of ABA, the first UK architect to win all three of the major awards in her field.

Ms Brooks was the recipient of the Stephen Lawrence Prize for the Wrap House, the Manser Medal for the Salt House and the Stirling Prize for Accordia in Cambridge. She presented her concepts and explained how she used various forms of timber to create sustainable buildings that do not compromise on form. 

Other speakers were Mark Sowter, formerly head of development for Tesco. He explained the reasons behind the superstores' drive towards sustainable construction. Patrick Hislop, senior consultant architect at TRADA Technology, set out the many applications for timber cladding and the importance of getting the right materials for different kinds of building.

"The formula for TRADA's In Touch with Timber conference is simple," said Andrew Abbott, TRADA's chief executive. "We want to provide inspiration ad information within a topical framework.

Patrick Hislop: forensic examination of good cladding practice.

"Since its inception five years ago, more than 1000 architects, engineers and specifiers, along with other construction industry prfessionals have atended this event. 

TRADA was also celebrating its 75th year. The organisation offers its members access to the latest information online on the website about regulations; wood literature; construction briefing sheets; point-of-sale literature and free technical advice.

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