Media attention providing a silver lining within timber supply tension

Media attention providing a silver lining within timber supply tension

BLOG · BY TTF HEAD OF TECHNICAL AND TRADE NICK BOULTON · 6 August 2021

Timber has been getting plenty of attention in the media as of late thanks to current market tensions, which is helping raise the profile of our industry as a low-carbon solution to construction.

On Wednesday, our chief executive David Hopkins appeared on BBC news at 6pm in a story talking on timber supply in the UK. He even managed to do this despite being about 300km away taking a well-earned break in Devon – quite the impressive effort!

In truth though, the interview itself took place a fortnight ago in the Building Centre. The keen eyed among you will notice our incredible Conversations about Climate Change exhibition in the background, which I encourage you to visit before it closes in September.

While about an hour was spent talking with reporters, ultimately the story was condensed into about a three minute story and a 20 second soundbite – such is the nature of working with media. However the impact of such exposure can be very beneficial.

The 6pm news is watched by about 4 million people. This interview was also followed by an online article with the BBC, and we have had follow up queries from the Daily Mail, Telegraph, Sunday Times, Architects JournalSupply Management, and more.

The primary focus of this media attention has been on timber supply. But it has also allowed us to communicate with the broader public the role of timber as a low-carbon building material, and its importance to the future of UK net zero construction.

Strengthening public understanding is important, as is telling our shared story in the timber industry – which can be challenging. Our supply chain is incredibly diverse, with our many large businesses joined by thousands of SMEs working across a range of enterprises.

With cross-industry campaigns such as Wood CO2ts less, our work with the Confederation of Timber Industries on Net Zero Now, in the upcoming World of Wood festival for COP26, and in design competitions such as RSUDC21 we are building a compelling narrative.

As we move further into our merger with TRADA to form Timber Development UK we will be even better positioned to foster partnerships in the timber supply chain, and make the voice of the industry even more powerful in the UK.

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