Physical event planned for 25th anniversary TTJ Awards

15 June 2021

It’s heartening to see signs of normal life resuming once again. Meeting up with others following the easing of pandemic restrictions has been a welcome relief after what has seemed like a long winter and springtime. I don’t know about you but it seemed like I had exhausted my narrow list of Covid-safe things to do.

The signs of an improving outlook has led us to be more confident with our plans for the TTJ Awards this year.

After conducting some research, it seems there are many people in the trade who are looking forward to having physical meetings again in the coming months.

This year will be the 25th anniversary of the TTJ Awards and we really want to celebrate it. We’re delighted to report that a physical gathering for the TTJ Awards is being planned for September 17, with it being a ‘hybrid’ event – which means we will have live streaming to capture a wider virtual audience as well.

Voting started on May 10 and will continue until July 22. It’s timber buyers – the customers of the timber trade – that vote for their suppliers based on customer service and product quality. Typical voters include builders merchants, construction companies, joinery manufacturers, structural timber systems producers, specifiers, fencing contractors, furniture producers and other wood product manufacturers.

We’ve added a new voted category – Timber Garden Products Supplier of the Year – to recognise a massive sector in its own right. It’s a sector which has been booming over the past year.

Things are hotting up in the softwood supply sector, with continuing high demand leading to some shortages in specifications and rising prices. This follows a 2020 where UK softwood imports were higher than 2019 and 2018.

Demand in the repair and maintenance sector is especially strong, and, according to speakers at the Timber Trade Federation’s recent annual Softwood Conference (see page 24), wood consumption should remain at good levels over the coming two years.

But normal trading patterns have been disrupted by multiple factors – including the pandemic and Brexit.

The second half of 2020 saw an increase of more than 1 million m3 of softwood imports compared to H2 2019 and the turnaround in Q4 – up 47% – has been described as “remarkable”.

Elsewhere in this issue, we have a comprehensive update on the North American forest product sector, with input from the American Hardwood Export Council and American Softwoods.

UK imports of American hardwood suffered a 16% volume reverse in 2020 but rebounded strongly later in the year and positive indicators exist for this year.

Lastly, make sure to check out our annual Preservatives sector focus – it’s vitally important the whole supply chain pulls together to make sure the right treated products are specified for correct end use.