A Cornish carpenter building his dream home using timber washed ashore by a stricken cargo ship has been told by estate agents it could be worth £500,000 when finished.

Luke New joined hundreds of people in salvaging more than 3,500m3 of Swedish pine planking beached in Whitsand Bay, near Plymouth, after the Maltese-registered Kodima ran aground during gales in January. He spent the whole night rescuing wood and bought a load from a salvage company.

Mr New used the timber for the floors, window frames and kitchen work surfaces in the eco-friendly house at Ludgvan, west Cornwall. Its exterior walls are lime-rendered bales of straw, while roof tiles are made from recycled car tyres.

The timber was orginally destined for Libya.