The Structural Timber Association (STA), which will be launched at Timber Expo in September, will widen its remit to other timber building systems such as SIPs, glulam and cross-laminated timber.

UKTFA chairman Lawrence Young told TTJ that more and more of the association’s members were already active in areas outside of timber frame, and they were increasingly called on to provide hybrid timber solutions. It was time now for the association to move on, he said.

“The UKTFA has been in existence for 10 years and during that time we have grown the association and the market. What the clients want has changed and they are looking more for solutions in timber. It’s a lot different from where we came from,” Mr Young said.

The announcement was made at the UKTFA’s AGM in Manchester. Mr Young told members: “The timber frame industry is no longer defined simply by the supply of timber kits; it is driven by intelligent and integrated hybrid solutions.”

The assocition said the move was welcomed by the industry and had support from TRADA and other stakeholder bodies that have recognised the value in broadening the remit of the organisation.

“This rebrand comes as the timber industry undergoes change and is in response to that,” said TRADA chief executive Andrew Abbott.

“TRADA welcomes the move, is fully supportive and looks forward to developing closer links with the STA.”

UKTFA chief executive Andrew Carpenter said the STA would drive greater use of timber in construction, as well as further its work on health and safety, technical knowledge, education and customer service.

Some UKTFA members are members of other trade associations, some as many as five or six. Mr Young said post-Olympics he had been told timber’s lobbying was too fractured and that timber frame had put forward a weak case against competing construction methods.

“There are a lot of people representing timber and we felt we had the strong brand. We are not chasing other trade associations’ members and we are not looking to take over other trade associations,” he said.

Between now and the launch there would be a lot of debate and development on strategies and products, he added.

“We are very upbeat about it. We have got a lot of work to do to raise our stake.”