Forestry Commission logo

Buying Guide for Local Timber

It is perfectly possible to buy both locally grown soft and hardwoods here in the South East of England.


Local timber is appropriate for a huge variety of uses including flooring, furniture, window frames and indeed, constructing entire houses.

Choosing the right timber for the right job is essential for effective performance.  Buying local timber from a local supplier means you can see your timber at an early stage, discuss your exact needs with an expert and even visit the woodland or forest it has come from.

Although certification schemes such as Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) show the timber is sustainably managed, they do not show that it is sourced locally.  Usefully, when buying local timber, the source of the timber can be tracked through the chain of custody so you can check that it is locally sourced and sustainably managed.  Don't hesitate to ask where the timber comes from.

Using local timber:Douglas fir being manually felled

  • is good for wildlife
  • offers job opportunities
  • brings wealth to the region
  • improves woodlands for recreation.

Where can I buy local timber? (PDF 11 kb)
Where to buy materials? (PDF 26 kb)
Who can supply timber frames? (PDF 30 kb)
Who can erect the timber frame? (PDF 22 kb)

What timber shall I use? (PDF 11 KB) Measuring the random length of timber
A guide to types of wood timber and uses (PDF 15 kb)

Why insist on local timber? (PDF 16 kb)
How do I know the timber is local? (PDF 11 kb)
How can I use local timber? (PDF 13 kb)

Who else to contact (PDF 12 kb)
Useful contacts (PDF 11 kb)


More questions? See our Frequently Asked Questions (PFD 23 kb).

Last updated: 22nd September 2016