Module: Construction principles Unit: Introduction to timber cladding

Date Published

15 August 2022

Document Type



Timber cladding is popular with building owners and architects seeking to maximise timber’s unique visual appeal and environmental credentials. It is used for internal or external applications, although you must consider the durability of the timber when selecting material for external use.

Key Information

Timber cladding is popular for its aesthetic and environmental properties. However, there are many factors that must be considered in the design process. These include: type of cladding required, effects of moisture, wood species, sustainability, and surface protection.

With environmental concerns on the rise, the use of timber cladding is set to increase even further.

Case studies

Niall McLaughlin Architects has designed a new cafe at the end of the pier, commissioned in an RIBA competition. It is a simple timberframed glazed pavilion which gives all-round views to the sea; the timber structure is a repetitive form which resembles the skeleton of a beached whale or the ribs of a ship.

A new Maggie’s Centre, designed by Wilkinson Eyre, has opened in the grounds of Churchill Hospital, Oxford. It is set in a small but protected copse of mature trees which screen it from the massive hospital building nearby.