Wood waste and reuse

Wood waste and reuse

Date Published

16 August 2022

Document Type



The Wood Recyclers Association (WRA) estimates that the UK currently generates in the order of 4.5 million tonnes of wood-waste per year; of this the construction and demolition sectors contribute about 1.0-1.1 million tonnes each per year, and therefore accounts for approximately 25% of the total.

Post service-life, there are various routes available for wood-based construction products, although much will depend on the physical condition of the material and the extent to which it has been treated. The main options are outlined below.

Key Information

Wood in landfill may release sequestered carbon, or methane which could potentially be used as an energy source.

Re-use should be seen as the preferred post-service life route for wood.

Re-use saves resources, reduces waste and secures the sequestered carbon in the wood for another service life.

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Case studies

Holly Barn, a new house near Reedham at the edge of the Norfolk Broads, was built on the site of a derelict timber barn. The timberclad exterior relates to the local vernacular of windmills and boat-houses.

The Woodland Trust is a charity devoted to the conservation of the UK’s woodland. Its new headquarters in Grantham, by Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, aims to communicate the mission and values of the Trust and, in practical terms, to accommodate 200 workstations in open plan office space.