Wood Knowledge: Riven Chestnut for Lath and Plaster Work

MD Tom Compton introduces a very special product used in traditional lath and plaster work.

Hand riven from split sweet chestnut rounds these plastering laths are a beautiful example of sustainable productive forestry management practice.

Usually made out in the woods near us in Haslemere under a tarp by the extremely hardy and highly skilled woodland workers who manage coppiced woodland and have the expertise to produce these specialist product.

The hand riven Chestnut laths are traditional woodland products, primarily used for traditional lime plastering of ceilings and walls in the restoration of period and heritage properties (although there’s nothing to stop lath and plaster being used in a new build!).

Watch and enjoy 🙂


More about Hand Riven Chestnut Laths

More on our blog about traditional Lath for lath and plaster

See current riven Chestnut Lath stock

Watch more English Woodlands Timber videos on YouTube


Wood Knowledge: What’s so special about Oak wood?

We asked Tom ‘what’s so special about Oak wood anyway?’ Here’s what he said…


The very word ‘Oak’ speaks to us of strength and durability, both as a tree and as a timber.

As Tom says, Oak wood is has been an instrument in our collective national culture. It has literally enabled the trade and travel that built and defended an empire.

The ability to transport people and goods on both land and sea meant that over centuries, continents were crossed, a world was discovered, and with that of course, more plants and timbers too. (more…)

Ash versus Elm

Elm and Ash, both big broadleaved trees that produce big woodgrain in boards.

ash wood solid floor and scottish elm dinig table made for our stand at decorexThis picture shows an English Ash bespoke wood floor and wide Scottish Elm dining table made by Simon Thomas Pirie furniture makers for our HIllgrove Timber stand at Decorex 2021.

One of these beautiful timbers is robust and tough and one is too sweet and gentle for it’s own good. Guess which is which?


Wood Knowledge: An Introduction to Ash

A forester’s story of Ash, the tree and the timber, as the most important species in our native woodland canopy.

Recognised by foresters throughout Europe as the Venus of the Woods but threatened with a disease that might erase it from our landscape, Ash is holding it’s own… for now.

In this video Tom, our MD and chartered forest manager at English Woodlands Forestry, gives us the background on Ash trees and the timber we’re so fond of.


Timber Certification: 100% or none

At English Woodlands Timber we have firm beliefs about responsible, sustainable timber sourcing.

It all starts with the trees.

sustinable timber tom measuing and analysing a parcel of english oak butts he has sourced for sawing

Our beliefs inform our choice to subscribe to chain-of-custody certification schemes that provide assurance of ‘legal and sustainable’ timber felling as part of formal forest management plans.

The chain-of-custody is key to the tracking and tracing of the tree and timber throughout the supply chain. (more…)

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