Happy New Year 2014
Sales have been very strong and for the first time ever we have exceeded all targets, ending the year with over £7.8million of sales.
We currently have eighty six members of the Oakwrights team in full time employment, all beavering away, designing and building new homes for our clients all around the United Kingdom and beyond.
Once again in 2013 we invested in the overall Oakwrights team in order to keep the company at the forefront of the industry, gaining a number of valuable members to the team and supplying further training for others:
James Underwood has joined as our principal estimator for full building projects. James is carrying out full build estimates for Oakwrights direct building work and Oakwrights partner builders. With an original background in the building merchant industry and many years estimating on a freelance basis James brings a great depth of knowledge which our partners and customers will now be able to take advantage of.
Katie Archer has joined the Oakwrights Country Buildings team as Project Manager taking over from Kim Jack, who after being with Oakwrights for over seven years has moved back home with his family to South Africa. We wish Kim good luck with his new life and Katie good luck in her new role looking after the project management for OCB.
Following on from our first intake of apprentices gaining their qualifications four more enthusiastic young chaps are now taking the plunge to gain a formal qualification in oak framing. Well done to Ben Townsend and Mark Lane on their successful completion and good luck to Cain Ellis, Aaron Sandford, John Davies & Phil Moses as they make their way.
Luke Carter has started his HNC in construction at Gloucester College whilst several members of our design team - Tim Griffiths, Steve Laws and Carrie Mills – recently returned from a training programme in Germany enhancing their skills on our design software.
This investment in our team re-affirms one of the company’s founding beliefs – that investment in our employees is an investment into the company, which in turn is an investment made for all the good people that we design and construct homes and country buildings for.
In 2013 we built 51 oak frames for houses and 105 garage complexes; some of the garages being larger than an average house. A growing proportion of these homes are now utilising our WrightWall Natural encapsulation system and I am looking forward to writing the case studies for these projects and bringing you the actual heating costs of the houses to show how advantageous this system is. Take a closer look here at what this system offers and a wonderful little film with clients who just moved into their Oakwrights home last month:
Architectural Design has been strong over the last 12 months with the Oakwrights Architectural Design Team of Darren Blackwell, John Williams and Pete Tonks as busy as ever creating some fantastic concepts for us to build. Don’t forget that at least one and sometimes all three of these gentlemen will be at all the self-build shows that we attend this year and the opportunity will be there for free sessions with them – bring your plans along and pick their brains! Our first show of the year is the National Homebuilding & Renovating at the NEC Birmingham – Thu 27 – Sun 30 March – and all three of the above will be present on our ever popular Design Suite. Click on the show logo below and go to our diary page to claim free tickets and for more information on how to book a slot with one of the team to talk about your project in more detail:
2013 also saw Oakwrights erect some very impressive commercial buildings: the first ever Waitrose Farm Shop over in Hampshire, the iconic new building that will connect the old city to the new on the Old Market Hereford Development, and we also finished a wonderful pub / restaurant over in Fareham, Hampshire for the Fullers Brewer – Cams Mill - a beautiful recreation of the tidal mill that stood there 100 years ago. The pub opened a couple of weeks before Christmas and if you pop along to our Pinterest Page you can see a full gallery of how it all turned out:
And as we stride into 2014, we are pleased to announce that we have gained planning consent for our new show home on the Church Cottage site just up the road from our headquarters in Swainshill. This is a really exciting project where we can take all of the lessons learned on our original Show Home (The Woodhouse) and enhance them to give a more educational experience to our visitors. Currently we are back in planning for a full basement below the new Church Cottage to show how this forgotten space below the home can really be used to great advantage to enhance the living environment. We are looking forwards to using the very best materials and components to run alongside our oak frame and our WrightWall Natural (Wall & Roof) encapsulation system to achieve both a fantastic living space and a very healthy living environment. Keep an eye on our YouTube channel as the year progresses as we will be creating a regular video record on there to let you see exactly how the whole thing goes together.