Oak Framed Houses
Traditional and modern timber and Douglas Fir framed houses. We handcraft all structures in our Bristol workshop for projects nationwide.
“Paul manufactured a set of large oak A frames for our barn conversion in Shropshire . The quality of the timber and his workmanship were first class ; the frames remained exposed in the finished build and are still the best feature of the whole construction.”
”On meeting Paul, the first thing I noticed was his passion for his craft. His knowledge of wood especially oak and Douglas fir reassured me that my oak frame building would be in good hands.
Paul and his team of specialist carpenters (all of whom had extra qualifications) were a bright and happy band who enjoyed their work and were interesting company at the end of each week, when we would gather round the fire-pit and swap stories over a few beers. The house has been admired by everyone and I have enjoyed being its occupant.”
John (from Guernsey)
“Paul Garland manufactured and erected our oak garden room frame. The work was carried out to a very high standard, on time and we are really pleased with the outcome. We would have no hesitation in using Paul’s services again”
Wendy & Chris, Warwickshire
Oak framed outbuildings are made to your exact measurements.
We worked with Paul in 2011, when he supplied and built our wonderful oak and douglas fir-framed structure in the woodland at Arnos Vale Cemetery, which we named the Underwood Centre. Its design and construction are of a very high quality – Paul is extremely knowledgeable and skilled, great to work with and to learn from. We quickly realised its potential, and it has since served our community in so many ways: as an outdoor learning and meeting resource for children and adults, a workshop for our volunteers, a shelter and play space for new and regular visitors, a theatre set, and most significantly for our revenue; as a beautiful, rustic wedding venue. It fits perfectly into the landscape and almost looks like it was always there. It was a very good investment for Arnos Vale Cemetery Trust and is still a fantastic asset for the site after 10 years of use.
Nick Bull, Estate Manager, Arnos Vale Cemetery Trust
“Paul and his team were a pleasure to work from the initial designof our three bay barn, through manufacture to delivery and erection, all stages went without a hitch. The workmanship was of the very highest standard and remains a focal point in its use as a community building”
Geraint …. SouthWales
The below balcony we designed and handcrafted came with extra living space and porch entrance underneath as a single story flat roofed extension. The canted section allows cars to turn and manoeuvre close to the structure.
The first project below was a modern semi-detached house converted from two to six bedrooms in 2012 using Douglas Fir. This project was based on a very low budget and maximised the potential space available. The original design had completely wasted the area above the eve and a huge loft space in the steep pitched roof was also completely overlooked in the original design. We squeezed another story into the roof space by lowering the 2nd story ceilings 120mm. The client was very pleased and the interior shots recently taken show the tremendous achievement he made as his own 2nd fix joiner and decorator.
“We have used Pauls services to transform our house in Bristol from a 2 bedroom chalet style property to a 6 bedroom 3 storey home. Whilst many of these properties have already been converted in a conventional way to 4 bedrooms, Paul was instrumental in realising our goal for better at a comparable cost. Paul was very easy to collaborate with at all stages of the project, punctual and highly knowledgeable. We asked for modifications as the project developed, due to our change of plans, Paul was able to adapt our design, some on site, and these were never made an issue, just solutions found. Paul clearly has a great passion for his work and really cares about a quality outcome. His skill and experience show. It is refreshing to find somebody like this after many poor experiences with tradesman. I would not hesitate to work with Paul again, I have and would highly recommend him to anyone considering a timber frame structure, and to those that haven’t considered it possible!”Tony
The second conversion shown is also a renovation, repair and upgrade project managed by the owner and self-builder.
The first deck shows local untreated Larch, installed 20 years ago, then replaced with oak in 2019. We estimate at least 30 years life in this latest oak decking replacement.
The last pictures show a deck built also using local Larch. This was for a ‘Badger Viewing Deck’ near a wildlife reserve, commissioned by a local wildlife trust.
Paul designed and constructed a decking balcony for us originally in 2018, providing an alternative way down into our back garden. The project involved construction of a frame for the decking, opening up the back of the house for a new back door, and steps down to the deck and from the deck to the garden. That frame was constructed in larch, and when it showed signs of wear (after 20 years on a north facing wall) we didn’t hesitate to call Paul back to carry out renovation work, in oak.
Paul is passionate about working with wood, from sustainable sources (the larch came from his own plantation). He also prefers traditional techniques, where appropriate. He worked closely with us at all stages of both projects, and was happy to tailor the design and work to our budget. The balcony has been the best improvement that we have made to our property, fitting beautifully into the back garden, and we would definitely recommend Paul to anyone looking for something a little bit more characterful than off-the-shelf.”Mike – Bristol
Delivery & Erection
We deliver and erect oak frames and structures using various lifting aids including a genie hoist. We design the scaffolding with contractors to ensure its usefulness throughout the build. The main hazards are in parts of the scaffolding either getting in the way or failing to give safe access where erectors and other trades people need to get to. Some smaller frames however can be delivered by van or pickup, whereas larger frames need a heavy lorry. We have a lot of experience of solving difficult access situations, including missing dangerous electricity and telephone cables.
These are a few examples of Oak framing at its simplest. Glazing systems have been developed which work well with Oak and Douglas Fir mortise and tenon framing. See ‘Glazing’ in the portfolio further down.
”Paul was involved with the project from the completion of the natural stone walls upon which the green oak frame was to sit. Working with us, he helped us tailor our original design into something that would work well for us. It was decided to make the frame free standing to save disturbing the house wall. Paul then created the frame offsite, delivered the parts to site (on the roof of his landrover) and then working with us (and our builder) we assembled and erected the frame, including us banging in some of the pegs, which made our day. Being a carpenter as a hobby, I examined the joints closely – they were very well made, with all sitting very snugly. 9 years later when we moved from the house it was as good as the day it was built. We were very pleased with Paul’s work – had many compliments about the design and build from friends and interestingly from many that viewed our house when for sale. We would be very happy to employ him again for our new house, if there is a need (haven’t found a house yet). Add oak extensions”
We can also supply furniture and joinery products from various workshops and makers using traditional techniques. These are compatible with the range of materials and tools needed for heavy structural carpentry. The following pictures are from our own archive when we ran furniture shops using local timber from our own sawmill.
Working on projects in Bristol and nationwide.
Genie hoists – an essential aid to assembling frames. Available on hire nearly everywhere.
”In 2008 we needed a timber framed 3 bay garage in keeping with a late medieval house. Paul designed and made such a sympathetic structure of wonderful quality, that in 2014 we had him back again to do a timber frame extension to our listed barn.
Difficult to keep it to 40 words! Wanted to mention your “hands on approach” and “attention to detail” but not enough space”
Using either separate sub frames into rebates or ‘face glazing’ with oak cover boards. We ensure our Structural Oak Frames have selected timbers throughout the entire structure. Where glazing may be affected we select matched sawn sections, partially or completely dry to ensure minimum shrinkage and movement on the glazed sections. We organise the design and procurement of matched quarter sawn Oak Cover Boards, sometimes selecting the boards at source to ensure the very best long term watertight glazing without shrinkage or cracks.
Haulage is a major factor in our off site production. We have 20 years’ experience ensuring frames get delivered to site, on time and safely. We also have experience in exporting structural frames abroad.
At Bristol Oak Craft we can source and supply many different bespoke products using local British and European hardwoods. In particular we can make and supply work tops, bespoke brace and ledger doors, window sills, oak cover boards for glazing etc. We also do heavy structural steps and stairs; see ‘Steps & Stairs’. We ensure steps and stair design will actually work when and where needed in oak frames for houses. We can also design, source and supply/fit bespoke flitch plates and hinges.
Timbers are stress graded and assessed prior to laying out and marking up. We use traditional techniques and many traditional tools. We use modern saws and drills to do the cutting. We always measure twice before cutting; then we offer up the major frames to check for fit before loading and delivery.
Roofs & Trusses
Restoration & Renovation
These photos show past and recent interiors of several glazed conservatory style oak extensions, the 2012 Conversion from two to six bedroom house, a three bay Douglas Fir Barn and an Oak Framed Kitchen Extension.
Drawing & Models
We make a series of sketches through three stages to arrive at accurate working drawings for an engineered frame. Below are some examples of first and second estimate sketches enabling that process. You can engage with us for one, two or three of these stages as a separate consultation and design contract. We also take on subcontracts using existing drawings from other designers.
Saw Milling & Timber
With over 20 years’ experience of saw milling and selecting/stress grading timbers we try to make sure all frames have the very best timbers in them. Some frames this matters more than others, some parts of the frame more than others. We also design frames to minimise the hazards of wood. All our timber is sustainably sourced.
Steps & Stairs
Whether for your property’s interiors or your garden, choose bespoke, hand crafted oak steps and stairs.
Designed and hand crafted in our workshop in Bristol, our oak framed outbuildings are made to your exact measurements.