Manufacturing from Sustainable Sources
Our Social Ethos
We are probably unique as a garden building manufacturer as we are part of a social enterprise that prides itself in not only supplying very high quality products but also has a strong track record in providing opportunities for training and apprenticeships so that our work has a much greater social impact.
Our Environmental Ethos
We seek to minimise our environmental impact by reducing transport use through batch delivery where possible, by utilising sustainably grown and UK / European sourced timber only from FSC sources, by utilising ecologically sensitive paints and wood preservatives as far as possible and by ensuring that we do not use products containing known hazardous materials.
As part of our environmental ethos, every effort is made to avoid using solvents such as white spirit, turpentine and glycols. All paint finishes are low *VOC in accordance with the EU value limit (0.30-7.99%)
*VOC – Volatile Organic Compound. When inhaled, VOCs can cause several health problems Due to this, it’s best to use products with low VOC’s whenever possible.
We use ecologically safe timber treatments on all above-ground timber and only utilise Tanalith for in-ground floor bearers. The ecologically safe timber treatment that we use is:
LifeTime® Wood Treatment which is supplied by Valhalla Wood Preservatives and has a long history of use in Canada but is now available in the UK. It is non-toxic and environmentally friendly. Independent laboratory testing confirms that LifeTime® Wood treatment creates no harmful residue in soil or water. The ingredients are a closely guarded family secret but they are known to consist of naturally occurring plant and mineral substances that penetrate the wood fibres to provide long-lasting protection.
Our timber is sourced from suppliers that comply with the new Forest Stewardship Council (FSC®) Certification Standard and is European grown wherever possible.
We plant an absolute minimum of 10 new trees for every shed or equivalent that we sell, ensuring that over time we will capture increasing amounts of atmospheric carbon and offset a major proportion of our carbon footprint.
The Willow Works
Beautiful Sheds are manufactured in our workshop based at the Willow Works. The Willow Works is situated on Old Trent Road in Beckingham, north Nottinghamshire and is the only surviving building of what was once a thriving industry in the Trent valley of willow working.
Many local people were employed both at the Willow Works and from home to help in the willow industry that involved manufacturing such items as baskets, fencing, chairs etc.
The Willow Works building was constructed in a style that is unknown elsewhere in Nottinghamshire and it is unlikely there is another similar building in the country and therefore it represents a crucial piece of the nation’s industrial heritage.
The Willow Works was built with windows only on the north side with no south side fenestration so that the sun’s heat would not overheat the inside of the building and lead to the cut willow drying out too quickly. Though the north facing windows still allowed enough light for working.
Beautiful Sheds’ parent company Crestra Ltd undertook the restoration of the Willow Works building in 2012, employing and training a number of local people in the process.
The restoration of the building was regarded as being of such importance that it was supported with funding through the Heritage Lottery Fund, WREN, Star Energy and many other organisations.
By continuing to manufacture timber products from the building, we are not only carrying on this heritage to some extent, but we are also providing income to support the building’s continued upkeep and preservation.
The building also provides a base for activities and promotion of the Beckingham Marshes that are an important habitat that has been developed and is managed by the RSPB.