Millbury Reach, Exminster

Key facts

 Mixture of homes and apartments, 26 of which are timber frame

  • Homes built four to five weeks quicker in comparison with masonry solution
  • Energy performance achieved through the homes’ envelope
  • Timber kit delivered reduced waste and lower risk

Type and size of project

Linden Homes’ Millbury Reach development is a 104-home project with a mixture of one and two bedroom apartments and three and four bedroom houses.

With a fast build time required for the timber frame apartments, Linden Homes’ vision was to deliver a community of homes that would be energy efficient and therefore cheaper to run for the eventual occupants. The homes, completed in phases, were in high demand, with many being sold off-plan. The contractor wanted to achieve a quick return on capital to enable further construction, and turned to Stewart Milne Timber Systems.

Description of project

Giving Linden Homes the ability to meet high demand quickly was crucial to the company’s needs. At the same time, the homes needed to be high quality and energy efficient. The use of timber frame was well-suited for all of these requirements.

To enhance the speed of build, Stewart Milne Timber Systems used an open panel timber system which was pre insulated in the Factory and during the manufacturing process fabricated 235 I-beam joists and floor deck into cassettes in its factory. This helped to streamline the build schedule and resulted in less waste and interruption on site.

The leading build and manufacturing consultant also used a fabric first approach to ensure the homes’ energy performance was achieved primarily through the building envelope. With timber frame being a sustainable and low carbon material, it integrated well with the overall vision of the project as an environmentally responsible development.

Stewart Milne Timber Systems also fitted Solitex Airguard, a high performance weather protection Membrane around the perimeter of floor cassettes which helped the buildings attain a general air tightness value of 6m³/hm². It also provided framing for Velux Windows which were an important part of the design.

Both these aspects of the homes helped to increase the overall energy efficiency of each home and added value to Linden Homes’ offering to its customers.

All of these measures had the added benefit of meaning the apartments would be an attractive prospect to the end-user and eliminated the need for costly bolt-on technology, keeping costs down in the process.

Finally, Stewart Milne Timber Systems also supplied and erected the timber kit, using a 25/35 mobile crane, which helped to further decrease the build time, cut down on construction waste, and improve health and safety on site.


Homes For Scotland Home Builders Federation National House-Building Council Royal Institute of British Architects Structural Timber Association Constructionline British Board of Agrement Wood Campus Build Off Site Building Research Establishment WOOD FOR GOOD

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