Celebrating British Grown Timber with Wood School


Gaze Burvill and the Wood School at Sylva Foundation recently partnered on a project to produce a small batch of oak trays. Designed by Gaze Burvill, the trays were made by students at the Wood School using Grown in Britain certified oak, meaning it came from woodlands which are being maintained for future generations of sustainable healthy supply.

The project was born out of our shared values and aspirations for sustainability and celebrating Grown in Britain wood. The Gaze Burvill design team worked on initial design concepts for the tray, from which the prototypes were developed to refine details of the design and production. The brief for the project determined that the tray needed to be compatible with the development of batch production skills in the students at the Wood School, as the first live project on their Professional Course.

The design team at Gaze Burvill finalised production drawings that were presented to the students. The Wood School then sourced Grown in Britain certified oak for the project, which was then converted into manageable components, and 24 pieces (2 per student) were batch-produced. The Wood School students then used a portable laser engraver to engrave each piece with a unique logo, and the items were then delivered to Gaze Burvill. The trays were then sent to Gaze Burvill shareholders as a Christmas gift, with one tray also being donated to The Furniture Makers Company’s Christmas Charity Auction.

The project was a great learning and development opportunity for the students at the Wood School who were able to produce small batches, allowing them to repeat many practical tasks, which is the best way to learn craft skills.

Joseph Bray, Head of Wood School said: “We are delighted to again be working in collaboration with Gaze Burvill to highlight the value of home-grown timber. This year, Wood School students made a batch of 24 serving trays using Grown in Britain certified oak from specialist suppliers English Woodlands Timber. The unique design allowed them to experience new techniques and test their skills, particularly in the forming and shaping of the handle detail. We are delighted that through real commercial projects our students, the craftspeople of the future, can develop practical skills to help them move into employment.”


About Wood School

The Wood School bridges the gap between education and the wood industry, providing an innovative approach to design and skilled craft in home-grown timber. The collaboration between Gaze Burvill and Sylva Wood School was a perfect fit due to our shared values and aspirations around sustainability, innovation, and excellence.

The Wood School provides an inspiring and accessible opportunity to experience working with home-grown timber, highlighting the importance of using home-grown timber and reviving Britain’s wood culture. By collaborating with educational institutions, non-profit organisations, and commercial partners, the Wood School is inspiring and supporting the next generation of designers and makers in wood.


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