Our Materials - Chestnut
Chestnut is the most durable coppiced wood you can use, it is even more hardy than oak. Not surprisingly it was a material used in piling for ports. The roof beams of the Houses of Parliament are reputedly made of chestnut rather than oak.
This wood is native to Italy and the Balkans. It was cultivated in Britain by the Romans. Its value was quickly prized. However, although there were 49,000 acres of chestnut coppice in England, by 1983 this had fallen to 2,000 acres. Again it is no wonder that chestnut is now a valuable material given its scarcity.
It is coppiced and like the hazel pole, poles are cut from the stool every12-18 years. Traditionally chestnut is used in thin cleft fencing, and more recently chestnut pale and wire fencing. Smaller stakes are used for pea sticks and flower stakes. We also use chestnut as a hardy material in our gazebos, trellis and furniture due to its great strength and longevity.