TIMBER Traders is on the aptly named Wood Street in semi-industrial Fremantle.
Huge corrugated iron sheds are crammed with slabs of native timbers in varying hues and states of dress – and they’re all sourced ethically.
“All our wood comes from timber that would otherwise get chopped up or burnt,” Timber Traders owner Terry Miskimmin says.
Giant tree trunks dominate the yard and sliced logs are ready to go in the kiln for drying.
Inside, tall slabs of wood stand to attention like sentries as they wait to be transformed into benchtops, bars, boardroom tables or even timber wash basins.
Pylons from old jetties are piled high, along with aged jarrah floorboards from demolition sites.
In the main workshop, some of the wood has already been turned into stunning pieces of furniture, showcasing the timber’s texture and natural grain.
A magnificent piece of marri is in the final stages of becoming a table for an artist.
He wanted the timber’s imperfections inlaid with blue epoxy resin to complement the colours of the ocean in one of his paintings.
Clearly it’s a work of love by cabinet maker Grant Pearce, who whips out a torch to show me the beautiful colour of the wood.
Most of the company’s wood is reclaimed from residential land clearing, road widening, blown-over trees, fence-line clearing and demolition of old buildings.
“All of these we cut, mill and dry to turn them into beautiful hardwood products,” Mr Miskimmin says.
That includes a 300-year-old marri cut down on a former industrial site on Stock Road.
“A tree lopper rang to say it’s too good to mulch,” Mr Pearce says.
Mr Miskimmin has been running Timber Traders for 40 years and his passion for trees and the environment extends well beyond furniture making.
The company plants 750 trees a month in the Wheatbelt via the Carbon Neutral organisation, and is also involved with Millennium Kids, which works with Aboriginal youths to do replanting on sites degraded by mining.
By JENNY D’ANGER
Fremantle Timber Traders
41 Wood St, Fremantle