A former Premier League footballer is hoping to corner the property market after launching an eco-friendly timber frame housing business in Wyre.
Ex-Manchester City and Blackburn Rovers captain Garry Flitcroft has snapped up a 20,000 sqft factory on an eight acre site in St Michael’s, near Garstang, formerly Maple Sustainable, which has become the home for Flitcraft EcoBuild timber frame specialists.
The company, which employs 25, designs and makes self-build kit houses, using a timber frame system comprising injected structural insulated panels.
Unlike traditional building methods, Flitcraft’s timber frame structures are precision engineered under factory conditions and then delivered directly to the site, where they are crane erected.
As well as being highly energy efficient and better for the environment, the timber frame houses are faster to build and more cost effective.
Garry said: “I’ve always been interested in property.
“My dad was a builder so when I was 18 I bought four or five properties with my first signing on fee at Man City and things have snowballed from there. I’ve built up a large property portfolio over 25 years, consisting of residential and commercial property built in the traditional way.
“Predominantly we do bespoke projects and in those instances we are helping clients to build their dream homes. But there are any number of ways this system can be applied, even down to beach huts, log cabins and instant extensions.
“With a traditional build it takes a lot longer to build a property because it’s a wet trade. You have to wait for all of the plaster and the mortar to dry out.
“Timber frame properties are made in factory conditions so the panels are then brought to the site and erected by crane, which means the speed of build is so much quicker.”
The other big attraction of timber frame structures is their green credentials.
“In my opinion, this represents the future for the UK construction sector.
“This system is virtually zero carbon and because the houses are so well insulated, we estimate the annual heating cost for a typical four or five bedroom property could be as little as £500 per year.”
He said enquiries have come from as far afield as Scotland, the Isle of Man, and even Switzerland.
Garry added: “The order book is looking strong. We’ve got a state-of-the-art factory that is capable of doing £20m turnover per year.”