Timber Intent’s ‘Skipper’ is a wood and fabric structure whose graceful, modern lines would complement the most stylish of garden designs while giving practical, year-round shelter. An affordable alternative to bespoke structures, it measures 5m by 5m and is robust, durable, environmentally friendly and economical.
“The Skipper’s tent membrane takes probably the simplest tensile 3D form possible – a ‘hypar’, or saddle shape,” explains Timber Intent MD Roger Brisley. “This beautiful simplicity is deceptive, however, because the construction is highly engineered and built to last. It’s easy to imagine the wealth of possible uses for this stylish, innovative shelter.”
The ‘Skipper’ – which is designed in accordance with building regulations and current codes of practice – has an ethically-sourced, 100% cotton canvas membrane covering 25 square metres, stretched between solid timber ‘legs’ to provide a completely clear space underneath. It’s also an economical choice, because the experts at Timber Intent have already carried out all the engineering and analysis involved in its creation, rather than starting from scratch as with an individual, made-to-measure structure.
The canopy is available in most colours, and natural white or red-ochre can be supplied as standard. The fabric is proofed against fire, wet and rot to BS7837. It’s easily cleaned and will last about 10 years once permanently installed, although easy re-treatment can bring many more years of all-weather use.
The corner poles can be arranged in different ways, with a choice of full timber tripod with bench seat; pole/guy bipods; or pole/pole bipods, which avoid hard rigging ropes and are more noticeable. All solid poles are debarked and, for safety, sharp corners and knots are removed.
All the wood used in the ‘Skipper’ is ethically sourced, and is mostly ‘thinnings’ from Douglas Fir trees (or similar) that would otherwise be used for firewood, fence-posts or paper pulp. Timber Intent also insists on locally grown, Forest Stewardship Council [FSC]-certified wood. “Our most consistent supplier is the Duchy of Cornwall, whose staff are always happy to help and can offer us a plentiful supply,” adds Roger.