Decking Network Seminar with APL leads the way

Decking Network Seminar with APL leads the way

The APL is the UK’s leading organisation for Professional Landscapers. Since its inception in 1995 it has led the way in creating standards for correct construction in Landscaping.

The Associations of professional Landscapers leads the way in landscaping having the only written codes of practice. This includes Decking, Paving and Artificial grass. January 18, 2021 saw 77 in attendance to an APL organised Zoom meeting where the Decking Network took centre stage. Hosted by Karl Harrison, the informative presentation was a far cry from selling anything. Instead it was a professional discussion about a few on-point decking topics.

New innovations in Decking materials

The topic kicked off with a brief intro on HDPE decking structures. High Density Polyethylene, being an indestructible decking structure with a world breaking durability and long life… it does cost a bit though. The next on the innovation list was the “Combination Joists System” this being an aluminium extrusion with an inlay of HDPE… A stroke of genius for such a thing but the question was “is it really necessary”. In short, it was a problem solver by having an increased beam and joist span over conventional structures. Overall, the balance between material and price didn’t convince the audience.

The third element to the structural trilogy was the simple solution to an everlasting decking structure. It has virtually no movement, no rot, cost effective and easy to install was the Aluminium Structure as a stand-alone item.

 What is modified Timber?

The modification of timber refers to timber that has subjected to a chemical process where the structure of the timber has changed permanently. This isn’t a paint on solution but a more complicated process of altering the cell structure of the timber. These processes are called Acetylation, Furfrylation and a third method of increasing the density of the timber.

The all have incredible warranties against rotting. The durability and service life are rather impressive too. Kebony warranties their decking for 30 years and Accoya and Lignia are for 50 years out of the ground… All three of these stalwarts of the timber decking offering have an expected service life well in excess of their warranties.

£300 plus vat per sq m for decking “You must be joking” how do you price for decking?

A question that has been on the circuit since time began and will continue ad infinitum. In a complex presentation on a pricing matrix via spread sheet everyone agreed unanimously that the industry had it right. IT broke the clients offering down into four component parts.

  1. Preliminary costs
  2. Overheads
  3. Materials
  4. Labour

The prelims element refers to the costs that without which the project couldn’t be done. Site meetings, RAMS, Health and safety, CDM 2015, specification and design. The law requires adhesion to most of these.

Overheads, basic costs of running a professional business. Employment, Insurance, vehicles, tool, training, first aid, certification, websites, advertising… these are all in essence underwritten by the client

Materials are self-explanatory and ordered in accordance with the specification. Justifiably required for the job, without which the project wouldn’t happen

Labour, again an essential element of all projects, this being professionally well trained, educated and experienced folk that work in all weathers.

The audience of this Decking Network seminar discussed pricing for some time… its a hot topic.

There is a simple guide as to the cost of a decking installation found here

Hey, let’s not forget profit.

This is by no means a dirty word here. Profit is a healthy proposition and means the company that installed your project is on hand for years to come to offer after service for you…

decking network association of professional landscapers
Decking information online

 Specification and open discussion

Aimed at Designers and assisted the whole Network to demonstrate that a well written specification was essential as required under CDM 2015. This spec’ indicates to the client exactly what is happening on your project. It will also have clear drawings for all elements of the build and should justify the prelims, overheads, labour and materials listed above.

Why should you join the Association of Professional Landscapers?

There are far too many to mention and would need several news releases like this one to give this question the justice it deserves.

You will be invited to regular events like this for free including the next Decking Network seminar, you get to learn new stuff too… You’ll certainly meet some of the world leading Landscapers and Consultants, ask them questions… and you’ll get real answers. You even get to have the reg’s in writing to refer too.

There’s all the legislation, reg’s and a whole load of assistance to get you through it.

Advice… omg’ there must be thousands of combined years of experience between all of the members…

Furthermore, if the stuff you build is any good you may even win an award at the annual APL Awards, hosted in London and attended by north of 600 fellow landscapers… dinner, drinks and an incredible experience. One not to miss!

Do contact Phil Tremayne at the APL if you are interested. follow this link then Click the red JOIN button top right of the screen


This event was supported by the APL and by kind invitation to members of the Decking Network, these events are normally for APL members only.

Decking materials supported by


Country Supplies

Owatrol UK

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