and growing

Sitka Spruce, the most widely planted softwood species in Scotland, takes up to 40 years to reach maturity. Around 90% of the softwood harvested and processed by James Jones is Sitka Spruce, the other 10% being made up of Pine, Larch and Douglas Fir.


and processing

The harvesting process ensures that stock is only taken from sustainable sources, with James Jones having FSC chain of custody accreditation for all the roundwood timber it purchases. More than 150 hectares (that's approximately 210 football pitches) of forest are harvested every week to keep the company’s sawmills supplied.


Investing and
future proofing

Once felling is complete in an area the brash is left to die, which naturally puts valuable nutrients back into the soil. Once this has happened new saplings are planted, usually by hand, ensuring a fully sustainable cycle is maintained by James Jones and the landowner.


Felling and Forwarding

After trees are felled by the harvester they are then transported to an easily accessible roadside area by a forwarding machine (pictured). The harvested logs are then collected by one of our haulage contractors, who form a vital part of the James Jones log supply team.



The logs are then transported by road to one of our sawmills. Typically we aim to harvest timber within 50-60 miles of our closest sawmill. Our mills process more than 1.4 million tonnes of roundwood every year – that’s 42,000 logs every day.


Preparing for Processing

Once at the sawmill the logs are sorted based on their size and then sent down the sawline for primary processing, where they are cut into timber sections for use in construction, pallet production, packaging, fencing and landscaping.

Click and Drag

Digital Scanning

Like all industries, sawmilling is now heavily reliant on digital technology and every log that enters our Lockerbie 3 sawmill is digitally scanned within seconds to ensure that we can maximise the timber potential of every single log that comes into the site.


Automated Processing

Advanced computer software at Lockerbie means James Jones can achieve an average yield of more than 60% from every single log, that's significantly higher than the industry average and means our mills can cut more useable timber from every log that we receive.



After the manual grading all timber also goes through an automated grading process – which picks up any internal quality indicators. We only ever let the highest quality timber get through.


Visual inspection

Once primary processing is complete the timber can undergo a number of secondary processes. All wood is graded by eye by a skilled technician who removes any pieces of timber that don't meet James Jones’s high standards


Kilning time

James Jones has the largest kilning capacity of any timber company in the UK, which means that we can kiln our wood more sympathetically, allowing the timber to be dried more slowly and more evenly to ensure less distortion. If kilned too quickly, timber can become susceptible to breakage.


Treatment and Incising

The wood can then be treated in a number of ways to ensure that it will retain its shape and strength for years to come. We kiln-dry the wood to reduce the moisture content; we can treat the wood with chemicals to fight off rot and insect attacks and we can also incise wood to ensure our treatments keep our ground contact wood products in great condition.


Mini-bundling and incising

Innovations such as mini-bundling give greater protection for small section timber and James Jones was one of the first UK timber companies to introduce incising, which is the only way to ensure treated spruce fence posts meet Use Class 4, meaning we offer a 15-year warranty on all incised product.



There is 0% waste in our timber processing - everything we harvest in the forest gets used. We produce around 650,000 tonnes of bark, wood chips and sawdust (what we call co-product) a year and this goes to other companies who process that for products such as MDF, animal bedding, landscaping materials etc. We send a proportion of our co-product to the E.on biomass plant next door to our Lockerbie mill and in return they pipe hot water to our site to heat our kilns, reducing our carbon emissions by 20,000 tonnes every year.


Ensuring the best quality timber from sapling to sawmill

At every stage of the process, from forest floor to delivered product, James Jones demonstrates that taking a little more care at every stage of the process ensures that the timber we produce and sell to our loyal customers is always the very best it can be.


Watch our Tree to Timber video

If you want to find out more about how we process our timber watch our Tree to Timber video by clicking the button below.