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Nico Laurent

Nico Laurent

Lifting Operations Manager

Joined Carpenter Oak: 2005

Interview with Nico

What is the best project you have worked on and why?
The Barn, a balcony curved in plan and elevation over two floors. I liked it because it was out of the ordinary and tricky to make

When not in the yard, what do you enjoy doing?
Hill walking, rock climbing, riding my motorbike.

If stranded on a desert island, which three people would you take and why?
My best pal Geatan for fun, Bear Grylls could be handy, Billy Connolly for entertainment

What music do you listen to?
AC/DC, Captain Beefheart, The Clash

What is the best comedy film ever made?
The Life of Brian

What do you enjoy most about working with wood/oak?
The warmth of the material, the fact it’s renewable and that with basic tools and your hands you can transform it into something practical and beautiful.

Do you have a favourite quote?
‘Theory is a treasure whose practice is key’

Where is your favourite place in the world?
Fairy Glen, Skye

At the age of fifteen, influenced by my father, I decided to follow an apprenticeship as a timber framer in the Compagnons, a French trade school. I’ve been learning for the following eleven years, by travelling over France, changing yards every six months to see different ways of framing and taking evening and weekend training, doing models and drawings. Over this period, I went for a year in Sint Marteen in the Caribbean, to learn how to build storm-resistant structures. I had to stop framing for a year to serve in the 21st Marine Infantry Regiment where I did my time in New Caledonia in the South Pacific. In the last year of my training, motivated to learn English and through a friend who worked for Carpenter Oak, I came to Scotland, originally for a year’s experience, in 2005. I was offered to stay, so I’ve been working in Scotland ever since, enjoying the yard and the country.

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