NZ Dairy Summer 2021

88 | nzdairy Covering all bases with expertise in Sue Russell RURAL SERVICES » Eltham Construction Joe and Clare Menzies say the way their Taranaki construction, timber and farm supply company has evolved, has been the result of seizing opportunities to ensure there is a full service offering was future-proofed. For instance, Eltham Timber & Supplies came about to ensure their contracting business had a ready supply of timber and from this and engagement with the rural sector, the farm barn building division arose. “When you can store timber it gives you much more control over the uncertainties in the supply chain. We’ve managed to find a private sawmill to provide our timber and it just means we can plan and proceed with projects well,” Joe explains. In fact when NZ Dairy spoke with Joe early November he had just received his first truck-load of timber to store in their yard. “It means I can fix a price and budget a build accordingly.” In the construction part of the company there’s a team of seven while Joe says his days are often punctuated with digging holes, delivering materials and site cleaning. “I’ve had the team with me now for some time and they enjoy the variety of projects we take on. These days barns come in all shapes and sizes and degrees of sophistication.” Asked just how busy they are, as we approach the business-end of the year, Joe says there are 20 reasonably good shed builds ahead. “These days farm sheds and barns often morph into something else, like art or hobby spaces and people like to mark their individual stamp on them.” Commenting on the current timber supply stresses the construction sector generally is experiencing, Joe says one of the factors contributing to this is the lack of domestic saw mills. New warehouse build looking fresh and ready to fit out. Some, he says sadly have been forced to close down, leaving consumers reliant on a smaller number of large-scale timber processing plants, which impacts on supply and consequently price. “COVID has certainly had an impact as well, with people, choosing to spend money on new buildings, rather than overseas trips. We’re all busy.” Beyond farm barns, implement sheds, sleep-outs and associated buildings, Eltham Construction also builds decks, fences, retaining walls and what Joe describes as some ‘pretty fancy sheds’. And with so much work on, Joe says life would be perfect with just two more staff on board. “Everyone is looking for building and construction staff so finding the right people with the right attitude to fit in and get on with the work well is a challenge at this time.” Asked about life in Taranaki and in and around his district in Eltham Joe says there’s a definite sense that the people who are born and bred in the ‘Naki’ are proud of the region and have a ‘can-do No. 8 wire’ mentality. “We figure out problems and find solutions without going too far and wide. We’re going to start work next week on a barn that will be home to a whole lot of American cars owned by an enthusiast.” Eltham Timber & Supplies is located at 25 North St, Eltham. “These days farm sheds and barns often morph into something else, like art or hobby spaces and people like to mark their individual stamp on them.” Bridge Street, Eltham • Phone (06) 764 8205 • · Palm Kernel · Fertiliser · Loader · Road cartage · Air strip cartage · Grader · Lime fines · Flat decks · Metal supplies · Tippers · Bottom dumpers · Farm tracks · Machine transporter Transport & Diesel Services 28 Glover Road, Hawera | Phone 06 278 5740 | Proudly supporting Eltham Construction TDS - Providing full servicing, preventive maintenance & COF repairs, including on and off road servicing New workshop | New Location All Trucks | All Trailers Civil Construction Breakdown Service 24/7