Salvo celebrates 30 years

Reclaim, Reuse, Repeat since 1991

Our story began as a reaction to the UK demolitions of the 60s and 70s when masses of reclaimable building materials including around 24 million tonnes of unique timbers were destroyed. This needless waste inspired the creation of pioneering businesses dedicated to rescuing materials, and the reclamation scene was born.

One of those early businesses was Walcot Reclamation, a salvage yard co-founded in the 70s by Thornton Kay. In 1991 he launched Salvo with Hazel Matravers to promote reuse by promoting the UK’s reclamation network to reduce the amount of salvageable materials that ended in landfill.

Initially a directory of dealers to make it easier for people to buy architectural salvage, Salvo soon grew into a movement. The Salvo Code was established to offer confidence for buyers as to the provenance of truly reclaimed items. Simply look for the crane logo – an ancient symbol of vigilance – the sign of Salvo members.

Today, Salvo is known for its unparalleled architectural salvage fairs and online marketplace – matching something reclaimed or recrafted with someone that wants to reuse it. On you will find everything from original Crittall doors to stone walling to chandeliers, and now reclaimed fashion and home fashion to toast our 30th in all its pearliness.

Long appreciated for its connection with history, reuse of salvage is increasingly considered crucial for its contribution to reducing carbon emissions. Driven by the shocking statistic that only 1% of building materials are reused, Salvo is currently a partner in the major futuREuse FCRBE EU project to encourage the construction industry to increase reuse of reclaimed building elements by 50% by 2032.

Salvo continues to champion reuse as a priority, and reaches a loyal and ever-growing community that sees reuse as a lifestyle to not only build, but dress your home and yourself for the world you want.


Get to know

1. Source

Shop directly on SalvoWEB or search listings for items for sale, which include things like architectural salvage, antiques and reclaimed building materials. We also offer a bespoke sourcing service. Whether you are a private buyer or a professional working across the built environment, you can make the most of free tools like Wanted adverts to source through Salvo’s network. 

2. Sell

If renovating, avoid sending architectural features and materials to landfill by using Salvo to sell them. Listing pieces as soon as you can will maximise their chance of a second life. You can post free Demolition alerts to connect with potential buyers well in advance of planned dismantling and demolition.

3. Join

Salvo is a free resource for all, and a member-based reuse destination for design and construction professionals, reclamation dealers and craftspeople, with a technical reuse specification library and embodied carbon calculators.