It's at this time of the year especially that I get a real buzz from the solar array on top of my house, and from the green roof planting that thrives in the cool shade beneath. From Spring to Autumn it's a real pleasure to go home and see how much heat has been harvested from the free energy of the sun. Normally from Spring to Autumn the domestic hot water for both the main house and the rented flat is virtually free. Indeed at present too much energy is produced and the plan one day is to use the 11metre long pool in the garden as a solar dump for all the excess solar energy.


Our 5-storey mixed use development in Exmouth Market for a private trust is now complete. Originally for rental, the trust decided to sell them on long leases. All flats were sold within days of being put on the market. Tim Crocker's photographs will follow soon.

An Introduction to Passive House front cover

Introduction to Passive House is intended to be an easy-to-read introduction to why and how architects, policy makers and all those who procure works to new and existing buildings can collaborate in transforming the quality of our built environment, domestic and non-domestic, new-build and existing. The benefits of this transformation embrace occupants, users and the wider natural environment; now and for countless generations into the future.


...with the core body of the Technology Strategy Board funded research running to over 30,000 words, together with reports produced by researchers and academics at University College London, Cranfield University and RMIT Melbourne.

Introduction to Passive House (or Passivhaus) book
To mark the publication of Justin Bere's new book 'an Introduction to Passive House' the magazine Passive House + asked Justin for an opinion piece for the latest UK edition. Here it is:

Nearing completion in Exmouth Market, London, is our mixed use, part facade retention, part new build project for the Debenham Trust. The project is designed and executed to a very high quality under a traditional contract. Firmco are the main contractor. After working hard to achieve a number of low energy and Passive House (or Passivhaus) retrofit projects with us, this traditional building company, with it's own labour force, has worked hard to embed the new 21st century construction skills into its armoury of techniques, alongside the best traditional construction skills.


For those at my RIBA talk today, this is the book I recommended for helping in the design of good, thermally efficient details. It is titled Details for Passive House Buildings, edtited by IBO, the Austrian Institute for Healthy and Ecological Building, published by Springer Wien NewYork.


RIBA Publications have commissioned a UK printer to produce this book which is due for release before Christmas.


The Financial Times is just about to run an article on the Tighthouse Passive House in NYC which is a really beautiful piece of architecture and a great example of integrated design – by that I mean architecture that combines the qualities of attractive design, high performance, low energy use and great comfort for the occupants. To achieve such a high design quality in a retrofit of a NYC row house that’s over 100 years old makes it all the more of a triumph.


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