lhsbanner buildregisters oran

lhsbanner csbtk blue

lhsbanner fmb2

News

Right To Build Task Force South West Expo for self-build and custom

NaCSBA's Right To Build Task Force is hosting an expo near Exeter on the 8 March, sharing updates and information on the local picture of Right To Build progress for local autho....

Read more

New Housing Minister Raab joins elevated housing department

Dominic Raab has been appointed as Housing Minister, joining the newly elevated Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government under Secretary of State for Housing Sajid ....

Read more

Could the Right To Build be a route to homes for key-workers?

Richard Bacon asks the question: could the Right To Build be used to create homes to attract key-workers to areas struggling to recruit and retain core staff?

Read more

New Homes England agency to focus on more land for custom and self-build

Government has announced that the Homes and Communities Agency has been rebranded as Homes England in a move that will see more land being brought forward for development.

Read more

Huge 80% increase in people signed up to create their own home

 Recent research by the National Custom and Self-Build Association (NaCSBA) shows that 33,000 people have now signed up to the Right To Build registers.

Read more

Case Studies

Contemporary Timber Frame Home

Read more

Passivhaus Family Farmhouse

Read more

Steel Farm

Read more

Merlin Haven

Read more

Timber Frame Home, Ventnor

Read more

Aldcliffe Yard, Lancaster

Read more

Walthamstow Social Rent Scheme

Read more

Prefabricated Passivhaus bungalow

Read more

Cookham Dean, Berkshire

Read more

Harvest House

Read more

Bickleigh Eco Village, Devon

Read more

Stoke-on-Trent Serviced Building Plots

Read more

Forevergreen House

Read more

Housing People Building Communities

Read more

Sülzer Freunde, Cologne

Read more

Berlin - 'Building Groups'

Read more

Manor Farm, Kirton

Read more

Straw-baling, Perthshire

Read more

Findhorn

Read more

Almere, Holland

Read more

Hockerton

Read more

Top tips

Red Tape

Red Tape Read more

we support_logo-2tb

Merlin Haven

Background:

  • This three-storey detached home in Wotton-under-Edge, Gloucestershire, was built for a retiring couple.
  • The homeowners were related to their architect and asked him to design a home for them.
  • The homeowners were comprehensively involved in the initial design process with a clear brief of what they wanted - however a main contractor did the majority of the build.
  • It was always an aspiration of the homeowners to build their own home and they were keen get their son-in-law involved.
  • The four-bedroom home has a double height space and is orientated to take advantage of the view across the Cotswolds.

Delivery:

  • The architect, 3bd, was instructed to take on the main design role and secured planning permission with no major issues.
  • Sylva Group provided the timber frame and project management expertise with a main contractor - R Williams Building & Ground Works Ltd - undertaking the building process.
  • The four-bedroom three-storey home sits on a 190m2 plot.
  • The construction consists of a concrete cast in-situ basement slab set into the side of the hill, with an advanced, closed panel timber frame above, finished in Cedar cladding.
  • The home incorporates a basement that is hidden from the front but has access to the rear garden given the steeply sloping nature of the site.
  • The homeowners wanted a living space designed with an open-plan feel throughout the ground floor, linked to three bedrooms and study space above by a double-height space which is glazed to take full advantage of the Cotswold views.
  • The timber frame is a version of Sylva's high-end 'Ever Green' system, incorporating thermally decoupled studs filled with Hemcrete and hemp fibre insulation. Roof rafters were fully filled with insulation and a final layer of insulation was installed under them providing a substantial level of thermal performance.
  • There is underfloor heating and a whole house Mechanical Ventilation Heat Recovery System (MVHR) to take advantage of the fabric first approach.
  • The interior was fitted out by the main contractor and is finished with glass balustrading, wooden floors, plus a modern kitchen and bathrooms, as well as a feature staircase.

Finance:

  • Build costs came to approximately £300,000.
  • The house has a build cost of £1,579 per m2.

Timescale:

  • April 2013 - Site clearance and construction starts
  • July 2013 - Work on internal fit-out starts
  • November 2013 - Home completed

Learning Points:

  • Having a friend or relation who is employed in the construction sector can be extremely helpful. They can offer advice or even get fully involved in helping you design and/or build your own home. 
  • The cantilever to the front required both steel and timber beams, so careful detailing was needed to stop thermal/cold bridges (breaks in the fabric layer of a building) which might compromise the high thermal performance.
  • In this case, the main contractor didn't have a great deal of experience in construction of basements/timber frames but it enlisted a number of trusted sub-contractors to work on these areas - and Sylva liaised effectively between them. However, self builders managing a similar project themselves should take care to ensure that sub-contractors are talking to each other and the self builder needs to sit in the middle of any decision making.

Related Links:

Merlin HavenMerlin HavenMerlin HavenMerlin HavenMerlin HavenMerlin HavenMerlin HavenMerlin Haven