Following our recent successful master class in October 2023 I would like to share some of the feedback. How to build a cost effective Eco home is a hot topic and people were very engaged.
We can arrange bespoke times and resource is for groups that want to come to experience a similar session and we set up specific dates when this master class runs throughout the year. If you are interested in attending one of these or would like your own private session for your colleagues please do get in touch.
Feedback from attendees on our Hockerton Housing Project Master Class:
Dear Simon Thank you all so much for a truly eye opening and inspiring day….. I cannot think of any improvement that was needed, though I should have kept a photo of your data spreadsheet showing how economical the project has been.
I read that HHP can assess your house for heat loss and energy saving £160 upwards I think. Please can you suggest if our house is beyond help, though if you think it worth reviewing I would be very interested.
Very best wishes Graeme
Apologies for not getting back to you! I was away last week and haven’t caught up with emails yet.
It was a great day and much appreciated. Really enjoyed meeting other like minded people.
Hopefully speak soon.
Dear Simon > > I feel terrible that I’ve neglected to thank you so, so much for a > wonderful day again at HHP, long before today. ….. > I so enjoyed your latest presentation and felt it was right up to the > moment, which feeling, it was clear was shared by all. > > A huge thank you too to Deb (I hope this reaches her!) for yet another > wonderful Hockerton Feast! Utterly delicious and SOoo nutritious! > > > With all very best wishes from us all > > Nick
Hope you’ve had a great weekend.
Absolutely fine to share emails around – not a problem at all! It would be really interesting and useful to stay in touch with some of the others from the course!
All positive feedback from my end – I think it was so good to have the opportunity to meet others from various backgrounds whilst also going through the learnings. Having cross sections on the walls was useful to put the information you’d given into context; as was the tour of the site, particularly the house itself!
Overall I really enjoyed the day – there was ample opportunity to ask questions and the Pilgrims Barn case study was fascinating!
Thanks and chat soon,
In terms of feedback, I thought the day was really well structured and I must say, as a complete novice with all this, pitched at a great level. I found it very engaging, and accessible and thought you created an atmosphere where people weren’t put off from asking questions!
The combination of the theory, the data and seeing it all in practice is very compelling. I’ve been talking the hind leg off quite a few friends ever since and haven’t been able to shake the idea that TikTok and Instagram reels would be a great tool for sharing the Hockerton story and principles. I find it both baffling and depressing that the major developers haven’t enlisted your services and continue to build such poor-performing housing stock.
Thanks again to you and the team at Hockerton for such a good day.
All the best,
P.S. Before I forget, the lunch was absolutely on point too!!
So if you want to come and lean about how to build very cost effective eco home that meets the current building regulations easily and perform far better than most as the cost to build is such good value – click here.
How do we approach trying to have a green holiday after all we are not in the office all the time. My hobby is climbing and often aim to climb on holiday. There is a new approach to reduce the impact this is called “Green Pointing”.
So what is Green Pointing and can you apply it? (Also know as EcoPointing for esoteric reasons)
We have been minimising flying for the last 20 years, perhaps a flight every 10 years over this period, the last one was to Sardinia in 2014 when the boat from Italy wasn’t running and we would have missed out on the “team trip” without a flight. With family, the journey involved Eurostar and sleeper to Barcelona, Malaga or Venice. These were great starts to climbing trips, some family time and a shared novel before launching into a frenetic week of climbing with a bunch of teenagers, and grownups. In those days we squeezed the children into the smallest hire car for the last leg.
Offspring are long gone but the urge to climb in Europe stays and in early 2020 we invested in electric Brompton bikes so we could get to the destination without a car at all. Then COVID struck and we had to wait until summer 2022 to try them out with our gear. We had a great trip to the Arriege returning to the lovely accommodation of John Arran (Chez Arran) and all his new routes.
This year as the Climate emergency becomes the focus of much of our spare time, we still need a climbing break. In Conversations with our daughter Flo and the Lattice team we have become aware of “Green Pointing” or as they call it “Ecopointing“. So, our trip to Orpierre is just that!
Breakfast at home. A 7-mile spin on the bikes to Newark. Train to London and lunch and then Eurostar to Paris for dinner. Cycling through Paris cycles routes gets better each time and we stayed in a very tiny but perfect flat in an Airbnb before catching the morning train to Grenoble. A coach through an Alpine pass to Eyguians and the final leg back on the Bromptons for 5 miles to Orpierre.
Unfortunately, the precise moment we set off from Eyguians the weather broke and we had one of our wettest rides ever accompanied by hailstones, thunder and lightning. We dripped into our chalet and sorted ourselves out, snuggled down ready for our first sunny days climbing.
We had 2 weeks to rack up a long list of redpoints, flashes and on-sights (All climbing jargon for ascending rock faces.) before we reversed the trip home with a night in Grenoble rather than Paris. And for the really keen climbers who read this…Notable climbs achieved were: Caroline 7b *** redpoint, La Fin Justifie les Moyens 7a+ redpoint and Misere 7a Onsight. All the stars were absolutely spot on. Many more lower grade routs were very worthwhile but often the lower the grade the more the polish. It’s becoming a popular sport!
Green pointing the trip is part of the adventure and although it will still be carbon heavy its much less so than flying. It will almost certainly have cost more than flying depending on how far in advance you book and there is lots of embodied energy in our bikes but they are a long term investment. We have have to change our behaviour in some way in thee face of the climate crises. To all the conscientious climbers out there we can and should do what we can to reduce our impact whilst we do what we do! How can the non climbers reading this apply it? Well that’s up to you … perhaps consider reducing you impact by taking more local holidays , stopping flying and getting into active transport. And may be give it a name! Happy Green Pointing!
Hints and tips:
I booked the Eurostar and internal French trains via the Rail Europe app.
If you book your UK trains in person in a station showing your Eurostar ticket you can get it as part of the CIV scheme which means if the UK train is late and you miss the connection you can hop on the next Eurostar without paying… just a hint.
Brompton electric folding bikes are the bees’ knees but do bear in mind if you want to take them on the Eurostar you need to put them in a bag. I used our rope ground sheet with elastic in the corners to wrap around mine to make it look like it’s in a bag. Seemed to pass muster. I think it’s to protect other bags from oily chains etc.
The bus from Grenoble was the 51 to Nice, runs once a day and we could only reserve a place via the Zou web site. We could only buy the ticket on the bus which was fine as there was plenty of space. I could not get the Zou app to work to buy a ticket in the UK!
The camp site in Orpierre, Koawa is great and very close to the climbs, we looked out over most of the cliffs! Most of the campers seemed to be climbers when we went in May. Walking up to the crag… fifteen minutes to the closest and may be 60 minutes to the very furthest towards the North-eastern sectors via Adrech parking. We cycled up to this car park and walked from there.
Sadly Le Puy sector is currently closed as the locals fear rock falls.
The France Haute Provence Rockfax guide is good but the local guide has most of the new routes in which are numerous – plenty of un-polished routes. Available in the tourist information centre in Orpierre.
There is a market on Sundays in Orpierre and a good small supermarket with very friendly staff. Check out the opening times when you get there.
The UN secretary general, António Guterres, said: “This report is a clarion call to massively fast-track climate efforts by every country and every sector and on every timeframe. Our world needs climate action on all fronts: everything, everywhere, all at once.”
See what Nick and Saffy Wolley’s house looks like now here, with comments from the owners. “An awful lot more detail lies behind the information given, but I hope this may spark some interest!”, adds Nick Wolley.
Inspired by the sustainable, ecologically sound homes at Hockerton Housing Project, Nick and Saffy Wolley met with Simon Tilley and Nick Martin from Hockerton Housing Project to get help with finding the most sustainable way to build their new house.
Their new home, Pilgrim’s Barn, is a super insulated home with very low energy requirements and zero running costs and was completed in late 2022. Featuring floor to ceiling glass on the southern facing elevation, designed to harness passive heat it is a zero carbon performing home in rural Suffolk.
Nick Wolley, the owner, explains: “I have studied this construction since 2005, all originally researched and developed by the great Prof Brenda Vale (respected architect and researcher into the real science of cost-effective super-eco construction). Inevitably, over the ensuing years, various refinements and improvements have been incorporated and ‘smart systems’ added. However, it is hugely reassuring, having built this place as our own home, to find it almost surpasses all that I’d heard it could achieve. So much of it is just plain common-sense, with so many clever, but simple and cost-effective ways of gaining that improved performance and ultra-low-energy requirement. We moved in in October/early November; in the two pre-Christmas freeze (mainly down to -6/7C) our internal air temperature never went below 21C. We had nine of us here over Christmas and post the first freeze and all through the second one, which was also vicious, our air temperature never went below 23C; however, since it was built, apart from testing our underfloor heating for a couple of hours, it has not been switched on neither has it done so in accord with the master-switches.
Our excellent builder had never built such a house before, but he is now totally taken with it and wants to build nothing else, particularly as he now reckons it costs no more to build per sq metre than a conventional house which, looking to the future, will cost a fortune to run. I have to say that the actual cost I’ve paid for Pilgrims, bears this out. This is precisely what our expert, Hockerton advisers assured us; they have themselves proved this, since they built their first set of homes (actually designed for them by Brenda Vale herself) in 1995.
Our local community organisation Sustainable Hockerton is hoping to expand. It has had a successful few year generating energy with the local communities support. It is run by local people that volunteer their time to direct the society. The society has been operating since 2009 initially putting up a community owned wind turbine that you may have seen if you have been here as it operates on the outskirts of Hockerton. It has subsequently bought and installed three photovoltaic roof mounted systems helping local business to reduce their carbon impact and electricity bills. The income made by Sustainable Hockerton is generated from the sale of electricity and any profit made is distributed locally to support sustainable developments. This can cover many things from funding LED light bulbs to running educational workshops on saving energy or doing heat camera surveys of houses to improve their energy performance. As an organisation they want to do more.
So what are they offering?
We want to help businesses in Southwell and the surrounding area to install photovoltaic panels on their roofs to reduce carbon impact, reduce energy bills and support the local community. To make a big impact they are particularly interested in helping business properties with large rooves and high electricity bills. If you run a business and are struggling with energy costs but don’t have the capital to buy photovoltaic panels, they might be able to Help. If your roof is suitable for panels, they could substantially reduce your costs and help the environment at the same time.
The ideal roof is south facing and made of steel. The ideal energy consumption pattern is one where it is mostly used during the day, so the output matches the supply. Sustainable Hockerton could manage the installation and local people are supported in their action to tackle climate change with the distribution of the profits, and educational/motivational information and workshops. The business also benefits with cheap green electricity and good integration with the local area.
There are many ways we can tackle the oncoming climate crises and ecological catastrophe and I would welcome other ideas and offers of help. Currently we are working on offering workshops on energy conservation and heat camera surveys to help spot energy leaks from your home.
Businesses in Southwell this is an opportunity for you to help save the planet and reduce your energy bills. Please contact Simon Tilley.