Eco House at Goudhurst, Kent, UK

Designed with Farrells, the eco house is stepped into a hillside with views across the Kent High Weald. Planning permission was approved in 2015 for the 5 bed family home with NPPF para 55 exceptional design quality and innovation. Construction has commenced for completion in 2019 with the significant innovation of the first installation of innovative Cemfree concrete in a landmark residential building. The Cemfree activates 95% ground blast furnace slag GGBS producing an ultra low carbon alternative concrete mix as a replacement for designs which use cement. (Cement creates 5-8% of all C02 emissions, making it the third highest human produced source of C02 after transport and energy).  The proposed house has been located carefully in the sloping site, set down and positioned so that open views to the west are retained and the height is low and discrete, whilst still maintaining a presence and frontage to the east for continuity with the houses on North Road. The house is designed with paired components which are linked, stepped in height and cranked in plan. These adjustments respond to the site’s sloping topography, the setting of neighbouring houses and the wider views. The proposed external materials are local supplied brick, tile and timber, which are used in conjunction with the Cemfree to have low embodied carbon, an exemplar approach for other rural buildings.

Client: Private owner

Service provided: RIBA stages 1 to 6

Use: Residential private dwelling

Units/area: Private house 420m2 

Site area: Approx 0.2ha