Bristol City Council came to the Sustainable Traditional Buildings Alliance (the STBA) to address the issues associated with the Solid Wall Insulation (SWI) works that they were doing. The video and associated tools (that can be found at https://warmupbristol.co.uk/content/planning-guidance-your-home) have been developed to help locals find out about solid wall insulation (SWI) and the issues associated with it.
As you will know we are board members of the STBA and so have a keen understanding of the issues around SWI. So we recommend that anyone thinking about SWI should have a look at the video made for the Bristol as certainly many areas of Wales are in a similar climate / weather pattern to those living over the channel.
Getting the balance right is really, really important and the whole house approach is one that we have been delivering on for many years. With Bristol taking the lead we hope that many councils in Wales will learn from this ground breaking work and adopt a similar approach.
We really need Building Control, Planners as well as Architects and Builders to get onboard with this knowledge and concept. Without their buy-in it is difficult for owners of houses to enact on the best advice. Our focus on energy only is ruining houses and homes and we need to stop, take a breath and really look at each house individually.
Assessing the structure, materials, occupation, context and character of a building is MORE important that just looking at how much energy it is predicted to use (by using inaccurate EPCs). We need to ensure that the integrity of the house is improved by addressing ventilation, material compatibility etc otherwise we will end up damaging the health of the structure and its occupants. That is a waste of resources, money and ultimately will not address the underpinning threat of climate change.
So if you are thinking about refurbishing your home and want an independent assessment of what to do, what the risks are, what materials will minimise impacts on your health etc etc then give us a call at the Eco Home Centre.