We offer a design, advice, consultancy and training service to prospective builders, self-builders, architects and community groups who want to build with straw bales. We are not a construction company, rather we aim to empower others to be involved in the whole process of building, through support, skill-sharing, training and advice.
Our involvement in each project is as much or as little as the client requires.
Our design input may mean simply checking over plans produced by the client or client’s architect/draughtsperson, or it could mean providing full plans for planning permission and building regulation purposes.
Our involvement in building may be limited to providing on-site training in strawbale construction for volunteers or course participants, or it could mean working closely with a local firm of builders or carpenters to train them in the specific knowledge they require in order to work with straw successfully.
A typical project
- would include us working with your draughtsperson or architect at the design stage, and producing detailed construction drawings that would include all relevant information for building regulations and ordering of materials.
- We would then be available by phone or email for on-the-spot advice if required by the carpenters and builders involved in the preparations for building solceller.
- We would be on site to train volunteers, course participants, or a local firm in strawbale building techniques, and to oversee quality control as the straw bale walls went up.
- This training could include carpentry if required.
- The rest of the building, including roofing, plumbing, electrics and carpentry would typically be carried out either by a local firm, or self-builders, or a combination of both. Again, we would expect to train them in relevant details in order for the building to be a success and we would be available for help and advice if needed during the rest of the build.
- Plastering of the walls could be done either as a volunteer training project in a similar fashion to the strawbale walls, or could be undertaken by professional lime plasterers.
In all cases, the key to a durable and energy efficient strawbale building lies in good design, a sound understanding of the principles of strawbale building, quality work and attention to detail throughout the building process, and adequate and appropriate maintenance throughout the life of the building.
If you need additional or specific advice, you can contact us on a consultancy basis, for which there is a minimum charge for the first ten minutes of:
- for professionals and funded groups
- for students, self-builders and unfunded groups
thereafter per hour pro rata.
However, for individuals and unfunded groups who cannot meet these costs, we will continue to offer 10 minutes of free telephone consultancy on Wednesday afternoons between 2.00pm and 6.00pm.
Fully Illustrated lectures, talks, workshops available — slides/powerpoint presentations and demonstration builds for your group, institution or event.
Design advice and consultancy offered; site visits and on-site supervision and training given.
Rates – on application .
In some cases, work swaps or discounts may be possible.
Please feel free to call us or email if you want to discuss this further.