Low-impact building articles

Jun
20
2021
Dave Darby

What kind of work do we want to do? Is working with our hands passé?

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There’s an approach to life that sees craft jobs, or smallholding and food production, including baking, brewing and beekeeping, as well as any kind of job that involves manual work and dexterity as somehow retrograde and passé, and that ‘work’ now means mainly putting on a suit and travelling to an office to do something-or-other in sectors such as finance, advertising, sales, fashion or PR. Read more …

Apr
15
2021
Eileen Sutherland

Putting straw on the public building map: the UP STRAW 2020 Yearbook

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Eileen Sutherland shares highlights from the UP STRAW 2020 Yearbook, as this pioneering pan-European project putting straw on the public and urban building map enters its final phases this spring and summer. Read more …

Nov
18
2020
Rowland Keable

Virtual International Clayfest 2020 – ‘building’ skills and building ‘skills’

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It’s a highlight of the natural building calendar not to be missed. EBUKI share news of this year’s upcoming virtual Clayfest, exploring and celebrating all things earth building on Friday 27th and Saturday 28th November 2020. Read more …

Nov
11
2020
Sophie Paterson

Review: A Complete Guide to Straw Bale Building by Rikki Nitzkin and Maren Termens

2

Sophie Paterson reviews a valuable new addition to any natural building bookshelf in the form of A Complete Guide to Straw Bale Building by Rikki Nitzkin and Maren Termens, published by Permanent Publications earlier this month. Read more …

Apr
5
2020
Paul Jennings

One Planet Development and access to land: Paul Jennings, OPD smallholder and self-builder

10

This is the first part of an interview with Paul Jennings, who lives on a smallholding in Pembrokeshire with his family, and built his own straw-bale home under the One Planet Development policy that exists in Wales (but not in England), which allows people to build a home on their land, even if it is outside the development zone, if they can show that they will live with an ecological footprint of one planet or less. Read more …

Jan
19
2020
Phil Christopher

Natural building and mutual credit: Phil Christopher of Huff & Puff Construction

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This is an informal chat with Phil Christopher of Huff & Puff Construction. He’s a natural builder who has registered his business with the Open Credit Network. He sees mutual credit as a way to build an alternative economy – sustainable, based on small- and medium-sized businesses, and embedded in communities. We talk about ways we might build little ecosystems of businesses, doing at least some of their trade with each other in mutual credit; and then linking those networks together to create a national system – the Open Credit Network. Read more …

Nov
6
2019
Ziggy Liloia

The differences between insulation and thermal mass

1

As the winter months approach here in the UK, natural builder Ziggy Liloia of The Year of Mud goes back to basics to explore the differences between insulation and thermal mass, and why they matter. Read more …

Oct
15
2019
Sigi Koko

How to plaster straw-bale walls with clay: the second coat

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Sigi Koko of Down to Earth Design shares her tips and tricks for how to plaster straw-bale walls with clay, this time tackling the second coat. Read more …

Sep
30
2019
Sophie Paterson

Straw bale, strohballen, strobaal: reflections on the European Straw Bale Gathering 2019

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Hosted by the UK for the first time last month, Lowimpact.org’s Sophie Paterson shares her reflections on the European Straw Bale Gathering 2019. Read more …

Sep
20
2019
Sigi Koko

How to plaster straw-bale walls with clay: the first coat

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Sigi Koko of Down to Earth Design shares her top tips for how to plaster straw-bale walls with clay, beginning with the first, or base, coat. Read more …

Sep
1
2019
Daniel Scharf

New planning developments might allow a lot more people to build their own home

4

There have been some developments in the planning system that might allow a lot more people to build their own home. First, here’s some background. Read more …

Aug
20
2019
Ziggy Liloia

Scribing wood to stone: how to scribe a wood post to a stone foundation

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Ziggy of The Year of Mud shares a how-to guide for scribing wood to stone, with a project fitting a wooden timber frame on to a stone foundation. Read more …

Apr
11
2019
Eileen Sutherland

Want to learn about straw-bale building? More news on the ESBG 2019

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… and a special offer for our readers! We hear from Eileen Sutherland of The School of Natural Building about the straw-bale building event of the year, happening for the first time in the UK this summer.

Read more …

Apr
4
2019
Joe Duirwyn

Hartwyn free natural building course: 2019 applications now open

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We hear from Joe Duirwyn of Hartwyn about a fantastic free natural building learning opportunity running from June to September 2019.

Read more …
Mar
31
2019
Paul Chatterton

Community-led housing – what’s different about mutual home ownership societies (MHOS): interview with Paul Chatterton of LILAC

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Today we’re talking with Paul Chatterton, of LILAC community in Leeds about community-led housing and mutual home ownership societies.

Read more …
Mar
21
2019
Sigi Koko

How to build a low-cost, high-performing living green roof

1

Sigi Koko of Down to Earth Designs shares her top tips for designing and building a low-cost, high-performing living green roof.

Read more …
Mar
12
2019
Eileen Sutherland

The European Straw Bale Gathering is coming to Yorkshire for 2019

1

The European Straw Bale Gathering is heading to the UK for the very first time in August 2019. Here to tell us more is Eileen Sutherland of The School of Natural Building.

Read more …
Mar
5
2019
Lauren Simpson

Want to be a Planning Manager with the Ecological Land Cooperative?

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Our friends at the ELC share news of an exciting job opportunity for a part-time Planning Manager. Over to Lauren Simpson to tell us more.

Read more …
Feb
22
2019
Rowland Keable

Interested in earth building? Come to EBUKI’s mini Clayfest 2019 in Wales!

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Rowland Keable of Earth Building UK and Ireland shares news of a mini but mighty Clayfest 2019 with the theme of building confidence in clay.

Read more …
Feb
19
2019
Sigi Koko

The benefits and challenges of natural paints with Sigi Koko

1

Rounding off Sigi Koko’s natural paint series is her overview of the pros, cons and important considerations of making non-toxic natural paints from the simplest of ingredients.

Read more …
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