When innovative new house builder Christian Staunskjaer decided to try and build an ultra-low energy Passivhaus in The Surrey Hills, every consideration was made as to the carbon footprint of the building. From the materials used in its construction to the eventual running costs of the finished house, no stone was left unturned in the search for the most energy-efficient and lowest carbon options.
Passivhaus or ‘Passive House’ is the fastest-growing energy performance standard in the world with 30,000 buildings realised to date with the majority of those since the turn of the century. This robust approach to building design allows the designer to minimise the ‘Heating Demand’ of the building and heat can then be recovered and circulated by a Mechanical Ventilation and Heat Recovery (MVHR) unit.
The Passivhaus standard was developed in Germany in the early 1990s by Professors Bo Adamson of Sweden and Wolfgang Feist of Germany and the first dwellings to be completed to the Passivhaus Standard were constructed in Darmstadt in 1991.
As the developer, Low Energy Developments built the 4 bedroom house to strict Passivhaus standards and designed all the interiors for the project. The lower floors of the building used Wandsworth’s Classic Collection, featuring twin switched sockets and toggle light switches, in Satin Nickel to give a contemporary feel to the living areas. Upstairs, where the designs were more ornate, the Crystal Collection was used with toggle switches so as to show off the range of wallpapers from the UK’s Cole & Son and lighting by another UK manufacturer Jim Lawrence.
Likewise, Wandsworth’s accessories were chosen for the project as they are 100% manufactured and assembled in the UK and not imported from China like so many other options available. This ensured that the electrical accessories were sourced locally thus adding both luxury and quality to the project whist keeping the carbon footprint to a minimum.