Project details

Fernworthy Barns, Devon

Eco Renovation and Conservation, Devon

AK Architects were appointed for the eco renovation and conservation of an important Grade 2* listed building on Dartmoor, Devon, to provide a traditional and ecological conservation solution, whilst significantly improving the energy efficiency and environmental performance of the building.

The buildings history was recorded in the Domesday book dating back to before 1086. Later in the history, part of the main house was demolished under the order of the Parliamentarians following the English Civil War, leaving only one third of the original home, which was connected to an old thatched cow shed. It is the 1970’s converted cow shed which now forms the majority of the home, and formed the brief for a highly sensitive restoration and recording process of this important historical structure.

Working with a highly committed client and superb team of local craftsmen, the successfully completed eco renovation incorporated an insulated vaulted ceiling following the organic forms to the old barn with retention of the 600 year old rustic crook frame, bespoke oak windows and doors and re-thatched roof. The floor was completely replaced with an insulated screed of recycled brick with underfloor heating. Natural materials and traditional building methods were used such as Dartmoor sheepswool insulation, lime render and re-pointing and natural wood fibre insulation systems.

In addition to the improved thermal performance of the main building fabric, the site will be completely serviced via renewable technologies including, rainwater harvesting, photovoltaics, solar thermal and a bio mass boiler built in across the wider site infrastructure. The whole scheme is supported by an ambitions an holistic landscaping scheme including extensive native tree planting, natural wildflower meadow and permaculture pond systems for carp fish farming. All in all, a project that is truly sustainable nett gain approach to heritage, landscape, ecology and energy.