the first Certified Passivhaus in England, by Seymour-Smith Architectsthe AI PassivHaus

1st April 2009

Passivhaus blog manual guide

Les, Dale and Zip the site guard-dog take a well deserved break to admire the very large hole they have dug.




It's slowly but surely getting big enough to put a house in...

4th April 2009



The flat bit is the level of our terrace - although it will slope up a bit more gradually to the field level.




It's very odd being able to look up at the barn.  Not quite suspended in mid air yet, but not long to go now...




Still thinking of uses for all this steel afterwards - suggestions on a postcard please...




but we'll have no problem using up all of this fabulous stone that's being dug out of the ground...
 

9th April 2009



We're finally digging under the barn!




Gulp.  No sign of any movement yet - not that there's likely to be much at the gable ends with their incredibly strong trusses.  The long steel beams along the back wall may deflect a fair amount though (and the structural engineers are entirely confident that the wall above will be fine!)...




Robin switches to a smaller digger so that he doesn't have to keep worrying about the jib hitting the steel above.




It still seems very odd standing below and looking up at the barn...

11th April 2009



Yay!  Our barn is now floating in mid air...  piece of cake!




and here is the long-awaited (and ever so slightly fretted-about) moment of being able to stand three meters below the barn...

 

15th April 2009

Just an average day at the office for Robin and his team...



 


 

20th April 2009 



We're still getting used to this amazing floating barn...




The main slab area is now dug to more or less the right depth, and tomorrow, the site engineers are coming to set out the pad foundation positions.




The vivid oil seed rape has totally changed our surroundings - one of the joys of living in the countryside.

23rd April 2009



The column pad foundations have been marked out with some very hi-tech looking kit by Mike of Storm Geomatics, and it's great to, for the first time, see the physical size of the building marked out.




So, now yet more digging of holes...
 

28th April 2009



... and filling them with concrete.  But not just any old concrete - this is Aggregate Industries' concrete, with recycled aggregate and pulverised fly ash / ground granulated blast furnace slag as cement replacement...




Les and Robin carefully check and adjust the levels.  It's important to get this right because the precast concrete columns will bolt onto these pads - and their heights are most definitely not adjustable.
 

29th April 2009



With the foundation pads now finished, the drainage points have been set-out, ready for yet more digging.




Zip double-checks that all the dimensions are accurate...  (and before anyone asks, you can't get hard hats for dogs)