Carbon neutral cork house, Berkshire, UK

An innovative new home in Berkshire, United Kingdom, has been built mainly out of cork. This is a very unconventional method of building, yet one that is very sustainable. The residential home is carbon-neutral and has already won the 2019 Stephen Lawrence Prize, which recognises experimental architecture with a construction budget of under £1 million. As well as winning the Wood Awards 2019 and shortlisted for several other awards.

Matthew Barnett Howland was the architect behind this home. They had sustainability at the forefront of their design and therefore specified materials accredited as environmentally friendly, including Accoya wood window and door frames, as well as the outdoor steps. These elements were made by joinery manufacturer, Whyte & Wood.  Accoya was further used for the main ground floor beams, external cladding, eaves and beam and lintels externally and internally in the roof, all of which were fixed into place by the building contractor.

Whyte & Wood have used Accoya numerous times before on other projects. They believe Accoya is very easy to work with and highlighted that it requires “minimal sanding, easy to coat and machine”. For this particular project, completed in summer 2019, they stained the Accoya wood using Sikkens water based translucent stain in black.

ARCHITECT: Matthew Barnett Howland with Dido Milne (CSK Architects) and Oliver Wilton

MANUFACTURER: Whyte & Wood

STRUCTURAL AND FIRE ENGINEERING: Arup

TIMBER SUPPLIER: NFP Europe

Photos © David Grandorge

Accoya windows, doors, steps and more at the carbon neutral Cork House in Berkshire, UK
Accoya windows, doors, steps and more at the carbon neutral Cork House in Berkshire, UK