Brian Waite's strawbalehouseI am delighted to announce we are working with Brian Waite, designer of 'strawbalehouse', on making this fantastic cruck frame design available to those who would like to build it.

Every now and again a building design really catches your eye and imagination - and Brian's design is as functional as it is good looking.  It's an offering that puts an affordable, highly insulated and environmentally-friendly building within the reach of self-builders.

Cruck frames have a long history in the UK and this wonderfully modern take on the design allows the potential owner to choose any length and widths from 5m-9m, then come up with all sorts of internal configurations to best fit their needs.

For example, two generous floors can maximise floor space, or a mezzanine approach can allow for a full height ground floor area where desired.  Alternatively, the entire internal space can be left open at full height - ideal, perhaps, for a community space like a village hall etc.

Our approach is to give potential builders as little or as much assistance as they need.  We can, for example, deliver you the basic 'kit', allowing you to work your own way through the rest of the designing, planning and building - or we can give you as much help as you like with these aspects too, from helpful advice on the end of a phone, right through to being on site with you for training or to help out with construction.

The crucks themselves sit upon a plinth wall on each side and are made from two curved timber I-joists.  Each cruck is light enough to raise into position using people rather than machines, and once these are temporarily secured, straw bales are trimmed and loaded between each one, all the way up to the ridge.  We are also working on another variation that uses recycled newspaper insulation instead of straw.

We are currently working on beam production and costings for the design and hope to be able to publish details very soon.  In the meantime, if you are interested in this design please get in touch or sign up to our newsletter (box on the right), so we can update you as soon as we have more information.

Acorn Printing

T-shirt proof
T-shirt proof

When looking for promotional materials for the business I am keen to source from businesses that have a good ethical stance along with excellent service. Before we attended the Stock Gaylard Oak Fair in August I decided we should get some T-shirts printed and managed to find Acorn Printing, who are based in Coventry. They have a detailed ethical policy and a great range of organic and fair-trade shirts, which is exactly what we wanted.

It was an absolute pleasure dealing with Tracy and the rest of the team. They helped with all my queries and provided a proof before printing so I could be sure everything was correct. They also processed and delivered my order in a very timely fashion. I highly recommend them!

You can see more information about our order with them on their website, here.