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Wilmcote House wins Constructing Excellence Sustainability Award

June 29, 2018


We are proud to announce that our Wilmcote House retrofit project for Portsmouth City Council was winner of the Sustainability Award at the Constructing Excellence SECBE Awards 2018 last night.

The sought-after Sustainability Award in the London and South East region was presented to ECD Architects on the 28th June at the annual awards dinner at The Royal Lancaster, London, where construction industry professionals waited with bated breath to learn the results following a thorough and robust judging process in 16 categories.

Wilmcote House is a leading example of a sustainable low energy refurbishment designed to meet the stringent EnerPHit standard, the refurbishment equivalent of Passivhaus. This 11-storey residential development in Portsmouth was built in 1968. The original structure comprised of large, poorly insulated concrete panels with precast concrete elements that significantly bridged the thermal envelope, leading to high heat losses, internal condensation risk, mould growth and low internal comfort. Portsmouth City Council’s business case identified that over 30 years, a deep, low energy refurbishment scheme was more economical than decanting, demolishing and rebuilding the existing 107 units. ECD Architects were commissioned to design and deliver a regeneration scheme with residents in occupation. The project team secured ECO funding and is the only UK case study for the PassivHaus Institute’s Europhit programme and the largest residential EnerPHit project delivered with residents in situ in the world.

“In this category we look for tangible improvements in performance achieved as sustainability is embedded in delivery” explains Jenny Stafford, Sustainability Consultant, Temple Group; lead judge and sponsor of the Sustainability Award.  “A flagship scheme, Wilmcote House provides a fantastic example of a sustainable low energy refurbishment and a national and international reference for delivering the stringent EnerPHit standard, the refurbishment equivalent of Passivhaus.”

The Constructing Excellence SECBE Awards are unique in their recognition of some of the best teams and organisations in the region and aim to inspire others to learn and benefit from their stories which are published in the Awards Brochure.  “The key actions they took, results achieved and lessons learned make an interesting read” says Derek Rees, Regional Director for Constructing Excellence.

James Traynor, Managing Director at ECD commented upon the success of Wilmcote House: “We are delighted with the continued achievements of Wilmcote House. This has been an incredibly challenging yet incredibly rewarding project for all involved. The design solution of retrofitting the homes to the Passivhaus EnerPHit standard is already improving the wellbeing of residents and reducing home energy usage. This transformation envisaged within our original design has been achieved through the hard work and determination of all involved but especially Portsmouth City Council. Regeneration with residents in-situ can be a complicated process but the results at Wilmcote House demonstrate the outstanding benefits that can be achieved. This has been a truly collaborative project involving the Council, the multi-disciplinary team – Keegans (quantity surveyors, principal designers and project managers), Wilde Carter Clack (structural engineers), the contractor Engie as well manufacturers such as Rockwool and academic partners including Southampton University, London School of Economics and the Passivhaus Institute.”

As a winner of the Constructing Excellence SECBE Awards, the project will be entered into the National Constructing Excellence Awards which take place on the 16th November 2018.