Affordable sustainability

Rehau’s Agila doors have been installed in 12 affordable homes in Shropshire to provide a warm welcome to Housing Association tenants moving into the flagship Passivhaus development in Much Wenlock.

The Callaughtons Ash scheme has been built on behalf of South Shropshire Housing Association for tenants with a local connection to the town. The sustainable scheme was designed by Architype, an architecture firm based in Hereford, which has been working at the forefront of sustainability for many years. The company works on projects across the country and is a specialist in residential and commercial Passivhaus projects.

Paul Neep, associate at Architype said: “South Shropshire Housing Association was looking to deliver a new housing scheme that would provide good quality, sustainable homes for local people and help eradicate fuel poverty. To do this, they wanted to go beyond fitting high efficiency products in a standard home; they wanted homes which would work in harmony with their surroundings, so they would need less mechanical heating, cooling and lighting and therefore be more cost effective to run for their low-income tenants.”

The design process started in 2015, in close consultation with local residents about the location of the scheme and the design of the Housing Association homes. Architype was keen to use a natural palette of materials for the timber framed houses, so the development would blend with its surroundings, and to use locally sourced, sustainable products where possible.

Paul said: “Finding doors for the project proved to be quite a challenge. To achieve the Passivhaus standard, we needed doors that had a triple glazed panel for maximum energy efficiency, but more importantly we needed a door which would meet the rigorous threshold criteria. We spoke to Rehau about the Agila doors and were really pleased with the offer. The doors would meet the Passivhaus specification with ease, plus they were more attractive than the door we had been looking to use, which was a bonus.”

In total, 24 Agila Passivhaus doors were manufactured for the Much Wenlock project by Rehau authorised partner, GRM. Based on the Geneo system, the doors can achieve a possible U-value of 0.7W/m2K, ensuring they meet the high efficiency standards demanded by the Passivhaus Trust.

Malcolm Taylor, product manager at Rehau, said: “As a company with German heritage and influence, the Passivhaus concept is something that we were always destined to embrace. We have a market-leading range of door and window systems approved for Passivhaus builds and will continue to develop new energy and resource efficient solutions for customers who want to maximise the sustainability of their buildings without compromising on style or functionality.”