Low Carbon Sheppey

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The project involves 2 houses in Queenborough and Rushenden on the Isle of Sheppey in Kent, one a mid terrace 1974 built infill property, the other a post war semi detached house. The aim is to introduce technologies that are currently estimated to reduce energy demands and carbon emissions by well over 80% in each case. The technologies used for this vary by household. One will have extensive insulation, micro CHP, PV and solar thermal panels, the other will be the same but will use a biomass pellet stove instead of the CHP. We are overcoming the additional challenge of one of the properties already having tenants, and have found various solutions to work around that issue.

Retrofit for the future ZA571W
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Low Carbon Sheppey : Project images

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CO2 emissionsPrimary energy requirement
Energy target
Retrofit for the Future

Energy and fuel use

Fuel use by type
Primary energy requirement
CO2 emissions

Measured data from renewable generation is not yet available.

Fuel use

Electricity use 3000 kWh/yr 1007 kWh/yr -
Natural gas use14000 kWh/yr 6872 kWh/yr -
Oil use- - -
LPG use- - -
Wood use- - -
Other Fuel - - -
Primary energy requirement 319 kWh/m².yr 141 kWh/m².yr -
Annual CO₂ emissions 63 kg CO₂/m².yr 27 kg CO₂/m².yr -
Annual space heat demand - 49 kWh/m².yr -

Renewable energy

Electricity generationForecastMeasured
PV1333 kWh/yr -
Micro CHP--
Electricity consumed by generation --
Primary energy requirement
offset by renewable generation
96 kWh/m².yr -
Annual CO₂ emissions
offset by renewable generation
16 kg CO₂/m².yr -

Calculation and targets

Whole house energy calculation method SAP
Other whole house calculation method-
Energy target Retrofit for the Future
Other energy targets-
Forecast heating load 3.27 W/m² demand


Pre-development air permeability test--
Final air permeability test15 November 20104.7m³/m².hr @ 50 Pascals

Project description

Start date01 February 2010
Occupation date31 May 2010
Location Queenborough and Rushenden Kent  England
Build typeRefurbishment
Building sectorPublic Residential
Property typeMid Terrace
Construction typeMasonry Cavity
Other construction typeUnfilled cavity
Party wall constructionMasonry cavity
Floor area 74
Floor area calculation method Actual Floor Area (SAP)
Building certification

Project Team

OrganisationBBP Regeneration
Project lead personBBP Regeneration
Landlord or ClientAmicus Horizon
Mechanical & electrical consultant Swale Heating
Energy consultantDaedalus Environmental Limited
Structural engineer
Quantity surveyorWT Partnership
ContractorSwale Heating

Design strategies

Planned occupancyQueenborough - currently a void, likely to be a 4 person family, at least 3 of whom out to work/school on weekdays. Rushenden - single mum with three children. Mother at home throughout the week, children all at school / nursery.
Space heating strategyQueenborough - provided using a Baxi Ecogen micro CHP system fed using the gas network. Heat will be distributed using radiators, and controlled using programmer, thermostats and TRVs. Given expected heat loss, it is anticipated that when operating, CHP will be producing electricity (1kWe/6kWth). Rushenden - provided using a biomass pellet stove with integral boiler. This replaces the existing back boiler, and will provide very low carbon heat throughout the property using radiators. The system will be controlled using an innovative control system called Wattbox, which learns user occupancy patterns and heating needs.
Water heating strategyIn both properties this will be provided by solar thermal systems with back up provided by the main heating systems described above. There will be no electrical resistance back up.
Fuel strategyQueenborough - mains gas and electricity, but vast majority of electricity should be generated by the property. Rushenden - biomass pellets and electricity.
Renewable energy strategyEach property will be supplied with 4.64m2 of solar thermal panels providing renewable heat. Each will also have 1.6kW of PV panels to provide electricity. Renewable heat will also be provided to the Manor Road property using biomass pellets.
Passive Solar strategyQueenborough - the rear of the property faces due south. Window sizes cannot be optimised and the existing window sizes will remain. Rushenden - rear faces 30 degrees from south towards the east. Therefore will benefit from solar gain without excessive overheating faced by south west - west facing properties. Especially important as there is already a large area of glazing on this south east facade.
Space cooling strategyNatural ventilation for most of the cooling season, with both properties able to benefit from cross ventilation. MVHR will be provided into both properties, with additional purging as required during periods of excessive heat.
Daylighting strategyThe average daylight factors in both kitchens is already at over 2%, and living rooms and dining rooms over 1.5%. Further daylighting improvement is somewhat hampered by a requirement to maintain window sizes in the untenanted property as it is located in a conservation area. The Manor Road property, which is tenanted, will also maintain its current window shapes and sizes. All living spaces in both properties have a view of the sky over 80% of the floor area.
Ventilation strategyIn the winter, ventilation will be provided by an Appendix Q rated MVHR system, with additional boost facilities to wet rooms / kitchen. Cross ventilation in the summer will be possible through openable windows.
Airtightness strategy #NAME?
Strategy for minimising thermal bridges #NAME?
Modelling strategyThe modelling was undertaken using Elmhurst Energy Systems SAP Modelling software for both properties.
Insulation strategyRushenden - Application of external insulation to filled cavity wall to achieve a U-value of 0.2W/m2K - Additional mineral wool insulation across joists to achieve roof U-value of 0.1W/m2K - 10mm Ground floor Spacetherm blanket to ground floor to improve U-value from 1.5 to 0.4W/m2K - All glazing to achieve U-value of 1.1W/m2K Queenborough - As above but without external wall insulation and instead internal wall insulation to achieve U-value of 0.25W/m2K
Other relevant retrofit strategiesOne of the properties is currently untenanted, the other has tenants. We are going to carry out the works with the tenants in situ to demonstrate how our approach can be much more useful in wider retrofit situations, where it will not always be possible to decant residents. This therefore will require no temporary re-housing costs. We will also be providing full and continued support to residents of both properties once retrofitting is complete, to deal with any issues and problems immediately. We will also be encouraging and assisting with other non-building related low carbon living issues, including 'growing your own' food, and other such lifestyle changes.
Contextual informationThis project is an initial test case for a wider retrofit of 1500 homes in Queenborough and Rushenden. Should this project be successful, then we will roll out these solutions, or variations of them, into this number of properties over the next 5-10 years. The reasons why this community has been chosen for this pilot are many. Firstly, as a community in the lowest decile of the population, with many people claiming benefits and unemployment rife, there is extensive fuel poverty in the area, with many chronic health problems too. Furthermore, a recently confirmed masterplan for 2000 new homes did not include the improvement of existing properties to bring them up to the same standard, and therefore it was felt they should be addressed too.

Building services

OccupancyManor Road: 1 adult, 3 childrenHigh Street: 2 adults, 2 children
Space heatingSee H&S file attached to this DB entry
Hot waterSee H&S file attached to this DB entry
VentilationSee H&S file attached to this DB entry
ControlsSee H&S file attached to this DB entry
CookingSee H&S file attached to this DB entry
LightingSee H&S file attached to this DB entry
AppliancesSee H&S file attached to this DB entry
Renewable energy generation systemSee H&S file attached to this DB entry
Strategy for minimising thermal bridgesAs per the design stage

Building construction

Storeys 2
Volume -
Thermal fabric area -
Roof description 400mm mineral wool blanket laid between and across joists.
Roof U-value 0.10 W/m² K
Walls description High Street: External brick - filled cavity - brick - Kingspan K17 insulated board - plaster skim - paintManor Road: External render - Kingspan K5 60mm EWB system - brick - filled cavity - brick - plaster - paint
Walls U-value 0.25 W/m² K
Party walls description Brick - cavity - brick
Party walls U-value 0.00 W/m² K
Floor description Concrete slab - Spacetherm C flooring laminate incorporating 18mm V313 grade chipboard and 10mm Spacetherm blanket - floor covering
Floor U-value 0.46 W/m² K
Glazed doors description 2No. UPVC, partially glazed external doors
Glazed doors U-value 0.80 W/m² K installed
Opaque doors description
Opaque doors U-value 0.00 W/m² K -
Windows description UPVC, double glazed, argon filled units
Windows U-value 1.10 W/m² K -
Windows energy transmittance (G-value) -
Windows light transmittance -
Rooflights description
Rooflights light transmittance -
Rooflights U-value 0.00 W/m² K

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