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Malcolm writes :
Built in the seventies, and occupied by the first owner, who made few changes, until Jude and I bought it in 2007. Poorly insulated, and standing in an exposed location the house was ripe for modification, but more than that, I’ve been reflecting recently on the changes over the last eleven years: Yes the house was improved, with better thermal insulation, the addition of a woodburner, rainwater harvesting, solar thermal and PV panels, but with permaculture in mind, the location was important, as were the growing beds, and more recently the re-wilding, encouraging native plants and wildlife now that our grandchildren no longer need the lawn.
My electric car charges largely from our own PV solar panels. Indeed the generation has been so successful that I’ve removed the wet/gas heating system, installed electric heaters, and even with this and charging the car the house is relatively energy neutral..
Update September 2022: This year I have had external thermal insulation fitted to reduce heat loss, and reduce moisture penetration. A balcony has also been constructed to shade south facing rooms. Both have improved the performance of the house, and ultimately that is what I’ve been aiming for. Now working to re-instate the rainwater harvesting which was disconnected for the insulation work.