AECB Wales Group Visit Retrofitted House and Extension

Meeting of AECB Wales Group to Gloesgerddyn, Powys

AECB members and guests recently visited Gloesgerddyn, a nearly completed retrofitted house and extension.  They were joined by;

  • The builder – Guy Walker of Builth Builders
  • The installers of the Biomass system and PVs – Guy Neale of
  • The architect and long standing AECB Member – Nick Salt
  • The Client – Anne Morgan

Nick gave a slide show showing the building work as it progressed. The building was not complete which was a bonus as it was useful to see the work in progress.

The house is situated in the village of Llandefaelog Fach, a few miles north of Brecon.  It was originally the small two-storey gatehouse to nearby Llandefaelog House, built during the 19th century in solid grey stone with a slate roof, onto which rendered block-work extension had been added in the 1990s.  Luckily the house had not been listed along with the nearby main house and stable block, which helped ease the planning situation.

Retrofitted House

Wales Group Visit 1The starting point of the design brief was to convert, retrofit and extend the gatehouse to provide a comfortable and convenient home for Anne and her ageing mother.  The solution reached was to add a generous and sympathetic two-storey extension, providing a 165% increase in floor area.  The new extension is timber-framed, with a rendered block-work external skin, a slated roof and good levels of insulation with Warmcell and Kingspan.  The walls and roof of the original house have also been retrofitted with internal insulated dry linings.  The new and existing floor slabs in both areas have also been well insulated.  New, high quality double-glazed windows and doors have been fitted into the whole building.  There are unexpectedly good and interesting views in most directions, including the distant Hay Bluff and Brecon Beacons. The lean-to Boiler Room on the back of the extension contains all the main heating equipment, plumbing and controls, including a Windhager biomass boiler, fed with wood pellets by air pressure from a  storage hopper below.  This is all very visible and accessible. and makes a good drying room and garden shed. The extended house is now heated by a combination of under-floor pipes, radiators and a central wood-burning stove.  PV panels cover most of one side of the extension roof and are completely hidden from the front elevation view.

The building work started in June 2015, and is expected to be completed during March 2016.