Green Building Store is now 21°

Meeting House Lane Passivhaus

Anne Thorne Architects have just completed a compact newbuild Passivhaus project in York. The project, built by local contractors Croft Farm Construction, is a finalist in the Urban category for UK Passivhaus Awards 2016.

21° collaborated closely with the project, providing: construction advice and training; PROGRESSION Passivhaus-certified windows; the PAUL Focus 200 MVHR heat recovery ventilation system; airtightness and insulation products.


The project is a 144m2 3 bed detached L-shaped house, tucked away between old and new houses in York. Overlooking was a major constraint in the conservation area site. The house is faced with York handmade bricks and corbelled brick reveals have been used to reduce overlooking on some of the elevations.

Construction advice

The client opted for brick and block cavity wall construction for the project and the project team benefited from Green Building Store’s experience in this area, building upon their experience of wide cavity wall masonry construction at the Denby Dale and Golcar projects. Construction details were discussed and agreed with 21° Director Bill Butcher, with a determination not to ‘reinvent the wheel’. Members of the construction team attended a training course at 21° to learn about the building method’s used at the UK’s first cavity wall Passivhaus at Denby Dale.

We took all our key staff and sub-contractors to Green Building Store to do their ‘Introduction to Passivhaus’ course as we felt that it was essential that everyone understood the ethos behind the project.

Phil Gledhall - Croft House Construction


PROGRESSION Passivhaus-certified windows with cork insulated frame and narrow sightlines were specified for the project. The PROGRESSION range has a whole window U value of 0.68 W/m2K and was chosen  because of GBS reliability as a supplier and commitment to responding to queries and resolving any problems over the longer term which might occur.

The PROGRESSION windows make a great contribution to the project. We’re particularly pleased by the way the windows sit – and look – in the beautiful brickwork.

Fran Bradshaw - Anne Thorne Architects


21°’s MVHR Design Service designed, supplied and commissioned the PAUL Focus 200 MVHR unit for the project, specified by the project’s Services Engineer Alan Clarke.

The MVHR system has worked without a hitch and is operating smoothly and quietly.. It’s really important when a client has never experienced permanent ventilation before, that it works well, is easy to use and is effectively inaudible.

Fran Bradshaw - Anne Thorne Architects

Friends staying comment on how evenly comfortable and un-stuffy the house feels. The second most common comment is disbelief that this can be achieved without a full central heating system, even when it’s freezing outside. I admit I was sceptical too…but this house has proved it convincingly for me, not just that Passivhaus design can reduce energy use but that it can contribute to a simple, low tech, well designed house that is a delight to live in.

Jenny Brierley - Client

Insulation & airtightness products

21° also supplied the following products for the project:

  • Contega SL tape, used around window reveals and between plaster coats
  • Tescon Vana airtightness tape, used around door installation detailing
  • Compacfoam rigid insulation, used to reduce thermal bridging on door thresholds
  • Orcon F adhesive and Tescon No 1 airtightness tape, used for general airtightness purposes.
As always, we have had the best design advice from 21°, and assistance in ordering and dealing with any problems, that anyone could wish for!

Fran Bradshaw - Anne Thorne Architects

Project details

Architect & Passivhaus Designer

Anne Thorne Architects


Croft Farm Construction

Services Engineer

Alan Clarke

Life changing homes