Building with earth

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Building With Earth:

Whether constructing walls from mud, cob, or rammed earth, or utilising earth berms and green roofs to provide shelter, the earth provides a variety of opportunities to use the most natural of building materials.
Green roofs can give a high thermal mass as well as controlling rainwater run off more effectively and greening built surfaces.

Earth Sheltered Buildings:

  • British Earth Sheltering Association -a non-profit making organisation aiming to encourage the design and construction of Earth Sheltered Buildings in the UK.
  • Earth Hands and Houses -a non-profit organisation set up in 1997 with the vision to enable people to build their own shelter through a program of demonstration projects, workshops, presentations, and other services.
  • Earth House -Earth House is the hub from which to explore anything related to earth sheltered homes or underground living.
  • The Underground House -Helen and Phil Reddy's earth sheltered house in Cumbria, featured on grand Designs in 2003.

Rammed Earth:

  • Earth Structures -UK based firm specialising in stabilised rammed earth construction.
  • Ram Cast CIC -rammed earth projects from specialist Roland Keable -good database of past projects with photos and technical information.
  • Rammed Earth Works -US site from David Easton in California.
  • -courses on rammed earth on the Norfolk Broads by Michael Thompson, who is author of a ebook on the subject.

Cob and mud:

  • Back to Earth -based in Devon, Chris Brookman's company specialises in the new-build, repair and restoration of cob buildings throughout the South West of England.
  • Cob Block Company -dried, pre-shrunk blocks ready to lay and render with lime mortar, manufactured in Wellington Somerset.
  • Cob in Cornwall -website of Adam Weismann and Katy Bryce, ecologically concious builders based in Helston and specialising in cob construction.
  • Clayworks -suppliers of pigmented clay plasters from Cornwall in a range of pre-mixed natural colours that will really bring the natural world inside.
  • Devon Earth Building Association -formed in 1991 to sustain the traditional practice of building in 'cob' in the South-West of England, the Association both supports the conservation of existing cob buildings and encourages the use of cob for new building. Good list of links and other useful information.
  • Earthed -a group of artists and builders who create structures specialising in cob, roundpole timber frame, lime and stonework. They undertake private and funded projects, run educational workshops as well as renovation and repair.
  • JJ Sharpe -Devon based specialist suppliers and contractors for the repair and conservation of old buildings, and the longest established producers of lime products in Devon.
  • Kevin McCabe -Build Something Beautiful -earth and cob building specialists based in Ottery St Mary, East Devon.

See also Green Roofs


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Featured books:

The Rammed Earth House
David Easton and Cynthia Wright
Kindle edition
Price in UK pounds
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Rammed Earth Structures: A Code of Practice
Julian Keable and Rowland Keable
Price in UK pounds
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Planting Green Roofs and Living Walls
by Nigel Dunnett, Noel Kingsbury
Timber Press
Price in UK pounds
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Green Roofs: Ecological Design and Construction
William McDonough (Foreword)
Schiffer Publishing
Price in UK pounds
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