The development at Haverhill was to some degree an experimental project from the outset and intended to allow comparison to be made between 'hemp' houses and those of traditional construction.
With the growing interest in innovation and need for sustainable construction, a number of parties showed interest or provided support for this study including: Suffolk Housing Society, St Edmundsbury Borough Council, The Housing Corporation, HAPM, Chenevotte Habitat (a French hemp producer), and HL2 ( the only UK producer of hydraulic lime). The research into the two building methods has been conducted by the Building Research Establishment (BRE) paid for in part by a £60,000 Innovation and Good Practice grant from the Housing Corporation.
The houses were built for Suffolk Housing Society as part of a social housing development.
The scheme involved the construction of eighteen dwellings 16 of which were built using conventional construction methods and materials but two of which were of a form of construction referred to as Hemp.
The report into this project has now been published, and can be viewed here (filesize 976k)
[revised version added 29/10/2002]
A second report into this project has now been published, using thermography to compare the thermal performace of the 'hemp houses' with those of traditional masonry construction. View the 2nd report here (300k PDF file)
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