This is Aalto. A Professional theme for
architects, construction and interior designers

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Award winning RIBA Chartered Architects passionate about designing beautiful, usable buildings, places and spaces since 1966

Call us on 01664 563 288


To design a ground-breaking, boundary pushing family home based on our client’s desire to create a low-carbon house using reclaimed and reused materials. Our clients were keen to take a very “hands on” approach and wanted to ‘self-build’.  Their much-loved home now sits in the glorious Leicestershire countryside on a family farm. An outstanding example of an innovative property with sustainable credentials. 


  • Location: Leicestershire
  • Sector: Bespoke new build / Eco house
  • Client: Private Client

A ground breaking and innovative, low-carbon, ‘eco' self-build. The sustainable home has become a much loved, modest family home.

Project - Strawberry Farm


The unused land was in a rural setting, meaning local planners actively protect the area from any form of development. There are exceptions though under what is known as ‘Paragraph 79’ of the National Planning Policy Framework. To secure permission for a ‘Paragraph 79 house’ we had to prove it was ‘“truly outstanding or innovative, reflecting the highest standards in architecture, and would help to raise standards of design more generally in rural areas”, as outlined in the policy.  

Working closely with the local planning authorities, we designed a concept that was exceptional and innovative”. The Local Authority and the Council ensured the design met the strict sustainable requirements and after much hard work, we secured permission for our client to go ahead and build their dream home on their family farm. This was the first “Paragraph 79” house approved by Melton Borough Council. 

As a ‘self-build’ and truly experimental project, we partnered with our client and guided them on the best way to meet building regulations using reclaimed materials. For example, the client didn’t want to use concrete. Instead the foundations were formed from recycled car tyres filled with compacted earth. The inner walls were constructed from straw bales and the outer roof is a reused farm building frame. 

We worked closely with specialist consultants to demonstrate that the design achieved a carbon neutral rating.  

Project - Strawberry Farm


  • Architects: HSSP
  • Engineers: Elliot Wood 
  • Principle Contractor: Client