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Earth Friendly Home – an in ground house, off the grid

It’s the house that love built – Woodland Home was done by a man with the help of his father-in-law, a few good friends and some passersby who couldn’t help their curiosity at this spectacular sustainable design. “Being your own architect is a lot of fun and allows you to create and enjoy something which is part of you and the land rather than, at worst, a mass-produced box designed for maximum profit and convenience of the construction industry,” says Simon Dale, the brains behind this amazing, earth friendly home. “Building from natural materials does away with producers’ profits and the cocktail of carcinogenic poisons that fill most modern homes.” Four months and 4,000 man hours later, the job was complete. Woodland Home looks like something out of a fairytale. Built right into the land, Woodland House was dug into the hillside to decrease visual impact in its natural forested surroundings. Stone and mud from the excavation was reused for the home’s retaining walls and foundations. The home’s unique frame was built using oak “thinnings” (spare wood) collected from the surrounding woods. Straw bales installed in the floor, walls and roof provide effective and eco-friendly insulation. Inside, lime plaster was used on walls as a breathable and low-energy alternative to traditional cement. Dale used reclaimed wood for floors and fittings, while essentially everything else you see – from the window frames to the plumbing, wiring and even the fireplace – were rescued from trash piles. The home is heated by the wood-burning stove, utilizing a renewable resource that’s literally ripe for the picking at every turn. As for cooling, the fridge gets its chill from underground. Skylights allow for natural lighting, while solar panels in the roof serve to power the home off the grid. The home’s water supply comes from a nearby spring, and the house is also equipped with a greywater recycling system. Last but not least, the home is equipped with a compost toilet. This cool, contemporary house is lean, clean and Green through and through! Simon Dale.



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