Green Build Hub – Top Facts

Our latest video showing an overview of the completed Green Build Hub, demonstrating the quality of construction and local sustainable materials used. Includes some of the installed technologies and systems on show within the Hub. A huge thank you to our 50 plus collaborators who have helped Cornwall Sustainable Building Trust achieve this outstanding building in Cornwall.

Green Build Hub Practical Completion

CSBT is delighted to announce that Practical Completion of the Green Build Hub at the Eden Project was achieved on Tuesday 28th July and we have moved into our new office. We now have until our planned launch in late September to co-ordinate our future programme of activity and to develop the interpretation scheme and monitoring installations to tell the story of the build and to showcase the collaborative partnerships involved in delivering this wonderful new BREEAM Outstanding building.

The Interreg IVA Shadow Project and the Green Build Hub


CSBT (Cornwall Sustainable Building Trust) was established in November 2002 by Paul Bright, the current Chief Executive Officer.   CSBT was homeless when it was established, but has received many generous donations of accommodation over the years:

  • Eden Project – our first home, a Portakabin at a local nursery
  • Camborne and Redruth Urban Regeneration Company – a redundant tin mine
  • Cornwall Council – a redundant school
  • Imerys Minerals – redundant industrial offices

During this time, the Trust successfully gained a series of European Social Fund and other supporting funds to train thousands of individuals and hundreds of companies in Sustainable Construction and Development principles.  It also ran a series of conference and exhibitions for the growing fraternity of companies that it had trained – latterly in a series of events named Green Build Cornwall.  These events were based at the Eden Project in St Austell and Heartlands in Redruth and were well attended and received by participants; so much so that there was a growing demand for a permanent exhibition and dissemination venue.

In November 2011 this culminated in 150 delegates attending a supper event at the Eden Project where the development that has become the Green Build Hub (GBH) was initiated.

Four years on in the summer of 2015 the GBH Project will be completed.   All manner of support has helped to bring this much needed facility to completion.   Much of this support has been given as donated time and contributions.  However 75% of the net building cost (£1.4M) i.e. £1.1M has been granted by ERDF with the balance funded by CSBT’s finance.

The GBH is a sustainable construction Research and Development Living Laboratory designed to install, test and performance monitor building components, systems and structural elements. The ERDF funding was to complete the building and did not include monitoring equipment and the means to disseminate the data.  Much of the expertise and delicate sensors have been provided by a range of CSBT’s collaborators at or below cost price, representing a shared understanding of the value and need for this data to be widely available.

Input of the Shadow Project:    

In 2012 CSBT was invited to join an Interreg IVA Cross Channel project called LIBNAM for Low Impact Buildings using Natural Materials, indeed the GBH is an example of this type of building.  Following this first Interreg project CSBT was asked to lead a larger consolidation project with 9 cross channel partners known as ECOBEE for Eco Building and Energy Efficiency.

7 Vents

shadow logo


One of our partners then asked us to join a small project to study and understand the embodied energy and water both in our construction and use of GBH. This project also supported by Interreg IVA became known as The Shadow Project. Lead partners, Les 7 Vents du Cotentin, worked with us to model our building’s embodied energy and water and to compare UK’s BREEAM rating system with France’s HQEThanks to this initiative CSBT has been able to work with our volunteers and collaborators to install monitoring systems.

Monitoring systems produce performance data, which needs to be interpreted and explained to potential users and beneficiaries. The Shadow Project also has a deliverable target of a project leaflet to explain the outcomes of the funding support. So it was decided to utilise this funding to design a SMART devise Application (APP) that visitors to GBH could download and use to tour the building and assimilate performance data and interpretation.  This will be achieved using Bluetooth nodes at points linked to the performance sensors around the building. It is believed that this form of interpretation is truly innovative and will contribute to a new way of understanding energy in buildings.  It is also hoped to develop this method in future for Shadow Project’s lead partner, Les 7 Vents du Cotentin, to use in their own retrofit building RENO3 and to further develop in their community energy outreach programmes.

ERDF Logo Landscape Colour JPEG


Green Build Hub

April 2015 Progress Update

The Green Build Hub is well on the way to completion now with the local cedar cladding completed, floor insulation and under floor heating laid, monitoring sensors installed and the Cornish rockers installed. The design team are now discussing final finishes such as floor finishes and colours in partnership with Falmouth University Interior design and Sustainable Product design students.

The following month the scaffolding is due to come down to uncover the beautiful Green Build Hub.We will be capturing this on timelapse camera and film.

Top Ten Reasons to visit Green Build Hub

The Home for Sustainable Construction in Cornwall


The Green Build Hub is CSBT’s new base at the Eden Project. This innovative BREEAM Outstanding building and will be open for business in summer 2015 and offers a range of exciting opportunities:
• A living laboratory where eco-building products will be installed, tested and monitored to produce objective performance data in a real building setting
• A training centre and a future base for degree courses in partnership with the Eden Project and others
• Encouraging inward investment by specialist green building and renewable energy suppliers by enabling them to showcase and test innovative products with-in the building
• Open to the public and Eden visitors showcasing the latest innovations in green building
• Available for hire as a conference and training space.

March 2015 Progress Update

Progress update on the Green Build Hub, M&E installation started onsite, Rationel timber framed triple glazed windows delivered to site, students and training taking place in the hub already and the revealing of the large space.

Its been a very busy month for our contractors and progress is moving quickly, the walls are now lined with Fermacell board and have been dry lined ready for painting and our surface fixed M&E installation. The internal scaffolding has been taking down to free up space to work in the main room and the external cedar cladding is half way complete.

 Roof Stubs installed and Resitrix roof covering complete 

The new office for CSBT taking shape

CSBT attend Hoare Lea Sustainability Workshop

Nicole from CSBT had a very interesting visit to the offices of Hoare Lea in Plymouth on Thursday 12th February to attend a Sustainability Workshop. Hoare Lea are consulting engineers specialising in Mechanical and Electrical areas of construction, and are working with CSBT on the Green Build Hub.

The workshop was presented by Ashley Bateson, Partner at the firm and responsible for their sustainability division.

Issues covered included the change in Part L of the Building Regulations in the UK (which refers to the conservation of heat and power in a building), BREEAM 2014 updates, carbon offsetting of construction projects and the ‘soft landings’ approach to handover of buildings on completion.

The 2013 updates to Part L of the building regs were implemented in 2014 and aim to reduce CO2 emissions in residential properties by 6% and 9% in commercial on previous standards

Fuel emissions factors have been changed – see slide below


BREAM 2014 updates: some headlines for new construction projects:

  • Credits for a building’s adaptability to climate change
  • Sustainable procurement – responsible sourcing of materials
  • Sustainability Champion
  • Buildings over 1,000 m² required to have an appropriate energy monitoring and management system and smaller ones to have suitable meter outputs.
  • Passive design analysis added
  • Designing for durability and resilience now an added factor

A BREEAM Excellent rating in 2011 would have to score 75.28% but in 2014 this was reduced to 70.87%.

For rural areas there has been a relaxing of the cycle storage requirements – by 50% if 10 miles from an urban area (if 20 miles, reduced by 70% and 30 miles, reduced by 90%).

There is also now less emphasis on low carbon technologies to score points and more emphasis on low carbon design.

February 2015 Progress Update

Progress update on the Green Build Hub, Scaffolding finished, Roof watertight, Wall sensors installed and a site visit from Nick Boles MP, its all go!

Insulation has arrived on-site ready for installation to help the Green Build Hub reach its U-values and BREEAM credits.

We are launching our fit-out competition for the Green Build Hub very soon.

We are still open to collaborators and supporters to join us here at CSBT please let us know if you would like to be involved.


Thermal Imaging & Air-tightness Presentation and Demonstration

Advantages of using Thermal imaging in association with air-tightness

Rachel Simpkins from South West Air Energy & director of Sustain Cornwall will be sharing the advantages of thermal imaging assessments and air-tightness of buildings.

Jason Jarvis a chartered architect, board trustee of CSBT & director of Sustain Cornwall has deigned and built ‘Hillstone’. He scooped Highly Commended in the sustainability at the Natural Stone Awards 2014, and will opening up his home for this event. Jason will be presenting his design and actual working challenges of achieving air-tightness and thermal performance.


A: Air-tightness theory versus actual
B: Benefits and use of thermal imaging
C: Live demonstration – Hillstone will be the test property using air test equipment
& thermal imaging camera

For a printable version please click here


· Venue: Hillstone, Chapel Lane, Tregrehan Mills, St Austell PL25 3TH
· Date: 10th March 2015
· Time: 9:00am – 11:30am
· Parking: No on-site parking
· Refreshments
· Costs:
£75.00 for non members
£50.00 for members

If you would like to book your place or have any questions please phone 01726 810241 or contact colin@csbt.org.uk

January 2015 Progress Update

Things are moving very quickly here at the Green Build Hub site at the moment. The roof glulam beams are now on with the plywood roof decked and the concrete stairs have been installed. The scaffolding is just about keeping up with the build and is nearly complete.

The contractors have been battling the weather but now the roof is on and the scaffold covered in we hope to be more resilient to the weather. We are on schedule and have had several college students onsite asking questions and learning from a good exemplar project.

We are planning to install some monitoring equipment very soon onsite to start gathering data before the build is complete, this will allow us to test our analytics and data collection methodology.


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