The optimism communicated by much of the book is infectious. Its compelling arguments for a brighter future almost help you to forget chapter one’s alarming summary of how it will take nothing less than significant action to avoid reaching a tipping point for the climate in 20 or 30 years.Read More
Why can’t I do that?
Maybe because I’m not interested in fine art and haven’t held a paintbrush since finishing a mediocre watercolour of an Italian villa for a school art exam when I was 14?
Why do I do this to myself?Read More
People are fallible. Daily life and unexpected changes in routine get in the way. We put things off for a minute, and a minute turns into an hour or two or more. We forget to open windows, or we open them and we forget to close them again. We can learn to use an overly-complicated letterbox, but we struggle to operate our buildings properly.Read More
It's perfectly possible to construct buildings resilient enough to face this oncoming challenge, but the sad truth is that few are. There shouldn't be an excuse, but that's a post for another time. The even greater challenge is retrofitting existing buildings in a sensitive and holistic way to provide them with that resiliency.Read More
The development of homes from single-roomed halls in which every household activity took place to multi-roomed houses is particularly fascinating. In the larger houses of the very wealthy, kitchens and dining rooms would be so far apart that one stately home owner resorted to installing a railway in his property in an effort to deliver food to the table while it was still warm.Read More
After reviewing ecobuild in issue 17 - and noting a lot of school groups in attendance, as well as several stands with confusing technical detail - this month I decided to look at whether building physics and performance would be a useful addition to the school curriculum.Read More
Our social groups should have a positive effect, not hold us back. We need to share our stories because we are individual. One of the big messages of Man Up is that we share experiences, not opinions. Bottling things up and being someone we’re not is unhealthy. We need to laugh and cry and feel things because we are human beings.Read More
Also in issue 17, I take a look at the language of insulation, and ask whether the traditional model of manufacturers delivering CPD presentations really works. These topics never go out of fashion, and are ones I'd particularly like to encourage feedback on, from all readers.Read More
Sky-high land prices and poor quality existing building stock make it difficult for anybody to find healthy, comfortable and affordable places to live. For people in the creative industries, finding both places to live and studios or performance spaces that are fit for purpose is particularly difficult.Read More
It should be second nature to check the age of 'news' these days, but I was too interested in the subject matter to immediately pay attention to the date of publication. As a piece on how buildings fail their users, it felt every bit a story made in 2018. To discover that it was actually written four and half years ago only served to show that performance gaps have been a problem for a long time, and lessons are slow in being learned.Read More