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Real-life Retrofit: Case studies – 2. Comfort Catapult: Retrofitting a 200-year-old semi to modern building performance standards – Online

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The second in our series of three events looking at challenges and solutions within different retrofit case studies


Real-life Retrofit: Case studies

The built environment is a major contributor to the environmental pressures our world is facing. Rather than demolishing existing buildings, retrofitting of existing buildings can play a crucial part in meeting net-zero carbon targets. Retrofit involves modifications to existing buildings that will improve energy efficiency or decrease energy demand.

In this online event series we have documented three different retrofit case studies in the Bristol area, each building with a unique history and retrofit plan. Working with contractors trained under our Futureproof programme, we focus upon retrofit in real life to show the challenges and solutions in upgrading the performance of older buildings.

Session #2: Comfort Catapult: Retrofitting a 200-year-old semi to modern building performance standards

When a damp bathroom raised the alarm for client Jayne, she contacted Futureproof in Bristol for help and found contractors ECO-DC. From there a retrofit plan for Jayne’s 200-year-old semi-detached home in Bristol started to form to include upgrades in airtightness, insulation and ventilation.

EWI, roof insulation, breathable lime plaster, a DCV ventilation system, triple glazing and a consistent approach to airtightness throughout the property have all contributed to an energy-efficient and comfortable home for Jayne and her family.

Learn more with us as we invite the contractor, his client, the architect and the air leakage specialist to tell us about the project:

  • Mike Neate of Eco-DC brings passion and a wealth of experience in low-carbon building, Passivhaus and EnerPHit as the main contractor on this project. He'll discuss the realities of retrofitting historic buildings such as this home and the creative approaches taken to counter some of the issues that arose during the project. 
  • Julia Bennett is an architect specialising in low carbon building, natural materials, building physics, retrofit and Passivhaus. She'll outline the methodologies, challenges and solutions in bringing the home up to modern building performance standards. 
  • Paul Jennings of Aldas, an Air Leakage Specialist who worked on the project, will be explaining the airtightness and comfort improvements made and how these were measured using specialist techniques and equipment. 


£25 Green Register members / £35 Non-members

Special offers

  • Book 3 places for the price of 2 - when registering enter discount code: 342

Each event can be attended as a stand alone session, or if attending the whole series they will complement each other.

What did our delegates say about the first event in the series?

"Real and relatable... there is so much talk about sustainability - it is really refreshing to see real examples. It is too easy to just say 'we need to insulate our homes' however it is not easy to do so I was interested to see how they did it."

"Excellent and frank insight from the design and construction teams"

"Very informative on assessments, detailing and products. Nice to see it from different perspectives, ie architect, SE and builder."

"A fantastic case study!"

Speaker Profiles

Julia Bennett

Julia is a low carbon Architect with over 30 years of experience in residential developments, community and charity projects, schools and special schools, master-planning, and heritage, conservation and listed buildings in both new-build and retrofit projects.

She trained as a Passivhaus Designer 10 years ago and works with Passivhaus and AECB Building and Retrofit Standards, using Passivhaus Planning Package (PHPP) and building physics principles to model each project  to give Clients informed comfort, energy and carbon options for their project decisions.

Julia set up her own practice in 2018, now based in the beautiful setting of Batsford Arboretum in the Cotswolds, delivering architectural work focused on natural materials and integrated sustainable design.

She is a founder member of a small collective called Cotswold Green Homes created in 2021 to allow Clients to come to one place to find experienced low carbon architectural services, renewable heating, solar and electrical specialists, and builders for increased quality and long-term building performance.

She is a Trustee of both the AECB, Association of Environment Conscious Building and SBUK, Strawbale Building UK and was involved in writing a strawbale construction technical guide for UK professionals with SNaB, School for Natural Building.

In 2022 she will be extending her passion for training and building skills by working to develop new areas of technical training events with The Green Register.


Paul Jennings

Paul Jennings of Aldas is the most experienced airtightness tester and consultant in the UK, with over 30 years’ experience. He has presented at numerous AECB and Passivhaus conferences in the UK and overseas.  Paul has been involved in most UK PassivHaus projects to date in one or more capacities.

These schemes include:

  • the first UK certified domestic and non-domestic PH projects in Machynlleth, both built by John Williamson, initially tested in 2008 and then retested after a decade of operation in 2018
  • the Erneley Close (Manchester), Wilmcote House (Portsmouth) and Carlton Chapel House (North London) EnerPHit block refurbishment projects
  • the Agar Grove area regeneration scheme in Camden, where neglected 60’s social housing will ultimately be replaced by over 500 newbuild PH units
  • the Exeter Passivhaus swimming pool and leisure centre, currently nearing completion
  • numerous individual newbuild custom- and self-build Passivhaus schemes

Paul is an experienced trainer and originated the “Airtightness Champion” concept, as well delivering numerous on-site trainings and many CPD seminars to architects and builders. He developed the 12 Steps to Airtightness approach to enable UK contractors to reliably deliver airtightness in Passivhaus and other low-energy projects. He is a trustee of the AECB, the Association for Environment Conscious Building.

Paul is also active in promoting cohousing as a radical approach to providing better housing.  He is a director of the UK Cohousing Network and also of two local cohousing projects in Cornwall and Gloucestershire.


January 13th, 2022 16:00 through 18:00
Event Fee(s)
Members of The Green Register (this event only) £25.00
Non-Members (this event only) £35.00
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