Neil Lewis
January 2020
Case Study

Ty Newydd, Scethrog, Brecon

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Building Regulations and Retrofit to Improve Thermal Efficiency at Ty Newydd, Scethrog, Brecon

This case highlights how retrofitting a traditionally constructed building, to improve its thermal efficiency can be achieved whilst conserving and protecting its historic character - within the framework of the current building regulations.
Ty Newydd is an unlisted, traditionally constructed farmhouse with origins dating back to the 17th century. Its thick stone walls had been effectively ‘sealed’ with cement render for approximately 20 years, resulting in the walls being saturated.The render had failed and was cracked or ‘blown’ in places, and internally; structural timbers were rotting, floors at ground floor were damp and much of the internal plaster was disintegrating.
Anderton Planning and Conservation was appointed by the owner to present a case to LocalAuthority Building Control, to explain and justify the measures proposed for improving thermal efficiency. These were based on the fundamental requirement for the building to breathe; using vapour permeable products, with specifications informed by data modelling (Ty Mawr Lime, Brecon) based on local climatic conditions, the use and size of the building and its materials of construction.
This approach meets the requirements of the BuildingRegulations 2010  (Wales) as far as it is practicable, and provides a holistic, pragmatic solution to balancing the need to improve the thermal performance of a traditionally constructed building, whilst also ensuring that its historic character is conserved. The solutions proposed have been endorsed by both the local authority heritage officer and byTy Mawr Lime (supplier of traditional and sustainable building products).
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