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Eco Centre and Education Building 

Location Cockermouth, Lake District National Park

Type Low Carbon Education Building

The Cockermouth Eco Centre is a low carbon break out space for the school. Designed as showcase of environmental design, the building is a super insulated timber frame using passive ventilation, drawing cool air in above an external moat with automatic vents in the roof that create a stack effect above the plant-filled biomes. The energy centre has a graphic display of the energy produced by the Solar Panels, displaying how the building is functioning. The design is a playful showcase of shapes and local materials.

Sustainability Strategy

PLACE +++ 

The design stemmed from concensus building design workshops with pupils, staff and local community.The use of local materials connects the building to its locality, with a stepped form set into the hillside. Windows connect occupants to the long views across the North Western Lake District fells


The highly insulated building fabric and passive ventilation strategy, combined with views over the garden and fells, create a calm quiet working environment for staff and students. C02 and humidity monitors linked to Passive Ventilation controls ensure consistent Indoor Air Quality


A highly insulated building shell, and high performance windows/doors, reduce energy demand. Solar Photovoltaic panels and a Wind Turbine provide energy for the building


Rainwater discharges into moat and surrounding wetland garden. Rainwater is used for WC flush, and plant watering in Biomes


Timber SIPS system. Cladding: local oak shingles, timber cladding panels, glass, natural stone, recycled copper. Timber high performance windows and doors. Recycled carpet, wood fibre lining board, recycled furniture, recycled bricks, recycled insulation, recycled concrete foundations, recycled paper insulation. Sedum roof.



Local developer, contractor and suppliers. Natural and recycled materials where possible.



Celebration of inventive architecture, which connects to the locality and provides a positive showcase of sustainable building to inspire future generations of pupils and staff. 

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