Trelowarren New Build Terrace

A bright future – blending traditional Cornwall with innovative, modern, sustainable design

The pool at Trelowarren

For Trelowarren Estate / Sir Ferrers Vyvyan; £8m contract value (4 phases); completed 2001 to 2009.


Gale & Snowden has been the architects for Trelowarren since 1999, undertaking a number of phases to create the world class and award winning development at the estate. The main Trelowarren house and gardens are Grade I listed and have true Cornish character and ambience. The whole development has been designed to be consistent with the environmental policy that the client has developed for the rest of the estate. With this in mind, the houses, the renovated buildings, the swimming pool and leisure facilities have all been designed to the highest environmental and healthy building standards, are sympathetic to the historical setting and Cornish traditions and serve to enhance the feeling of continuity on the estate.


Trelowarren uses a central, wood-fired boiler to provide carbon-neutral heating and hot water. The boiler can generate a total peak demand output of 550kW. The wood for the boiler is coppiced from woodland on the estate, guaranteeing the quality of the fuel source and enabling a self-renewing energy source.


Construction – timber ‘Twin Frame’ ® System developed by Gale & Snowden Architects to enable super-insulated air tight walls and roof panels which eliminate thermal bridging and use readily available low embodied energy, local materials.


Low energy design including:

  • Super insulation; U-values of construction: floor 0.14 W/m2K (200 mm EPS insulation); walls 0.13 W/m2K (300 mm cellulose insulation); roof 0.13 W/m2K (350 mm cellulose insulation; windows & doors 1.20 W/m2K (double glazed, double low-e, argon)
  • Air tightness – fan pressurisation test to 3ach@50 PA
  • Natural daylight design for all habitable rooms
  • Inclusion of thermal mass to provide stable internal temperature fluctuations and reduce overheating


Energy efficiency measures have resulted in the houses being very comfortable to live in with little internal temperature variation.


Healthy building design - Low VOC materials, organic paints, stains and waxes, avoidance of dust mite habitats, reduction of EMFs, stable / thermal comfort, maximum natural daylight.


Low water use / low energy appliances - The estate draws its water from is its own water source on the estate. However, to reduce the amount of water used, low water appliances, such as 2/4 litre dual flush WCs, pressure reduction valves and low water showers and taps have been used in all units.


Low maintenance – Low maintenance and easy to clean materials have been specified, including green oak cladding (minimal maintenance), galvanised steel rainwater goods, marmoleum and limestone tiling to ground floors, low maintenance ventilation system (no fans or ducts to clean). An ecological cleaning manual has been provided to avoid unnecessary toxic cleaning products from being used.