Tony Wrench’s Roundhouse

Herbert Gruber
Written by Herbert Gruber

This is an ecohome of wood frame, cordwood and recycled window walls, straw-insulated turf roof; with solar power and wind turbine for electricity, compost toilet and reed beds for grey water.

Key data

City:Brith dir MawrCompletion:1997Type of Construction:load bearing straw bale, hybridDesign/ArchitectureTony WrenchStraw Builder:Tony WrenchBuilding Costs:ca. 200,- €/m2Possibility to visit:NoPress photos:No
Photocredit:Herbert GruberOwner Builders Contribution:Self-buildDeficiencies:The straw under the film turns into compost within about 2-4 years, Tony Wrench knows that too. His solution: replace the straw bales every 2-4 years, which is 1 day's work and costs nothing else.
Residential acreage:ca. 25m2U-Value (Wall):W/m2KU-Value (Roof):W/m2KHeating/Ventilation System:Bath stove for hot water, small photovoltaic system for electricity and computer, otherwise energy self-sufficientCategories:Projects UK,
More about this Straw Bale House

From the website: “This is an ecohome of wood frame, cordwood and recycled window walls, straw-insulated turf roof; with solar power and wind turbine for electricity, compost toilet and reed beds for grey water.”
Tony Wrench is a dropout. Permaculture expert. And he knows exactly what he is doing. He lives in this low-cost self-built house with a few pallets on the floor and sheepskins on top (as insulation), swears by his green roof, he gets the building materials from the forest, the hot water is prepared with an old bath stove, he bathes one after the other, he has what he needs. He knows that this life only works without children (they are already grown up). His only connection to the outside world (the small village of Brith dir Mawr in Wales) is a cable for his internet connection (after all, he lives mainly from workshops and selling books via his Website).

Von der Website: „This is an ecohome of wood frame, cordwood and recycled window walls, straw-insulated turf roof; with solar power and wind turbine for electricity, compost toilet and reed beds for grey water.“
Tony Wrench ist ein Aussteiger. Permakulturexperte. Und er weiß ganz genau was er tut. Er lebt in diesem Low-Cost-Eigenbau mit ein paar Palletten am Boden und Schaffellen darauf (als Isolierung), schwört auf sein Gründach, die Baumaterialien holt er sich aus dem Wald, das Warmwasser wird mit einem alten Badeofen bereitet, gebadet wird nacheinander, er hat was er braucht. Dass dieses Leben nur ohne Kinder funktioniert, ist ihm klar (die sind schon erwachsen). Seine einzige Verbindung zur Außenwelt (dem kleinen Dorf Brith dir Mawr in Wales) ist ein Kabel für seine Internetverbindung (schließlich lebt er hauptsächlich von Workshops und seinem Buchverkauf über seine Website).

About the author

Herbert Gruber

Herbert Gruber

Herbert is author of the book "Neues Bauen mit Stroh in Europa" (New Building with Straw in Europe), head of the austrian strawbale network ASBN and partner in the Leonardo-project "STEP" (Strawbale Training for European Professionals) and the Erasmus project "BuildStraw Pro" (a project to get formal national recognition of the training) and "Make your City Smart". As a collector he documents European straw bale buildings since 1999 on his website (database, german), in lectures, workshops and books.