The Hawthorns

The Hawthorns


Greencore Construction are experts in the design and build of high performance homes for self- builders and for landowners in the Oxfordshire area.

Buildings they create meet or exceed Passivhaus standards and what’s more they are built faster, using offsite manufacturing processes for the production of the main wall panels. These are  produced under strict quality control in their factory.

Greencore are specialists at building healthy buildings, which eliminate  toxins which could cause allergies.  Their buildings are hugely energy efficient creating very low heating bills – from £100 - £300 per annum.  This is thanks to the use of The “Biond” building system which uses Hemp-Lime in off-site manufactured wall panels, which is an extremely natural material and has high thermal qualities.

“Recent tests at Bath University prove that our Hemp-Lime panels have nearly four times the thermal inertia of mineral wool insulated panels.  This helps the homes we build to be warm in winter and cool in summer,” says managing director Ian Pritchett.

Hemp, which is now produced industrially in the UK and Europe, has been used for centuries to make rope, canvas and paper.  But when its mixed with lime, it forms a unique insulation material with natural “phase change” properties, as well as locking up carbon in the structure of a building. It’s a great choice for house builders looking to achieve high levels of energy efficiency in a zero carbon building material.

The Hawthorns, was a self-build project for managing director Ian Pritchett of Greencore.  The pre-fabricated hemp wall panels – have a low u value of 0.13 w/m2k and the hemp fibre insulation to the roof, achieving a U-value of 0.1w/m2k.  

The contractors re-used the existing foundations and slab for the new build, after an existing home on the site was demolished. 

Externally the new house is finished with a cladding of British cedar and render.  Recycled rubber Eco-slate was used for the roof covering, and Rationel’s Aura range of triple glazed timber windows were specified.

“Timber is always our material of preference for windows,” says Ian Pritchett. “Rationel’s Danish designed timber window products tick all the boxes.  They achieve good u values and with all the other natural materials we use in our methods of construction, they lock up the carbon within the structure of the building. And they are great value for money.”

This building is heated using electric under floor heating and an electrical system for hot water heating. PV panels on the roof generate more electricity that is used by the heating. There is also a MVHR unit –mechanical ventilation with heat recovery. This ensures a constant flow of fresh air into the home, and the units are fitted with filters to block pollen and other irritants. 


Learn about the importance of windows and doors in your home.

Case stories

View all
Cookies on

By continuing to use you accept the use of cookies.