A Low Impact Woodland Home – Sustainable Living

by heather

I found this amazing low impact home online today at Simondale.net, and had to share it with all of you.

This young family in Wales built this amazing, eco friendly home themselves. They spent around $4,000 (if I did the currency conversion right) on supplies, and invested 1,000-1,500 hours of work into the project.

Feast your eyes on the simple beauty of this home…

Courtesy Simondale.net

Courtesy Simondale.net




This house is like something out of a fairy tale, isn’t it?

It’s so inspiring to me that they did this on their own, with some help from friends and family. It’s truly amazing what can be accomplished when you have a dream, and the desire to make a difference.


Here are some of the details on this amazing home. This information was taken directly from their website, A Low Impact Woodland Home.

Some key points of the design and construction:

  • Dug into hillside for low visual impact and shelter
  • Stone and mud from diggings used for retaining walls, foundations etc.
  • Frame of oak thinnings (spare wood) from surrounding woodland
  • Reciprocal roof rafters are structurally and aesthetically fantastic and very easy to do
  • Straw bales in floor, walls and roof for super-insulation and easy building
  • Plastic sheet and mud/turf roof for low impact and ease
  • Lime plaster on walls is breathable and low energy to manufacture (compared to cement)
  • Reclaimed (scrap) wood for floors and fittings
  • Anything you could possibly want is in a rubbish pile somewhere (windows, burner, plumbing, wiring…)
  • Woodburner for heating – renewable and locally plentiful
  • Flue goes through big stone/plaster lump to retain and slowly release heat
  • Fridge is cooled by air coming underground through foundations
  • Skylight in roof lets in natural feeling light
  • Solar panels for lighting, music and computing
  • Water by gravity from nearby spring
  • Compost toilet
  • Roof water collects in pond for garden etc.

I highly recommend checking out this wonderful family’s website, which you can find here. They’ve posted the original plans (which they drew themselves, of course!) and there are many more wonderful pictures, as well a complete explanation on why they built such a unique, sustainable home.

There’s also a page that has many pictures of other similar, sustainable, natural homes, which you can find here. All of them are completely amazing.


Michele May 9, 2009 at 10:55 am

This is incredible! Thanks so much for sharing.

Chris Caesar, The News Wala May 9, 2009 at 5:54 pm

Wow! What an amazing find.

heather May 10, 2009 at 6:13 am


Yeah, their house looks like something out of “The Hobbit”. They said on their website that their design touches a lot of people, perhaps because it brings us back to our ancestors. And I think that’s a big part of it; there’s something just so old and comfortable about the way that house looks. It’s hard to describe the feeling I get looking at it.

Jade September 29, 2010 at 7:21 am

how does a low impact woodland home handle in direrent weather?

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