The Prince’s Natural House

Constructed at the Building Research Establishment (BRE), in collaboration with Natural Building Technologies and Kingerlee Homes, the Prince’s Natural House is our answer to eco-living.

Front view of the natural house

Built in 2012, The Prince’s Natural House demonstrates a simple, low-tech and easy-to-build alternative for volume housebuilders seeking to meet increasingly stringent low carbon targets for new homes.

Based at BRE’s Innovation Park at Watford, The Prince’s Natural House offers a prime example of how we can live in a traditionally built low carbon home built from natural materials.

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The house uses timeless principles of the thermal mass, passive ventilation and natural insulation to create a low carbon, healthy and attractive alternative to the high-tech solutions favoured by most architects.

The walls are composed of a simple solid clay block structure containing small pockets of air - some of which were laid by HRH The Prince of Wales. The small pockets throughout the clay act as insulation for the home, trapping pockets of air throughout the house. 

Simultaneously, insulation of the roof and floor space with lime-hemp and sheep’s wool, leave the house cool in the summer and warm in the winter, reducing heating and cooling bills.

To allow the walls to breathe, a problem with many new homes, we used breathable materials, paints and floor finishes, this stops the House from trapping dust or moisture that might create damp or mould in the future.

Our primary aim in promoting this long-term project is to show that it is very easy to make consumer choices that lead to lower impact and more naturally healthy homes. With current economic concerns, huge bills are a real driving factor for people when making decisions about their homes but other factors, such as health may go ignored.