My Modern House: article by The Modern House in March 2018 on building a Passivhaus for comfort and wellbeing.

Good Stock: article in Passive House Plus Issue 34. Ref pages 22-29

Stylish Stockport retrofit achieves radical energy savings

Renovating a 1960s house for comfort and efficiency: podcast HPH288 by Ben Adam-Smith from House Planning Help in September 2020

Churwell Avenue

The healthy house: the renovation of a dilapidated 1960s box to Passivhaus (EnerPHit) standard



  • Remodel the existing building fabric, but remain true to the original house.

  • Be certifiable to a recognised Passivhaus standard without compromising on design.

  • Be simple and affordable.


Original house:

  • 3-bedroom house built in 1961.

  • Dilapidated, unmodernised and unoccupied for several years.

  • Uninsulated brick/ block cavity wall construction.

  • Demolitions included removal of all internal walls, finishes, fittings and services. 

Completed house:

  • New triple-glazed windows, external doors and roof light.

  • Very high levels of insulation to walls, roofs and floors.

  • Mechanical ventilation system with heat recovery (MVHR).

  • New timber frame studio extension, UK grown cedar cladding.

  • Highly comfortable, clean and fresh environment with constant temperature.

  • Extremely low energy bills.


  • Noticeably fresher and cleaner.

  • Stable temperature throughout the day.

  • No draughts, damp or condensation.

  • Much improved sleep pattern for the whole family.

  • Significantly less dust, and consequently fewer spiders.

  • Enjoying lovely wide window sills.

See the BLOG for our diary on transforming this ordinary suburban house into something extraordinary.

Design team: 

HeskethHayden: client, designer, project manager.

Enhabit: Passivhaus consultant

Construction team:

Beswick and Son: Building works

Prestige: Kitchen

McDermott's: Electrical

Dave Plumber: Plumbing

Ian Plasterer: Plastering

Foggs Floors: Screeding

Cheshire Spray Painting: Spray painting

Pegasus Externals: External wall insulation

Photos: James Andrews Photography

Existing house before renovation
Front elevation at entrance after renovation
Top of the stairs. Full height doors. Industrial parquet flooring
Ground floor view
Ground floor plan as existing
Ground floor plan as built
Plans of original house
First floor plan as existing
Plans of house after refurbishment
First floor plan as built