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Chalkwell Hall Art Centre

A sustainable refurbishment of a grade II listed building into an artsand community centre (2009)

Chalkwell Hall has been restored from a semi-derelict Georgian farmhouse into a 21st century four storey home for the arts organisation Metal. Located at the heart of the community in Southend, the centre offers a flexible shared space for a variety of arts activities and events and provides accommodation to enable resident artists to live and work there. High levels of insulation in the floors and roof of the existing house create different thermal zones so that only occupied floors need to be heated. The new extensions and roof are super insulated and fitted with high performance double glazed windows. The heating and hot water of the building is provided by a combination of solar collector tubes on the roof and a wood pellet stove in the kitchen. The existing chimneys were relined to accommodate the flues for the new stove. The Hall consumes no gas, and is entirely heated by renewable energy sources. The two glazed sun spaces on the south facing façade of the Hall create warm and pleasant spaces in both the summer and winter months on sunny days often eliminating the need for heating in these rooms. All the windows open to create natural cooling and ventilation on particularly hot days, with the sunspaces converting to shaded open air verandas.

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