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RIBA East (Cambridge) - Refurbishing the existing housing stock: priorities and unintended consequences


Thursday, 1 December 2016 from 14:00 to 16:30 (GMT)

RIBA East (Cambridge) - Refurbishing the existing...

Ticket Information

Ticket Type Remaining Sales End Price Fee VAT Quantity
RIBA/CIAT Individual member (£62 + VAT) 17 Tickets 30 Nov 2016 £62.00 £0.00 £12.40
Non member (£89 + VAT) 20 Tickets 30 Nov 2016 £89.00 £0.00 £17.80
RIBA Student member (£15 + VAT) 20 Tickets 30 Nov 2016 £15.00 £0.00 £3.00

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Event Details

There are around 26 million dwellings in the UK and around two million non-domestic buildings, the majority of which will still exist in 2050. At present, these dwellings represent around 27% of the UK’s CO2 emissions and their poorly insulated fabric means they are both difficult and expensive to heat. It has been calculated that this may annually have led to between 25,000 and 30,000 cold related deaths in the UK. By simply refurbishing to much higher insulation and airtightness standards, this would reduce the operational energy required just to heat our buildings by more than 60%.

This seminar will be split into two parts. During the first part, delegates will be given an overview of the UK housing stock, and drivers for insulating it, including brief case studies of successful low-energy fabric efficiency upgrades. There will then be examples of unintended consequences of fabric upgrades, such as, ‘take back’; buildings becoming overheated; fabric damage; interstitial condensation with internal wall insulation; and, air quality issues (IAQ)). The seminar will also look at the principles of phased step by step upgrades, taking into account whole building performance, and it will suggest clients’ possible upgrade ‘triggers’ as opportunities, such as the replacing of a kitchen being the ideal time to look at internal wall insulation and water efficient appliances.

The second part consists of individual workshops with a given retrofit case study:

  • Delegates will critique and highlight possible unintended consequences of a case study’s retrofit
  • Delegates will propose alternative strategies for refurbishment
  • Extracts from the STBA’s Responsible Retrofit Guidance Wheel will be used to help assess and propose refurbishment strategies and retrofit checklists from the second edition of The environmental Design Pocketbook.

Speaker: Sofie Pelsmakers DipArch MScArch MRes ARB RIBA, Architecture for Change (AfC) and doctoral researcher, UCL Energy Institute
Sofie is a RIBA chartered architect and environmental designer with more than a decade of practical experience in designing, building and teaching sustainable architecture. She taught sustainability and environmental design, and led a Master’s programme in Sustainable Design, at the University of East London. Sofie is currently a doctoral researcher at the UCL Energy Institute and is cofounder of Architecture for Change, a not-for profit environmental building organisation. She is author of The Environmental Design Pocketbook (2012, RIBA Publishing), the content of which this seminar draws on:

Core Curriculum topics: 1. Climate 2. Designing and building it 

Terms & Conditions 

  • Cancellations for pay-as-you-go tickets are permitted up to 10 working days before the event, delegate substitutions are accepted at any time, please contact for cancellation/substitution requests.
  • An email will be sent to confirm your place on receipt of your booking.  A second email confirming venue along with map/directions will be sent to you approx. 7-10 days before the event.
  • Bookings at the member rates will only be accepted if accompanied by a valid membership number.
  • If you require a purchase order to be quoted on your invoice this must be supplied at the time of booking.


Do you have questions about RIBA East (Cambridge) - Refurbishing the existing housing stock: priorities and unintended consequences? Contact RIBA East

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When & Where

Future Business Centre
Kings Hedges Road
CB4 2QT Cambridge
United Kingdom

Thursday, 1 December 2016 from 14:00 to 16:30 (GMT)

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