Camden Design Awards ‘Highly Commended’ 2022
Max Fordham House has been ‘Highly Commended’ by the Camden Design Awards 2022.
This house was the brainchild and final home of the celebrated engineer and pioneer of sustainable design, who sadly passed away in early 2022. “People, and the things they do, generate heat all the time”. Max long held the view that this should be sufficient to keep warm inside on a freezing, overcast day.
“Only by achieving this can a building truly be called sustainable”.
The Passivhaus standard was adopted as a robust way to achieve this. The building’s thermal envelope, its ventilation system and its windows are designed so that the heat lost on a winter’s day is no more than the heat generated by people living in the house. While the house does have a heating system, it is no bigger than a domestic kettle. With no fossil fuels in the building, a rooftop array of PV meets the majority of the annual energy demands of the house.
All occupied spaces have been designed for excellent daylight which passively warms up the house in the morning and provides pleasant sunshine. The green roofs and planting support biodiversity and give a
connection to nature. The building was designed so that the ground floor can be used as a selfcontained dwelling, without the need for an occupant to use the stairs. The floor throughout is cork, which helps with acoustic character and provides some protection from falls. All these wellbeing benefits helped to provide Max with a comfortable home for his final years.
The Judges’ View:
Max Fordham and Justin Bere have achieved a world class piece of M&E design through the design of this house. It demonstrates how sophisticated environmental technology can be used in a domestic setting. The architecture is simple and subtle forming a backdrop to the planting across the building, which helps to ground it in its surroundings and add warmth to the outdoor spaces. It is undoubtedly a visionary piece of sustainable design.