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  • GreenBricks_

🟩 GreenBricks Building of the Week 🟩 Heelis

Restrained green

HQ for Europe’s biggest conservation charity, the National Trust, this building proves sustainability can be executed on a budget. Low-rise, open-plan, beautifully restrained.


🏢Building Details

  • 76,500 sq ft, 2-storeys – trapezoidal shape

  • Completed 2005, combining 4 regional offices

  • Winner of 12 prestigious awards including 2006 RIBA Sustainability Award + 2007 Civic Trust Sustainability Award

👷🏾‍♀️ Developer & Contractor

✍️Architects & Engineers


  • BREEAM Excellent: CO2 emissions 65% lower than similar developments

  • Developed on brownfield site: removed contamination from Brunel’s Great Western Railway complex

  • Over 1,000 photovoltaic roof panels generate 30% of annual electricity requirement

  • Natural light and ventilation philosophy: saw tooth roof ensures even distribution and 3.7m floor to ceiling height maximises airflow

  • Minimum daylight factor of 5% to all regularly occupied areas – minimises artificial light

🥦 Wellbeing

  • Central atrium roof glazing allows sunlight to illuminate communal areas throughout the day

  • Ventilation ‘snouts’ (made from recycled beer cans) provide year-round wind-driven ventilation whilst maintaining sky view

  • High-level acoustic control: suspended acoustic baffles control reverberation in open plan meeting space; through pulley system, they double-up as acoustic screens to create enclosed breakout areas

  • 2 internal gardens provide light, air and natural beauty – one is a kitchen garden supplying garnishes for staff meals from the in-house café

🎈Bonus feature

Bespoke carpet made from the Trust’s flocks of Herdwick sheep is used throughout. As well as being highly durable, the commission supports local farmers. You herd it here first.

🔗 Check it out

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