Work has been going on at Edible Futures for four weeks, with the aim of creating a well insulated diverse space to act as a centre for the farms activities. It is also important that the building sits well within and respects its rural setting. Using straw as the main wall material therefore makes alot of sense.
The building is completely cement free, this means no concrete foundations and using lime between the brickwork. A gravel foundation was used instead of concrete for the foundations.
Red Kite have been running a summer internship, for people to learn general construction skills, as well as those specific to environmental building. Alot of wood work was required to build the plates that go below and above the bale wall (to make the bale sandwich!).
The laying of the first bales is always an exciting moment in a project. The building suddenly starts to take form very quickly. All the bales were laid for the walls in 3 days.
The laying of the bales is important so that they create a good wall for plastering and will compress to create a level base for the roof to sit on. Compression is an integral structural aspect to building with load bearing straw.