Gorslas primary school

Client: Carmarthenshire County Council 
Value: £4,000,000 
Location: Carmarthenshire 
Date: 2016-2022 
Treated floor area: 1357 m2 

Our role:

Passivhaus Consultants RIBA Stages 3-5 appointed by main contractor


Project details:

Gorslas Primary School is a new single form entry, Welsh language primary school constructed on a former recreation ground in the village of Gorslas, Carmarthenshire. It replaces the existing sub-standard building nearby. 

The building is of timber frame construction with an insulated ground floor slab. At the start of the project the design team were largely Passivhaus novices so we had to collaborate very closely with architects, structural engineers and building services engineers to ensure the designs worked for Passivhaus. Rigorous attention to detail was required to ensure that our Passivhaus Planning Package (PHPP) model correctly reflected the designs and that the designs were buildable. 

At the beginning of the construction stage we held a Pre-Construction Design Review workshop with the site Passivhaus Champion, Contract Manager and design team to identify risk areas of the construction and any outstanding elements of Passivhaus evidence which needed to be closed out. We also held several construction workshops to address risk areas and plan sequencing of the air barrier as well as undertaking regular site inspections via video link and in person. 

The building is nearing completion in early 2022 and has been air tested at 0.15 air changes per hour which we believe is the UK’s most airtight school. This was down to the excellent work of the Contractor’s Passivhaus Champion who was a trained Passivhaus tradesperson, as well as site communication and collaborative working with the structural engineer and architect on the most complex airtight details. 

Project team:

Contractor: Lloyd and Gravell Construction
Architect: Acanthus Holden Architects
Structural Engineer: Roger Casey Associates
Building Services: Bullock Consulting

Supply Chain: 

Timber frame: Seven Oaks Modular
Insulated raft foundation: Isoquick
Windows: Nolan/Al UK
Ventilation: Swegon