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11th March 2009, 11:39am
Major honour for green building project
Hill Holt Wood model Work between the University of Lincoln and the Hill Holt Wood social enterprise project to design and construct a range of autonomous eco-buildings has won a national award.

The University’s Lincoln School of Architecture became involved three years ago in a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with Hill Holt Wood – a social enterprise based on the Lincolnshire-Nottinghamshire border which is recognised as an exemplar of sustainable development.

Now that successful partnership has been acknowledged at a national awards ceremony.

The relationship – developed through the KTP between the University and Hill Holt Wood – received the Award for Best Application of Social or Management Science at the Knowledge Transfer Partnership Awards 2009.

The University of Lincoln’s involvement at Hill Holt Wood began in 2005/06. A design competition was run in the Lincoln School of Architecture for students to draw up a blueprint for a new sustainable building – the Woodland Community Hall.

The winning scheme, which was developed in conjunction with Hill Holt Wood and Simons Design Ltd, is currently being constructed at Hill Holt Wood using locally-sourced materials. It is expected to be completed in summer 2009.

When finished, it will represent a benchmark for the design of autonomous sustainable buildings – exceeding all current building regulations.

As well as incorporating low-energy design principles, the community hall features a rammed earth hall with a reciprocal frame roof – a design in which each beam is supported by, and supports, another beam in the structure.

The project is intended to provide a practical methodology for the future design and development of self-sufficient, ‘off the grid’ buildings.

Dr Behzad Sodagar, Reader in Architecture at the University of Lincoln, said: “Seeing a blueprint created by my students in my design studio become a reality in the shape of the Woodland Community Hall has been very inspiring to our staff and students. The finished building will be the real legacy of this project. We’re very proud to have played a role in the pioneering work taking place at Hill Holt Wood over the last three years. Receiving this KTP Award is a real honour and shows that Hill Holt Wood, and the Woodland Community Hall, are now winning national recognition, both in terms of sustainable building design and in showing how KTPs can reap mutual benefits for business and education.”

Following the success of the Lincoln School of Architecture’s KTP with Hill Holt Wood, the University’s Lincoln Business School is now embarking on a fresh KTP. This will involve developing management and business models for social enterprise projects.

Michelle Davis, KTP Manager at the University of Lincoln, said: “The relationship which has developed between the University and Hill Holt Wood over the last few years is a fine example of the mutual benefits KTPs can bring. This award is a great acknowledgement of the work that has gone into making this partnership a success. We hope the new KTP between the Lincoln Business School and Hill Holt Wood will be just as fruitful.”

Karen Lowthrop, CEO at Hill Holt Wood, said “This excellent partnership has embedded Social Enterprise within the University of Lincoln, and the new KTP will bring Social Return on Investment to the fore of our business model. We look forward to working with Lincoln Business School in another exciting venture.”

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