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Findhorn Foundation

October 2009

See the Findhorn web site

The Findhorn Foundation near Fores in the North East of Scotland has a couple of interesting areas of eco-housing and a whole approach to living lightly on the earth including 750kW of electrical energy from 4 wind turbines recently installed for Findhorn Wind Park Ltd which is the trading arm of Findhorn Foundation. See Ekopia. Another sustainable aspect of Findhorn is the Living Machine way of treating the sewage.

The community is very welcoming to visitors who turn up for a day or two to look around and if you only want to learn about the buildings there, then this will be OK but if you want to understand how the whole place works then you would need to sign up for the introductory week.

In the late 1980s a small area of eco housing known as the Bag End Cluster was built to what is still a very high ecological standard. The designers were Eco Arc, the renowned architectural practice who have recently completed Lancaster Cohousing

About the same time the whisky barrel houses were erected. They are made from reused Douglas fir whisky vats bought from a local distillery. Cute eh?

More recently about 40 new selfbuild eco houses have gone up in the Field of Dreams. These all have high eco specifications which mostly include 200mm of insulation in the walls and 300 in the roof, solar and wood burning heating and the use of low embodied energy materials. SAP ratings around 100.

There are plans afoot to build another 70 self build houses

See more about this octagonal house on the EcoArc web site

These three houses all share one wood pellet stove which makes sense because these stoves are quite expensive and, like most boilers, work more efficiently when they are working at a steady full load rather than cycling on and off.

The layout is generally quite dense which is economical with land and emphasises the sense of community

Landscaping tends to be informal and low key which is helped by the very low traffic load which means pavements and kerbs are not required.

There are also some quite interesting house designs

with southerly solar gain being put to good use

Findhorn has also recently built a couple of eco lodges for visitors

The ‘Living Machine’ wastewater plant.

 

6 comments to Findhorn Foundation

  • Rose Johnston

    Can you tell me what the situation is at the moment re.finding a plot and building a small house?
    All good wishes,
    Rose Johnston

  • Brenda

    Hi Ian
    Are you still selling woodland plots? I’m very interested in building (well, getting built!) a very small Eco house, and am especially interested in it being in a community – in the loose sense of the word – of similar properties. I definitely think there’s a market for it , hope you still have them!
    Best wishes

    Brenda

  • Audrey

    Hell I am a regular visitor to the Park and would like to know if it is possible to buy/rent a plot of land at the Findhorn Foundation to either build an eco lodge or site a caravan.

    Kind regards

    Audrey Smith

  • Wilma

    Hello Ian, I noticed your post and wonder if you could let me have details of the woodland plots in Kinloss if there are any remaining.
    Regards
    Wilma

  • Ian

    Hi Ray
    I’m not part of the organisation but I think if you email nfa.admin@findhorn.cc someone will advise you.
    Meanwhile if you don’t find any land in the foundation that suits you, and there’s very little left there now, feel free to come back to me any time. We have just acquired a large estate at Kinloss, quite close to Findhorn, and are selling large woodland plots there, approx sizes 17mx95m. Average sale price around 65k.
    We’re also looking at creating much smaller plots for about a dozen eco-lodges in a walled garden on the estate, but these wouldn’t be large enough for families of course, and would have less privacy as well.
    Regards
    Ian Sutherland McCook

  • RAY FENTON

    Please can you send some info with regards to how one can join the community and live there with a view to building a permanent home there

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