SuperHome Database

Tring, Marsworth, Vicarage Road

House Summary

Mr and Mrs Kennedy

House Type:
1967 detached two storeys

Carbon saving:
92% - Remote Assessed  

  • Solar PV panels
  • Visitors to SuperHome Sep 2015
  • after solar thermal
  • Biomass system-min
  • local_fire_wood
  • photo 4
  • Open Homes event
  • new_visitors_alongside_reed_bed
  • photo 5

Measures installed:

  • Biomass Boiler
  • Cavity Wall Insulation
  • Ceiling insulation
  • Double Glazing
  • Draught-proofing
  • Floor Insulation
  • Loft Insulation
  • Low Energy Appliances
  • Low Energy Lighting
  • Mechanical Ventilation Heat Recovery
  • Rainwater Harvesting
  • Solar PV Panels
  • Solar Water Heating
  • Water Saving Devices
  • Wood Stove

Upcoming events

Early interest in Open Days encourages SuperHome owners to host more events. If you'd like to visit this property please contact the owner and let them know. SuperHomers are often happy to respond to questions about their refurbishment project by email between times. Please read ‘more on contacting this SuperHomer’ before you make contact.

Personal story:

Ever since an A-level physics project which involved designing your own eco-home, I’ve wanted to give it a go for real. The reality was a little more challenging than the theory. The journey has involved investigating the various technologies of varying maturity, working out which suit a modernisation project on a 1960s build within a conservation area, selection of products and suppliers, navigating the technicalities of grants, reduced rate VAT and on-going commitments of FiT and biomass fuel sourcing and storage. We’re now getting towards the end of the tweaking and optimising of our setup and have three boys who are learning the benefits of sustainable living.


  • Refurbishing 1960s house, gutted, re-plumbed, re-wired and extended, so needed to replace numerous appliances and central heating anyway
  • Reduction of impact on our environment
  • Achieving practical eco-living without knocking the house down and building a passive house
  • Making this work within a conservation area
  • Saving money on running costs for the long term
  • Avoiding oil fired heating (no mains gas)
Property background:

  • Late 1960 detached
  • Sited within conservation area
  • Village location on Herts/Bucks border
Key changes made:

  • Extended and modernised 8 years ago
  • Replaced everything but the exterior including heating system, plumbing, wiring and windows/doors
Measures installed in detail:

  • 4kW solar PV with FiT
  • Solar Thermal and Biomass – Wood Pellet Boiler feeding a large well insulated Thermal Store
  • Which in turn feed multi-zoned under-floor heating throughout the ground floor and towel rails in bathrooms, with capacity (not yet installed but we’re still hopeful) to support a hot tub during the warmer months
  • 2 x Wood burning stoves (8kw in living room – open plan to staircase so heats much of upstairs where we have no radiators; 16kw in kitchen/family area and dining room) fuelled with beech firewood  bought in bulk delivery from a local managed source
  • Assisted by full Heat Recovery Ventilation which ensures we retain the warmth but introduce fresh air
  • 9000 litre Rainwater Recovery feeding washing machine, water-saving toilets and outside taps
  • Low Energy Appliances throughout
  • Low Energy Lighting throughout (phasing out compact fluorescents for LEDs)
  • Multi-layered loft, Cavity Wall, Under-Floor, Ceiling and Acoustic Insulation
  • Argon filled, low-e timber double glazed windows and doors throughout
  • Reed-bed filter for large cold fish and koi pond
Benefits of work carried out:

With FiT and wood burning stoves topped up by wood pellet boiler we’re running a large detached family home on a relatively modest budget with minimal on-going impact on the environment.

Favourite feature:

  • Wood burning stoves – just love fire.
  • Solar pergola – favourite project so far.
Common questions and answers for this SuperHome

What difference does it make if you clean your solar PV panels?+

I noticed a 2kWh difference in a day from cleaning my panels at peak in the summer last year. I deliberately chose 2 consecutive days where the forecast was for virtually unbroken sunshine. Until then, I had not cleaned my panels, so will be keen to see what the annual numbers are this year – I plan to clean them more frequently.

Contact this homeowner

Assessment types

SuperHomes Assessed

A home that has been visited and assessed by us and confirmed as reaching the SuperHome standard, which demonstrates a 60% carbon saving.

Homeowner Reported

Information has been provided by the homeowner about their home and energy use prior to the installation of measures and following their installation which demonstrates a carbon saving. This information has not been verified.

Remote Assessed

The homeowner has provided information on their home including what measures have been installed which has enables an assessor working on our behalf to assess their carbon savings. This home has not been visited to verify the measures installed.


This home has not been assessed, but the homeowner has reported what measures have been installed. It may be that this home is awaiting assessment.