SuperHome Database

London, Camden, Belsize Park Gardens, The Coach House

House Summary

John Doggart
House Type:
Victorian 3-bedroom detached
Carbon saving:
70% - SuperHomes Assessed  
Total invested:
Smart Homes

Measures installed:

  • Condensing boiler
  • Double Glazing
  • Draught-proofing
  • External Wall Insulation
  • Flat roof insulation
  • Internal Wall Insulation
  • Low Energy Lighting
  • Mechanical Ventilation Heat Recovery

  • Belsize Park SuperHome
  • Belsize_Park_Front
  • BelsizeLivingR
  • BelsizeT_hall-sunlight
  • BelsizeT_living_room
  • BelsizeT-kitchen
  • Belsize Visitors
  • Belsize Back Elevation comp

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.

What visitors are saying

"A very informative and inspiring visit. A wonderful way to provide accessible information and to help us all feel there are things we can do to reduce our energy use and improve our home comfort."

"My first visit to a SuperHome & I think this is a brilliant way of sharing the knowledge."

"Good to hear from owners rather than salesmen."

"Very informative and covered a broad range of measures, very good information to take away and we were made to feel at home!"

"Some exciting bits and pieces I want to take up on as a result of this visit. Useful to hear about electricity use monitoring."

"Simple solutions clearly explained and encouragement to put into practise. Fab visit. Best open house event yet!"

"Incredibly informative - detailed, personal, on site - thank you."

"I have already taken various eco measures on my home but this visit showed me possibilities that I had more or less given up on .. ie. cladding, as I have solid walls... and how to do this relatively painlessly."

"Some of the initiatives are so simple and inexpensive - amazing to find them out! Really impressed with windows and clothes airer."

"Very interesting visit. Lovely to see how easy it is to green your home. The window ventilation was new to me and definitely something I would consider."

"John and Zoe were very good at explaining cost benefits and some of the detail of materials behind their journey to a superhome - superhosts! A cosy home on a snowy day is proof enough!"

"Very informative and an eye-opener to a world of energy saving. What is most important is the fact that the architecture has been kept in tact."

"Very interesting tour, very practical information, inspiring and it can be easily replicated at a reasonable cost."

"A very interesting and useful example of straightforward measures that any householder could apply."

"Nice people, great home, very knowledgeable and informative. It showed how comfortable an old house can be with efficient insulation. Inspired!"

"I lived in Sweden for many years and many of the things I have seen are commonplace there. It is good to see them in the UK as well now."

"Well explained tours to a non-technical audience."

"I have been to several Superhomes and learn something new with each visit. Hosts are always helpful and friendly. I always leave full of amazing tips and feeling very inspired.”

“The main thing I have taken away is insulation, insulation, insulation. It seems the most pro active thing coupled with double glazing, draught elimination and of course a condensing boiler.”

"Highly informative and thought provoking - inspires for future action."

Personal story:

The retrofit was spread over 13 years and we started it in 1998. 


The main motivations for the renovation were environmental – for the long term survival of society. Of all the environmental factors the most damaging is energy because: it is running out, it produces CO2 and it raises issues of security of supply (especially since it is difficult to find alternatives). Energy in the home is one of the largest issues. Homes have the longest replacement cycle of anything we own – every 200 years.

I am already involved in energy conservation and therefore doing the retrofit was the natural thing to do. Although saving the planet is more important to me, there is a bit of a motivation to save money as well.

Property background:

The Coach House is a unique Victorian dwelling in Belsize Park. There is more space on the ground floor than the first floor and I particularly like the garden and the façade. Before the refurbishments the house was a bit draughty but there was no mold and the light level was unusually good.

Key changes made:

Some of the key aspects of the renovation included highly insulating walls, inside and out, upside-down flat roof insulation, draught proofing and double glazing. A localized air heat recovery and a condensing gas boiler with good controls and insulated pipework were also installed.

Measures installed in detail:

  • Gas condensing A rated boiler
  • Double Glazed windows with Low E glass and Argon filled
  • High Performance timber windows at the rear of the property by Rationel, Argon filled and low e glass (U value 1.12)
  • Roof lights double glazed
  • Overhauled and draught stripped old windows which were also routed  and grooved
  • External wall insulation using 100mm extruded polystyrene on sides and back (U value 0.29)
  • Flat roof insulation using 80mm expanded Polystyrene on top of asphalt flat roof, (U value 0.5)
  • Internal wall insulation using 100mm Knauf Thermoshell mineral wool insulation internally on road side
  • Low energy appliances include: gas tumble drier, also internal and external hanging clothes driers
  • All lights are compact fluorescent or LED
  • Individual MVHR units in kitchen & 2 bathrooms (HR25H Ventaxia) recover 80% heat
  • Air test results = 3.6/m3/h/m2 @50Pa. (before it was 6.4)
  • Careful detail and site supervision
  • Movement detector light in internal hallway, also glass bricks
Benefits of work carried out:

My house is much more comfortable now and I feel I have done my bit to save the world with a 70% reduction in CO2 emissions. An added benefit is that you can hardly see the difference the new measures make because they do not change the outward appearance of the house.

The fuel bills have been a lot cheaper since installing the various eco measures and we have saved a lot of money. There is also a return investment of about 5% – where else can you get a comparable deal?

Favourite feature:

My favourite feature is probably the wall insulation as it has made the house much warmer.

Common questions and answers for this SuperHome

How did you deal with pipes and drains when you installed external wall insulation?+

The plumber cut all the pipes where they went into the wall, added 100mm extensions then glued back the original pipe work. At the bottom of the pipe work he glued a joggle. The original pipe work was re-secured to the wall before the insulation was applied, using wooden stilts treated against rot.

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.