Pedalhaus Tour 2013
This year’s cycle ride took place on 22nd September, starting at Faversham, heading along the North Kent coast to Margate, via Whitstable, calling in at Grey Lyn, a Passivhaus designed by Conker in 2009.
15 AECB members, friends and students gathered at Faversham station for the first short leg to the house. Every type of bike was represented, from mountain bikes to commuters with baskets, but I did note that AECB members prefer a Brooks leather saddle!
Grey Lyn is a self build which has just been completed. The owners, Justin and Trudy of Invicta Clean Energy gave a great intro to their home, with an honest evaluation of the build process, difficulties encountered, technologies tested, and the finishing touches planned. The house sits in an infill plot replacing an old bungalow, the site has 37 neighbours, with tricky overlooking and privacy issues, it is in a conservation area, and to top it all, the planners also imposed height restrictions. These factors were key in evolving the design, along with exploiting the perfect south facing garden. Being on a former chalk quarry meant that rammed chalk was on the materials menu from the outset, a basement was also created to offset the lack of loft.
After unlimited coffee, tea, flapjacks and biscuits we headed for the famous seaside town of Whitstable, via the coast road. We lunched at the Tower Hill tea gardens, finishing off their stocks of sandwiches and cake, enjoying the gardens and sea view. Some departed to visit the town, or take a short cut home. A small group of us carried on along the coast path with the wind behind us, past Herne Bay, the Roman towers at Reculver, and finally to Margate, which greeted us with the sight of the new Turner Contemporary Gallery (hopefully a future AECB visit).
We finished the day by finding a great chippy near the harbour, before heading to the station. Amazingly Laura Trott, the olympic cyclist gave me a lift home, or at least a high speed train named in her honour!
Paul Mallion, Kent Group Leader