Organised by the:
Basement Information Centre in partnership with BRE and The Concrete Centre
This basement Conference in 2005 ( which has been left highilghted due to its importance ) was a major success and its overall content may be seen below.
The Rt Hon Keith Hill MP, Minister of Planning and Housing said: “The Government is supportive of the greater use of high quality basements. Bright, modern, energy efficient basements are the future as more living accommodation for the same footprint has to be the right way forward”.
The Minister pointed out how, in mainland Europe and throughout America, basements are seen as a way to maximise land-use for small cost increase. Typically, in Germany the provision of a basement costs only 2 – 12% of the construction costs for up to 50% more living space. Describing himself as a ‘basement buff’, the Minister expressed his wish “to see ever greater use of basements in new housing developments in the UK”.
“It seems to me that what The Basements Information Centre is trying to achieve is very much in line with the Government’s commitment to delivering sustainable communities and economic land use”.
All of the presentations including the slides, the questions raised and the answers have now been added to this site, under the Conference Programme below.
Click HERE for news release for this event
Details of the Conference held on 24 Jan 2005
The Conference provided a real opportunity to learn of the real opportunities afforded by basements. Opportunities to make money: opportunities to increase the living space available for sale, by developing the land space beneath the house which is currently ignored. Doing so will allow better use of sites with the potential to realise extra profit per plot. The conference heard form builders who have done so already, and made people aware of the potential pitfalls, as well as learn of the solutions which have been developed. Everyone else is doing it. In Germany, 80% of new houses have basements and basement construction is commonplace throughout Europe and North America.
This conference was supported by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM) and was introduced by special guest speaker, the Rt. Hon Keith Hill MP, Minister for Housing and Planning, who recently visited Germany to study basement manufacture and construction.
The conference aimed to give insight into the new world of basements. To show you what is available and how easy it is to go about re-sourcing what may be a new area of construction.
The building of new basements, as well as the construction of basements in refurbishment and retrofit schemes was covered. As well as the presentations there was a panel discussion at the close of the conference that examined a number of questions raised by delegates.
To complement the conference, a number of manufacturers and installers of basements exhibited their products and services. The main trade groups covering precast concrete, concrete masonry and insitu concrete were also present.
It was attend by
Housing developers, housing associations, architects, engineers, local authorities, contractors, self-builders and others working in the housing sector and looking to make better use of the land at their disposal.
Conference Programme was
9.00 opening of exhibition
11.00 Opening Address Chairman: Dr Peter Bonfield, Director, BRE
Click HERE to open text of presentation (Word 9Kb) and HERE for speaker slide (53 Kb)
11.10 Key Note Speech: The Rt Hon Keith Hill MP, Minister for Housing and Planning
We are paticularly pleased to be able to make available the Minister’s Keynote address, which gave such a positive start to the Conference. Click here to download the full speech (Word 46Kb)
11.30 Why a Basement? Graham Place, Home Architecture
Graham Place, an architect who specialises in developing space below ground, will examine the need for fundamental change in our traditional housing to comply with modern needs. He will examine the rate of significant change in "Anno Domini" (AD), housing design since 1900 and the current pressures for change in the working environment, sustainable communites, social and family life. In addition pressure from government on housing density and regulatory change combined with the proliferation of road transport and modern IT leads to ever increasing numbers of people needing to work from home. He will deliver real experience of the demand for basements, the design and planning reaction.
Click HERE to open text of presentation (Word 32Kb), and HERE to down load slides (4053pdf Kb)
12.00 The Resurgence of the Domestic Basement in Self-Build Michael Holmes, Editor in Chief, Homebuilding and Renovating Magazine
Michael Holmes, Editor in Chief of Homebuilding and Renovating magazine, TV presenter and self-builder will review the niche in the housing market that builds in excess of 20,000 larger than average homes annually. He will discuss customer demand for more space which started the demand for the "Room in the Roof" and describe the ever increasing clamour for information on building basements. The Daily Telegraph along with H&R have run a "Best Basement " competition for the past 5 years, and Michael will give examples of the best of the bunch along with actual costings and comparisons with space above ground. He will describe both the pitfalls and the successes. Michael intends to build a basement in his next self-build. He will attempt to convince the delegates that he has made the right decision!.
Click HERE to open text of presentation (Word 24Kb), and HERE for speaker slide (53 Kb).
The Video used in this presentation is available as a Quicktime movie but it has a file size of 230 Mb, which is too large to practically download. We can, however, make this available on disc on request but a smaller version may be run by clicking HERE or dowloaded by clicking HERE.
12.30 Why not Change Fundamental Housing Design with the Addition of a Floor Below?" - Steff Wright, Chief Executive, Gusto Construction Ltd
Steff Wright is Chief Executive of Gusto Construction, a regional housebuilder near Grantham which offers houses with a sustainabilty marketing platform. The company has been extremely successful and has won the ear of ODPM for its innovation techniques. The requirement for increased density combined with its customers desire for more space has led Gusto Homes to bring a development to the market which includes a number of plots containing basements. Does the added value per house footprint add extra profit per plot? With overheads already covered, does margin need to be maintained if costs are fully recovered? Could such basements be left with a utility specification for the owners to finish when funds are available, with lightwells and windows, waterproofing etc in place but with bare floors and walls?
Click HERE to open text of presentation (Word 36Kb), and HERE to down load slides (6797pdf Kb)
13.00 Lunch and exhibition - a buffet lunch will be provided in the exhibition area
14.15 Refurbishment and Retrofit, Association of Underpinning Contractors - Robert Withers, The Withers Group
The speaker will be a director of a company that specialises in adding basements beneath existing dwellings. The scope of such work is wide and varied and can run from simply extending an existing cellar or under pavement vault right through to creating a basement under the whole area of a dwelling (retro-fit) or placing the basement beneath the garden! The presentation will examine the different options and show-case study examples. Creating space by extending into the roof is well known but going down has many advantages and is increasingly being used. You will probably want a retro-fit basement yourself following this talk.
Click HERE to open text of presentation (Word 27Kb), and HERE to down load slides (3702pdf Kb)
14.45 Simplifying Basement Design and Construction and Meeting the Building Regulations. Alan Tovey, Director, The Basement Information Centre
Alan Tovey, Director of The Basement Information Centre, will outline the fundamental principles of design and construction that lead to more reliable and simple basements. He will cover the different forms of construction and show how simple understanding, of the interaction between structures and waterproofing, can lead to better design. The inclusion of a basement affects the way a house has to be designed so to meet the various regulations. This can be simplified by using the Approved Document- Basements for Dwellings, which has recently been updated by the Basement Information Centre to cover the Building Regulations 2000. This will be reviewed as part of the presentation.
Click HERE to open text of presentation (Word 61Kb), and HERE to down load slides (pdf 768Kb)
15.15 Q&A Panel of experts:
Alan Tovey Director, The Basement Information Centre
Professor John Roberts Sustainable Technology Research Centre, Kingston University
Ian Hornby - National Technical Advisor, HBF
Andrew Hayward - Senior Policy Advisor, Council of Mortgage lenders
Peter Goring - Director John Doyle Group PLC/President Elect the Concrete Society
Paul Everall - Head of Building Regulations, ODPM
David Aulton - Managing Director, ThermoneX Ltd, The Basement Information Centre Ltd Manufacturer/Contractor member
Dr Peter Bonfield, Director, BRE
Click HERE to open text of Questions an Answers that occurred in this session (Word 67Kb)
16.00 18.00 Exhibition and drinks reception