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Rotating house transforms

By Ashbourne News Telegraph  |  Posted: March 02, 2010

The Dumble

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AN INNOVATIVE rotating house being built on the outskirts of Ashbourne is nearing ʻstage twoʼ of the construction process.

Robin Hamilton, the brain behind Dumble Down formally known as The Dumble Project has now moved in to the static wing section of his innovative Snelston-based home referred to as ‘stage one’.

Mr Hamilton is putting the finishing touches to his wing, which sits above a four-car garage, and will eventually link on to the main circular section of his home which he regards as ‘partmachine’.

The house, when finished, will be able to rotate 360-degrees looking out over the Weaver Hills and Dove Valley. When completed, it is believed that it will be the largest privately owned rotating home in the world.

Mr Hamilton said: “It is providing cutting edge building technologies and materials, which together with its extraordinary design enable it to be built for a lower cost per square metre than a conventional static building.

The 650 tonne home offers 10, 000 square feet of living space across three open-plan floors.

The main circular section of the building will rotate around a central axis, moving on 100 special castors to distribute the weight.

As well as giving an ever-changing rural panorama through its full-height windows and huge glass atrium, the house will be able to follow the sun, warming the interior through passive solar heating and, if necessary, turning away if it gets too warm.

Internal heating will come from a ground source heat pump fed from a borehole that also provides the property’s water supply.

The insulated walls, over a metre thick, are also interactive and designed to store energy, helping to keep the house warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

All electricity demand will be met from solar panels and specially-designed wind turbines set into the roof. These will feed power to storage batteries to ensure a constant supply.

Mr Hamilton hopes the project could have farreaching implications for the construction of energy-efficient buildings in the future for both dwellings and commercial buildings.

Since moving in to his unusual home, last autumn, the house has exceeded Mr Hamilton’s expectations.

He said: “Some of the energy recovery systems and heating and ventilation systems that were originally to be positioned in the main rotating house will now be incorporated into the static wing ready to feed the main house. This will save time later on, and also reduce the running costs of our present home” “This has been a very useful exercise because we have learnt, we have tested the new techniques and they have worked splendidly and better than we expected, so we can now get stuck in to the rotating house with that sort of confidence.” Due to the current economic climate, Mr Hamilton has admitted that progress has ‘slowed down’ and that the project has fallen behind the original schedule, but he is ‘very happy’ now he is living in the static wing, which is providing wonderful living space and atmosphere, and also people can begin to get an impression of what the main rotating house will look like.

Film crews from the Channel 4 series Grand Designs have made several visits to the house and they, together with presenter Kevin McCloud, plan to follow the construction through to end.

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