For high resolution images, further design information or interview/film/ photo opportunity, contact 01223 576 315 or email
Biodiversity Net Gain

AC Architects have been keeping abreast of the latest planning law by reading up on Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG).

The new BNG requirements, which will apply to small sites* from April 2024, mean all new developments will need to provide 10% more or better quality natural habitat than there was before development.

The statutory biodiversity metric tool enables us as designers to calculate the number of biodiversity units an existing site has before development, and then how many biodiversity units are required in order to meet the improvement criteria. Biodiversity Net Gain can be achieved through on-site and off-site means.

To test out the biodiversity metric tool, we have carried out an example calculation based on hypothetically developing AC’s office site so we can see the steps we’d have to take to measurably improve biodiversity, on or off site.

More information is available at:

Understanding biodiversity net gain - GOV.UK ( Biodiversity Net Gain FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions | Local Government Association

*Where extending more than 25sqm.

CAA Annual Reception, December 2023

AC Architects are proud sponsors and members of the Cambridge Association of Architects.

To find out more about CAA and the upcoming events for the new year visit their website below.

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From everyone at AC Architects Cambridge Ltd
AC Team

AC Architects Cambridge Ltd recently visited CoFarm Cambridge, a farm run by volunteers that donates its produce to the local community.

The team took part in picking raspberries, green beans, Haricots Verts, Romano Beans and string beans, weeding and raking up the soil to prepare for cultivating and spreading hay bales for a new produce area.

We were given a tour of the farm and had a discussion about the exciting plans for its future. It was great to see the community coming together for a such an important cause and learn about the impact that city centre farms like these have on bio-diversity and tackling food miles and climate change.

You can volunteer by going on CoFarm’s website:

Open Eco Homes logo

The Open Eco Home Autumn Season tours and talks are now live! Visitors will be able to virtually and in-person have insight into 10 local eco homes, including 6 expert led talks and workshops on making your home more energy efficient.

AC Architects is a proud sponsor of this event.

Please note that all tours must be booked in advance. For full details please go to: Open Eco Homes.


10no. 390W photovoltaic panels and 2no. 5.2kwh batteries were installed in November 2022, on the 4-bedroom detached home of a family of 2 adults and their teenage son. Whilst the main driving force for the family was to be more sustainable and less reliant on gas, the financial benefits of the short payback period and saving money on electricity bills quickly became evident.

Since the installation, and despite it being winter during this analysis, the system has already made large savings on the electric bill. By the middle of February 2023 the amount of daylight and the bright weather has led to several days of self-sufficiency where the electrical demand for the house has been largely met by the photovoltaic panels and the energy stored in the battery.

Looking back at their consumption of energy from the grid last year, approximately 240kwh was used whereas recently it is only 23kwh. The graph attached shows in blue the energy supplied from the battery, in yellow the energy supplied directly from the solar PVs, and in red where electricity has had to be imported from the grid.

The graph is dated 08/02/23 and whilst it was a relatively bright day, being early February, the daylight hours are relatively short. The electric bill from 20/03/23 to 19/04/23 for electricity used was £8.53 for the month after deducting the standing charge. A month later the bill had reduced to £2.71, compared to the bill during the months of May and June last year that was over £60 which is a massive saving especially given the rates have increased since then. It should be noted that the heating and hot water demand is satisfied by the existing gas boiler.

Now is the time to invest in solar PV systems so that you can also start generating free and clean energy for your home and save money on your bills.

The team at Futurebuild

AC Architects Cambridge Ltd visited the Futurebuild event in London, ExCel last week. It was an inspiring and enlightening day on the various innovative solutions developed that address the challenges we face in the built environment.

We had discussions with suppliers that specialise in natural building materials to alternative heating and hot water systems. We also attended seminars on how to build in hemp, achieve passivhaus standards, and on retrofitting techniques.

Gonville and Caius College

AC Architects Cambridge Ltd were appointed by Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge to design the refurbishment of their Aston Webb building, named after its famous Victorian Architect. Built in 1904, listed Grade II and admired by architectural historian Nikolaus Pevsner, the five storey, stone clad building wraps around the picturesque Rose Crescent in central Cambridge. A retail plinth of seven boutique shops sits above a basement with student sets and Fellows rooms occupying three upper floors. Six traditional college staircases provide access to the College accommodation.

AC Architects Cambridge Ltd carefully analysed the buildings significance and worked with the College and the Conservation Officer to achieve a sensitive modernisation scheme, relocating shower rooms from the basement to the upper floors, convenient for the residential accommodation, and remodelling the basement to create student kitchens with a continuous corridor connecting all six staircases.

Understanding the ingenuity of Sir Aston Webb, who ensured every student room was individually designed, has been critical in developing the agreed refurbishment strategy. Equally key has been working with the Mechanical and Electrical engineers, helping the College move from gas to electricity as the primary fuel with the target of substantially reducing their current energy consumption.

RIBA logo

We had an exciting visit from James Turnbull, Matt Blakeley and Sophie Schad from RIBA East and Cambridge Association of Architects to discuss ongoing projects, our practice and it's future. Thank you for the ongoing support.

The Village Nursery in Bellingdon, external

Towards the end of 2022 AC Architects visited the Brickworks in Bellingdon to find out more about the natural earth building blocks being developed there by H.G.Matthews. Dubbed Strocks, they are structural blocks made of waste clay leftover from the brickmaking process, and waste straw from H.G.Matthews own farms. These raw materials are sourced within 1 mile of the brickworks and are mixed using rainwater collected off all the buildings in the brickworks.

Earth is one of the oldest building materials, it is not new to the modern building industry but the revelation of forming earth into blocks means that earth construction is much more manageable and no more labour intensive than constructing a brick wall.

Here are some of the benefits to building in earth according to the developer;

- Earth walls provide your home with thermal mass, which means the walls store heat making your home act as a thermal battery. This results in a more consistent internal temperature through the day and night, reducing the amount of heating required.

- Unfired clay also performs as an effective humidity regulator, as the walls will absorb excess moisture from the air and during times of low humidity it will release the stored moisture back to the air.

- The overall indoor quality is therefore more stable which means the need for Mechanical Ventilation systems are not required and natural ventilation becomes more viable which ultimately could save you money.

- It is healthier for our environment, and healthier for us. There are no toxic substances used in Strocks and none in the process of making it.

- Instead of being fired they are dried using biomass boilers that burn wood from a sustainably managed local woodland.

Brickmaking is an energy intensive industry as it requires large amounts of heat to fire and dry the bricks. We are facing a climate crisis and there is an imperative to seek out low embodied energy alternatives to the building materials that we are familiar with. Strocks provide an ingenious development in masonry construction.

The Village Nursery, Bellingdon

We wish you a Happy New Year from all at AC Architects.

The climate emergency; cost of living crisis; and the effects of inflation all impact on construction projects. At AC Architects we are dedicated to building on our knowledge and long-standing experience as a Practice creating sustainable buildings, that are good for our environment, beautiful, and comfortable to live and work in.

We have an exciting array of projects lined up this year, using natural materials and helping clients convert from fossil fuels to fully electric.

33-35 Victoria Road, Cambridge

Through the standardisation of materials and products from mass production and convenience, the buildings we live and work in are built using damaging processes out of unsustainable materials that are rapidly destroying the delicate balance of the ecosystem. As members of this system, our lives rely on this balance being maintained.

The manufacturing of building materials and products in construction account for 11% of global greenhouse gas emissions according to World Green Building Council. We have an exciting opportunity to re-evaluate and look towards using more sustainable materials that are either recyclable, more naturally sourced, or less energy intensive to make and even reusing materials to reduce our harmful impacts on the environment.

A materials’ value extends beyond its initial use; what happens during the materials’ extraction and after it’s useful lifespan in a building has a huge impact on it’s carbon cost. Oil-based materials have a massive negative impact on the climate during their extraction, and will not naturally decompose when they are finished with and disposed of. Approximately 40% of our construction waste is still disposed of in landfill according to 2019 Global Status Report for Building and Construction. However, natural materials usually have a significantly lower impact and leave little to no lasting trace once they are finished with.

Moving towards a circular economy is a complex process, however, as displayed in our shop window, there are many alternative natural materials that exist and can be used in place of the ‘business as usual’ destructive materials and products. We can build our environment to better suit our natural environment.

Christmas decorations

The Chesterton Trail has brought joy and levity to our community, out of response to this Covid crisis and we are so happy to support this fantastic movement in creating wonderful pieces of art! Go and follow the Animal Trail around Chesterton today to AC Architects to find our new bunny friend.

3c Shared Services

AC Architects Cambridge have worked alongside 3C Building Control who deliver a professional and reliable consultation team on a range of sectors from sustainable, bespoke and conservation projects.

We have found that 3C Building Control has helped to us achieve our innovative, quality designs and environmentally friendly solutions from its intention on paper to implementation on site.

Open Eco Homes logo
The annual Open Eco Home event will be taking place in Cambridge on 22nd and 28th September 2019. Visitors will be able to tour low-energy homes and buildings, including Europe’s first Eco-Mosque and the biggest passive house construction in Cambridge.

AC Architects is a proud sponsor of this event and we are delighted that one of our own projects is featured.

Please note that all tours must be booked in advance. For full details please go to: Open Eco Homes 2019
The AC Architects team
AC Architects recently visited “The Old House Show” at the Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich. Organised by the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (S.P.A.B.), this was the inaugural event for the trust which aimed to showcase the SPAB’s practical approach to working with historic buildings.

Throughout the day S.P.A.B. put on a series of talks, traditional craft demonstrations and exhibits focusing on the work in and around old buildings. The team particularly enjoyed a talk from Iain Boyd, the chairman of S.P.A.B. entitled “New design for Old Buildings - The SPAB Approach” as well as speaking to the exhibitors and enthusiastic craftspeople who were on hand to pass on their technical knowledge.

For more information about the Society please go to: The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings
Grand Designs Live 2018
The design team from AC Architects Cambridge Ltd recently attended “Grand Designs Live”, the UK’s top contemporary home show, at London’s Excel.

The exhibition was an opportunity to view a wide variety of products in one location and the day was spent engaging with suppliers to the domestic construction industry, including flooring, lighting and windows & doors. The AC Architects team found it particularly helpful to check out the kitchen and bathroom displays in person and speak directly with members of the supply network, several of whom are based in Cambridgeshire.

Highlights from the show can be seen HERE
The dining hall of King’s College, Cambridge was the recent setting for the annual LABC (Local Authority Building Control) Building Excellence Awards. Guests at the black-tie event were welcomed by a complimentary drink of ‘Victorious’ Beer, created especially for the occasion.

Anne Cooper attended the dinner on behalf of AC Architects Cambridge Ltd and we’re delighted to report that one of our residential projects was a finalist in the closely-fought category of “Extension or Alteration to an Existing Home”.
Addenbrookes Entrance
As a former editor of ‘Cambridge Architecture’, Anne Cooper was asked to contribute an article to a special edition commemorating 30 years of publication. Anne opted to write about the Addenbrookes site, an area which has seen enormous changes and development during this time. This and other articles looking back through 30 years or anticipating future changes, can be read by clicking here: Cambridge Architecture

Anne’s piece ‘An Inhospitable Hospital’ can be found on page 12 but AC Architects is also mentioned on page 5, highlighting the completion of our work on new, sustainable headquarters for The Conservators of The River Cam.
LABC Award logo
The dining hall of King’s College, Cambridge was the recent setting for the annual LABC (Local Authority Building Control) Building Excellence Awards. Guests at the black-tie event were welcomed by a complimentary drink of ‘Victorious’ Beer, created especially for the occasion.

Anne Cooper attended the dinner on behalf of AC Architects Cambridge Ltd and we’re delighted to report that one of our residential projects was a finalist in the closely-fought category of “Extension or Alteration to an Existing Home”.
Anne Cooper
Anne Cooper, the director of AC Architects, was recently asked to contribute an article for the 'New Hall Society Review and Murray Edwards College Report', which has now been published. A theme of ‘The Creative Process’ features five college alumnae from very different working environments, writing about experiences from their careers.

In her article, Anne writes about the challenges of setting up a practice whilst her children were young; her architectural consultancy for Murray Edwards College (formerly New Hall) and what initially drew her to a career in architecture.
Brick detail
The Autumn/Winter edition of the Cambridge Association of Architects Gazette features an article entitled ‘Another Brick in the Wall’ by Anne Cooper, director of AC Architects Cambridge Ltd. This is an abridged version of an essay originally written as part of a Historic Buildings Course and argues against homogenisation of the Cambridge cityscape through a misguided application of conservation legislation.

The full article can be read here: Another Brick in the Wall
The Team!
AC Architects recently attended an open morning at the Anglia Lime Company in Sudbury, Suffolk.

This CPD event furthered the team’s knowledge of working with and specifying lime. The morning started with discussions comparing the traditional and contemporary materials and the team received guidance on specifying mortars and renders including maintenance requirements appropriate to the work we undertake. A short presentation outlining the lime cycle was followed by having a go at pargeting; applying detailed ornamentation to freshly plastered surfaces. East Anglia is the traditional home of pargeting so the Suffolk location was very appropriate.

A few of us were even able to try our hand at plastering using techniques of both hand float and spray machine- some with more success than others!

AC Architects staff
The team from AC Architects recently enjoyed a trip to two local quarries. This CPD visit, hosted by the Stamford Stone Company, was an opportunity to see the raw block being transformed into masonry and walling stone.

Lincolnshire limestone is a natural stone which has been used since Roman times in a range of buildings including Windsor Castle; King’s College Chapel, Cambridge; York Minster and restoration work to the Houses of Parliament.

The journey between Clipsham Medwells and Swaddywell quarries via Stamford, "the finest stone town in England", offered plenty of stunning examples of this local building material. Seeing the varied character of the stone, combined with a day of glorious Autumn weather made for a memorable office outing.
Rowan model
The imaginative Mitcham’s Models Exhibition culminated in an auction of the various mannequins, raising £3,660 for Tom’s Trust, a Cambridge charity set up to support children with brain tumours.

Where are they now? Having attracted the attention of many users and passers-by in the Mitcham’s Corner area, the models are hopefully still continuing to delight or intrigue those who encounter them in their new settings!

This figure, now proudly owned by Anne Cooper, the Director of AC Architects Cambridge, was created by students and staff of Rowan, a local arts charity for learning-disabled.

For more information about the Mitcham’s Models Exhibition please go to: Mitcham’s Models
For more information about Tom’s Trust please go to: Tom’s Trust
Ely Cathedral
AC Architects recently celebrated success in 2013 with an outing to the neighbouring city of Ely.

A sunny walk with views of the cathedral, followed by lunch at The Old Fire Engine House, was greatly enjoyed by all.
Open Eco Home Detail
AC Architects congratulate Cambridge Carbon Footprint on the recent 4th Annual Open Eco Homes Event. This initiative offers members of the public a unique opportunity to tour low-energy homes and meet the owners. Our own projects have regularly featured in previous events and this year was no exception - please click on CASE STUDY for further details.

This and other examples of sustainable projects can be viewed via the website About Open Eco Homes

Remember to check again in spring for the 2014 event!
Sustainability Commendation
AC Architects were delighted to receive a commendation for our work at 130-132 Chesterton Road at a recent event sponsored by Cambridge City Council, the Cambridge Forum for the Construction Industry and Cambridge News. We have extensive experience in Cambridge-based projects and take great pride in seeing reminders of our work as we go about our daily business, so we are particularly pleased that this is ‘in recognition of their contribution to the buildings and townscape of the City of Cambridge.’
Chesterton Road
AC Architects is delighted that one of our projects, 130-132 Chesterton Road, has been nominated for the People’s Choice award, chosen by the public and part of the new Cambridge Design and Construction Awards. Our brief was to redesign a bay-fronted Victorian house, upgrading the building fabric and improving the overall energy-efficiency. For more details of this eye-catching design, please visit our Residential Projects section.

Archaeological finds
AC Architects Cambridge Ltd has completed work on a new-build house featuring a 5.2m rammed-earth wall, believed to be the tallest in a UK residence. The brief to design a sustainable, low-energy family home led to the use of this ancient low-cost, sustainable technique where soil is compacted into a temporary shuttering.

The rammed-earth structure not only provides thermal mass, but materials can be cheaply and locally sourced, have a low embodied energy and generate little waste. The wall creates an architectural focus, further enhanced in this case by incorporating finds from an archaeological dig at the site.
Green Home
Cambridge Carbon Footprint recently invited practice director, Anne Cooper, to carry out two separate ‘open’ consultations at members’ homes. Anne’s extensive experience of sustainable architecture was put to the test when she conducted on-the-spot appraisals and gave her recommendations for energy-efficient measures.

A Victorian terrace and a 1930s detached house were the respective venues for each of these fully-booked events.
AC Architects at the RIBA
A new RIBA exhibition, guest curated by Sarah Beeney, charts the story of the design and appeal of everyday homes in the UK. It explores the characteristics of a British obsession and the experiments that have shaped how and where we live.

AC Architects work closely with clients to realise their plans for desirable and practical homes. Our recent visit to this exhibition was a chance to put this in context through a history of major influences on housing from the late 18th century to the present day.

The exhibition is showing until April 28th, at the RIBA, Gallery 1, 66 Portland Place, London, W1B 1AD. Admission is free. For full details please go to:
Birdseye view of Mitchams Corner
Practice director, Anne Cooper, has attended meetings of The Friends of Mitchams Corner since their inauguration in 2010. The group was founded ‘ to protect the interests of residents, local traders and others working in the area of Mitcham's Corner, Cambridge.’ Anne has recently become Chair of the committee, reinforcing AC Architects work in the local community.

For further information, please visit
AC Architects at the Hockerton Housing Project
AC Architects recently spent a day at the Hockerton Housing Project in Nottinghamshire - the UK’s first earth sheltered, self-sufficient ecological housing development. All five houses in the project generate their own clean energy, harvest their own water and recycle waste materials causing no pollution or carbon dioxide emissions. The visit was a valuable opportunity to see ultra low-energy homes and lifestyles in practice and offered much to think about.

For further details, including how to visit the project, please go to
Green-Enterprise logo
Anne Cooper will give a presentation to local, not-for-profit group ‘Green-Enterprise’ on Monday 24th October from 7.30-9.30pm, at The Friends Meeting House, Jesus Lane, Cambridge. She will discuss some of AC Architects’ areas of expertise and the work involved in becoming recognised as ‘Green’ architects.

For further details about attending Anne’s talk or information about the Green Enterprise Community, please visit
Meeting image
Director, Anne Cooper, has been invited to join Cambridge City Council’s Building Control Customer User Panel. The panel consists of a wide range of construction professionals including representatives from Cambridge University, architects, surveyors, engineers and building contractors. Meeting quarterly, it provides a forum for distribution of information and feedback between the City Council’s Building Control department and users of the service.
Anne Cooper & Simon Ruffle in the garden of their 'Eco-Home'
On Thursday 2nd June 2011, the ‘Cambridge News’ featured a double-page spread highlighting some of the homes participating in the ‘Open Eco Homes’ event, including Anne Cooper’s own.

(Photograph courtesy of Cambridge Newspapers Ltd.)

Anne has also been interviewed by BBC Look East (televised on Friday 10th June) and The Sunday Telegraph (published 12th June) in connection with this event.

The Sunday Telegraph Property Section, 12/06/2011
Open Eco Homes poster
Practice director, Anne Cooper, will again be opening her own home to the public on Sunday 26th June as part of this year’s ‘Open Eco Homes’ event, organised by Cambridge Carbon Footprint (CCF). Two other eco-renovations designed by AC Architects Cambridge Ltd are also showcased during this event, highlighting our expertise in this area. Please note: all visits must be booked in advance through CCF by calling 0800 512 012.

A case study of the work Anne has carried out on her home can be viewed by clicking on the following link:
Case Study - Home Number 15

Our other eco-renovations can be viewed via
Case Study - Home Number 3
And also
Case Study - Home Number 7

Case studies of all the homes featured during ‘Open Eco Homes’ are available on
Case Studies
as are links to ‘Cycle Streets’, offering cycle route-planning options to keep things as low-energy as possible!
Open Eco Homes Logo
Anne Cooper joins a panel of Eco Experts to answer questions from the public on a wide variety of sustainable issues. ‘Eco Renovation Question Time’ will be held at St Luke’s Centre, Victoria Road, Cambridge, CB4 3DZ from 7.30-9.30pm on Friday 10th June 2011.

The evening will be chaired by the Leader of Cambridge City Council, Sian Reid, and other panellists include local sustainable housing consultants, energy suppliers and authors. Low energy solution stands will be available to browse and some of the homeowners participating in the Open Eco Homes weekends will be on hand to chat about their projects.
The AC Architects team at Ecobuild
AC Architects Cambridge Ltd attended Ecobuild 2011 to keep abreast of the latest ideas and consult a wide range of technical advisors.

Ecobuild is the world’s biggest event for sustainable design, construction & the built environment. It is also the UK’s largest construction event of any kind, open to both industry specialists and the general public.

Of particular interest to the AC Architects team were the guided Timber Tours organised by TRADA (the Timber Research and Development Association), the SIPS (Structural Insulated Panels) Building and the latest improvements in window technology.
AC Architects office
AC Architects Cambridge Ltd is pleased to be hosting the April meeting of the Cambridge Association of Architects.

The meeting takes place at 18.30 on Wednesday 6th April 2011, at their practice offices at 33-35 Victoria Road, Cambridge.
8 new PVs
AC Architects Cambridge Ltd. are keen to keep up to date with the latest technologies and get first hand experience where ever possible. Company director Anne Cooper has had a bank of 8 PVs installed as part of the feed-in tariff initiative in the latest in a long line of low-energy technologies which the director has applied to her own home.

The first eight days of the new PVs saw an extraordinary amount of rain- but there were still 22kWh of energy produced. She will be monitoring the energy production as part of AC Architects’ commitment to giving clients first hand advice.
Designs in progress
AC Architects have taken part in a Design Charette sponsored by Cambridge City Council and organised by Cambridge Association of Architects.

The event was staged at the Guildhall, and mixed Architects with developers, to answer a brief set by Hills Road and CRC sixth formers.

The site was in the Trumpington development area, and demanded “Code 6” homes in the Code for Sustainable Homes rating system. Our team enthusiastically combined flexible living, allotments and microgeneration, creating personal, defensible space for individual households, whilst deliverying high densities- and a comprehensive sustainable solution from roof to ground.

AC Architects Cambridge Ltd. are already working to a standard of sustainability which makes Code 6 a reachable target, and we are looking forward to ever more low-energy challenges from our clients.
AC Architects at CAT
AC Architects have recently visited the Centre for Alternative Technology in Wales. It was a long anticipated visit, given the company’s commitment to low-energy solutions and sustainable architecture.

The visit showed in practice some new low-energy and old, revived building techniques, many of which AC Architects are familiar with, and some of which the company director, Anne Cooper, is planning to show-case in a new, sustainable one-off building.
Highly Commended
AC Architects Cambridge Ltd is delighted to have been awarded a ‘Highly Commended’ certificate in the small organisations category at the recent Cambridge Climate Change Charter 2010 Awards.

Anne Cooper, the director of the practice, accepted the award at a ceremony in the Grafton Centre, Cambridge on the 16th June, in front of an audience which included the Leader of the City Council, Sian Reid and Ian Nimmo-Smith, the Deputy Mayor.
As part of the 2010 Cambridge Environment Festival, company director Anne Cooper will be lending her expertise as part of a panel answering questions on the eco-friendly possibilities for converting your home. Cambridge Carbon Footprint have organised the panel, which includes field specialists from the various areas of sustainable intervention.

The panel will be made up of Anne Cooper (Sustainable Architect), Andy Brown (Sustainable Construction consultant), Tim Acheson (Green builder) and Justin Smith (Council officer and grants specialist). Sian Reid, the Executive Councillor for Climate Change & Growth will be chairing the event. AC Architects Cambridge Ltd. are sure the event will be thought provoking and memorable.

This event also launches the Open Eco-House days, where some of Cambridge’s residents are holding open house days to demonstrate their eco-friendly renovations and designs. AC Architects are pleased to report that some of the houses whose green credentials we have helped realise form part of the Open House line up.
33 - 35 Victoria Road, Cambridge
AC Architects are pleased to be welcoming members of Cambridge Carbon Footprint to their offices this week to explain some of what makes the development sustainable.

The building’s renovation was one of the major winners in the International Green Apple Awards 2007, and has also been commended by RIBA East for its environmentally-friendly design.

The company director, Anne Cooper will be giving a talk explaining the design strategy and the low energy solutions employed. Visitors will be touring the building to see it in operation.
What Will Low Carbon Cambridge Look Like in 2050?

Transition Cambridge Launches Eco Story Writing Competition

More than £750 worth of prizes to be won, sponsored by AC Architects Cambridge Ltd

Transition Cambridge, part of Transition Towns which promotes community action to increase our resilience to peak oil and climate change, has just launched an innovative, eco story writing competition for the local community. They are calling on children and adults alike to send in their stories set in Cambridge in 2050, happily adapted to a new, low carbon society and environment. The competition aims to get local people to think beyond the current oil and climate crises in a positive way.

This competition is open to everyone who lives, works or studies in Cambridge, or within 20 miles of Cambridge. Stories will be judged in three age groups: under 14 (maximum word count 1500); 14 to 17 (maximum word count 2500) and 18 and over (maximum word count 2500). They must be sent in on or before 30 April 2010. Visit for competition entry details, entry form and ideas!

Anne Cooper at CAR
Company Director Anne Cooper has recently given a lecture at ARU. The talk focused on the future of sustainable housing and how the Code for Sustainable Homes and similar initiatives might shape home design. Reflecting one of AC Architects’ principle concerns (sustainability), the talk was illustrated with practical, sustainable approaches already designed by AC Architects. This talk was well received, and Anne has repeated the lecture at Cambridge Architectural Research.
Save Energy, Save Money
AC Architects are pleased to be supporting an initiative to reduce energy use. The current shop window display reflects this, suggesting easy ways that everyone can reduce their energy use, bills and Carbon footprint.
Live Cambridge
AC Architects’ charette proposal for Mitcham’s Corner, Cambridge, is featured in the Cambridge Association of Architects forthcoming exhibition, “Cambridge Live”, being held at the Guildhall, Cambridge from the 25th of June 2009. Details of their ideas can also be found in the Cambridge Architecture Gazette published to coincide with the exhibition.
AC Architects Cambridge at City Council Design Charette

AC Architects Cambridge Ltd have taken part in a Design Charette sponsored by Cambridge City Council and organised by Cambridge Association of Architects.

The event took place at the Guildhall where groups of architects were asked to focus on selected areas of the city felt to be in need of forward planning.

AC Architects Cambridge Ltd chose to look at the area around Mitchams Corner. Their offices are located there – an unusual case of Cimby-ism (Change In My Back Yard).

The proposals looked at simplifying the road layout; at regenerating sites and providing a better link through to the riverside. Pictures of the work displayed are shown here.

Green Apple Award 2008

AC Architects Cambridge Ltd are major prize-winners in the International Green Apple Awards 2008 for the Built Environment and Architectural Heritage. The prestigious Green Plaque was awarded on Monday, 10th November, at a ceremony at The House of Commons, hosted by Patricia Hewitt MP, for the conversion and extension of a group of listed buildings, The Cloisters, at Thetford Grammar School in Norfolk. The Cloisters provide a new state of the art Sixth Form Centre and Drama Studies Centre.

The Green Plaque is awarded annually to select winners of the Green Apple Awards for the Built Environment and Architectural Heritage. In June this year, AC Architects Cambridge Ltd also received the regional Silver Green Apple Award for The Cloisters. The award ceremony took place at the Tower of London. The prestigious ‘Green Apple’ was presented by top botanist and TV personality Professor David Bellamy, OBE. The trophies are awarded annually in recognition of building projects that enhance the built environment and/or protect our architectural heritage.


For a third time, a member of AC Architects Cambridge Ltd is running the RIBA Architecture stall at the Perse School, Hills Road, Cambridge on Monday 17 November 2008, 7-9pm.

This stall, complete with its RIBA banner, information packs and laptop, has proved very popular at past Careers Fairs. Students can collect information on careers in architecture and discuss places to study, as well as checking out websites which are now increasingly useful for career decisions.

They can also see examples of low energy design and historic renovation carried out by AC Architects Cambridge Ltd. AC Architects Cambridge Ltd support the Connexions Work Experience Programme and provide an annual placement for students considering a career in architecture.

The Cloisters, Thetford Grammar School

AC Architects Cambridge have announced that The Cloisters, the new Sixth Form Centre and Drama Studies Centre at Thetford Grammar School, Norfolk, has been shortlisted for a Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) East Spirit of Ingenuity Award 2008 in two of eight award categories – ‘Heritage Award’ and ‘Education & Healthcare Award’. This follows last month’s news that the Cambridge-based practice became one of the major prize-winners in the International Green Apple Awards 2008 for The Cloisters, under the category Built Environment and Architectural Heritage (1).

The Cloisters, Thetford Grammar School

AC Architects is one of the major prize-winners in the International Green Apple Awards 2008 for the Built Environment and Architectural Heritage. The Cambridge based practice has been given the regional Silver Award for the use of traditional skills in the conversion and extension of a group of listed buildings (The Cloisters) at Thetford Grammar School in Norfolk. The Cloisters provide a new state of the art Sixth Form Centre and Drama Studies Centre. This accolade follows last year’s Green Apple Award for the environmentally friendly design of the practice’s own recycled Victorian office building in Victoria Road, Cambridge. The award ceremony took place at the Tower of London last week (Monday, 2nd June). The prestigious ‘Green Apple’ was presented by top botanist and TV personality Professor David Bellamy, OBE.

David Bellamy, OBE presents the Green Apple Award

AC Architects Cambridge Ltd has been announced as one of the major winners in the International Green Apple Awards 2007 for Environmental Best Practice, for the environmentally friendly design of their own recycled office building in Victoria Road, Cambridge. The ceremony, which took place at the House of Commons in London last Friday the 9th November, recognised some sixty projects from across the UK and further international projects which were presented with prestigious ‘Green Plaques’ by author, broadcaster and environmental campaigner David Bellamy, OBE.