Derelict windmill is transformed into a cutting-edge and carbon negative contemporary home

A ruined 19th century windmill in Cambridgeshire has been given a smart eco-makeover with the help of efficiency specialists Eco Installer.

The Grade II listed Tower Mill in Little Downham, had fallen into disrepair, with no sails, windows or cap, but has now been sympathetically developed into a stylish and modern eco-friendly home while retaining the beauty of its wind-powered past.

The team at Eco Installer worked hand-in-hand with Freeman Brear Architects who developed the initial design and details such as a glazed viewing area and mezzanine which provide uninterrupted views over the surrounding countryside and allows night-time observation of the big Fenland skies.

As well as its architecturally-stunning exterior, it has been designed with energy efficiency at its core with a biomass boiler, rainwater harvesting system, and a mechanical ventilation system keeps the house warm in the winter and cool in the summer and re-uses up to 95% of the heat that would have otherwise have been lost.

Roland Gurner from Eco Installer said: “Our homes and the way we construct them will have a huge role in ensuring we enjoy a more sustainable future. Tower Mill is a prime example of how technology is helping to drive sustainable solutions and helping to address both environmental and economic concerns.

Its 10-kilowatt photo-voltaic roof panels – which charge a state-of-the-art storage battery system – triple-glazed windows and heavily insulated walls all increase the mill’s energy efficiency and prevent unnecessary waste.

The mill’s owner Henry Martin said: “I was keen to invest in various renewable technologies to produce a property with the lowest possible carbon, running and maintenance costs. The team at Eco Installer really excelled themselves. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them for future work and have every intention of using them to help build my daughter’s house.

Architect Judith Brear said: “We worked closely with Henry – and Eco Installer, who are responsible for many of the clever, energy-saving installations at Tower Mill – to create the home of his dreams – an exciting, contemporary, comfortable house which costs little to run and which requires minimum maintenance.