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Highlights from Grand Designs Live 2022

Grand Designs event

On a sunny weekend at the end of April, we took a team trip to London for our first-ever visit to the Grand Designs Live expo – one of the UK’s biggest events for home building, improvements and renovation. 

More than 500 companies were featured at this nine-day event, which was hosted by TV presenter Kevin McCloud. 

It posed a great opportunity for us to delve into areas related to our architectural design work, but also to learn about new materials and products that would benefit us as a company – knowledge we can pass onto our clients back in the South Wales and Hampshire regions. 

Finding new ways to use typical materials 

What did we take away from it? The typical materials we use – as we specify in our regs – evolve each year, so we learned how we can harness these materials in different ways. 

Sustainable options 

An area we spent a lot of time in was Green Living Live, which featured sustainable products and services – like a range of different cladding options, which would definitely be something we’d consider in our design work. 

One thing we loved was the ICF block from Insul Hub – building blocks made from recycled wood fibre and cement, and natural mineral oil is added so that they don’t rot or burn. 

Another advantage of attending these sorts of events is that it reinforces the fact that we’re taking the right approach in the work we do: There was a lot of talk about structural insulated panels (SIPs), which are eco-friendly, prefabricated builds that we started using in the last year or so. 

They’re cheaper than your traditional build – and because the cost of everything is going up, they’re becoming more popular. It’s something we’ve been recommending to our clients as an option, and one that we’re glad to see being used more and more. 

Gearing up for next year 

Our time in London was a good laugh and a much-needed chance to step outside of our day-to-day work. And it’s something we’re definitely keen to take part in next year. 


Image 4: Richard, Meja, Chelsey, Paulina, Ryan, Chris, Kaja and Sam on their first-ever trip to Grand Designs Live. 


Image 3: Grand Designs Live host Kevin McCloud giving a talk at the Grand Theatre. 


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