Eco-building and Off-Grid Accommodation – with Steve Golemboski-Byrne

Lackan Cottage Farm is a permaculture farmlet and off-grid holiday accommodation that is situated close to the Mourne Mountains in Northern Ireland. It is Northern Ireland’s only off-grid holiday accommodation. On the 29th November 2016, I travelled to Lackan Cottage Farm to meet one of Northern Ireland’s most inspiring people in the area of sustainable living – Steve Golemboski-Byrne.

In just four years, Steve and his wife Claire, assisted by volunteers, have renovated a rather delapidated cottage, added an educational living space, renovated an existing second cottage for rental accommodation, planted and established large vegetable beds and an orchard, put in large polytunnels, created a reed bed system for their greywater, and more – with everything set up to run from off-grid renewable energy. Almost all of what they have created has been completely done using locally sourced materials and using natural building methods such as strawbale, cob and local timber. In addition to this, they have a four year old daughter, hens, dog and cats – and two horses, one of which is a draughthorse that Steve is training to do the jobs that a tractor would do.

In this show, recorded on the 29th November 2016, I talked with Steve about some their off-grid ecobuilding achievements here at Lackan Cottage Farm.

To listen to this programme about Eco-building and Off Grid Energy Generation please click on http://www.accessradio.org/Player.aspx?eid=7bc0d608-e815-4dc3-b74c-f846782a7448

To listen to other Eco Living in Action radio shows on the Otago Access Radio Website go to http://www.accessradio.org/ProgrammePage.aspx?PID=d6c5fa93-1644-4811-acef-71386373b70a

For more information –

This show was originally broadcast on the 1st December 2016 with the help of Otago Access Radio 105.4FM. Eco Living in Action is sponsored by Sustainable Dunedin City.

Steve Golemboski-Byrne, eco-builder and co-owner or Lackan Cottage Farm

Steve Golemboski-Byrne, eco-builder and co-owner or Lackan Cottage Farm

The Classroom - a learning and community space where permaculture workshops have been held.

The Classroom – a beautiful learning and community space where permaculture workshops have been held. Heated with a rocket mass heater that burns dry slender branches with great efficiency.

The Mass Rocket Heater - wood is very efficiently burned within a double chambered drum, to heat a long earthen seat re-radiating heat into the room.

The Rocket Mass Heater – wood is very efficiently burned within a double chambered drum, to heat a long earthen seat re-radiating heat into the room (and bottoms!).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Green roof on the Classroom. The roof is insulated with strawbales to make a square round house!

Green roof on the Classroom. The roof is insulated with strawbales to make a square round house!

This is a wattle fence - quick to make and a great use of local resources.

This is a wattle fence – quick to make and a great use of local resources.

 

 

Interior of the Off-Grid Holiday accommodation. The internal ambience of the accommodation is created using the principles of Human Centred Design

Interior of the Off-Grid Holiday accommodation. The internal ambience of the accommodation is created using the principles of Human Centred Design

Photovoltaics provide power for electricity. These panels were found discarded by a church who had upgraded theirs. All they needed was a good clean!

Photovoltaic panels provide power for electricity use. These panels were found discarded by a church who had upgraded theirs. All they needed was a good clean to work well!

This draughthorse was very neglected and in poor condition. With Steve's care and equine expertise, he has brought it back to excellent health and is training it to be his 'farm tractor'.

When Steve found him, this draughthorse (Rain) was neglected and in poor condition. With Steve’s care and equine expertise, he has brought him back to excellent health and is training him to be his ‘farm tractor’.

 

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