Homes Tour was a ‘fascinating journey’
Transition Matamata held a Grand Earth House Tour recently, Caroline Mason reports.
An earthship and a home made of straw bales were just some of the properties included in a special Eco Homes Tour organised by Transition Matamata.
The tour, included a group of 26 people sharing in a fascinating trip visiting unique and sustainable homes around the Waikato.
Baigent Motors very generously assisted with the provision of three vans.
The day began early with a drive to an ‘Earthship’ house in the hills behind Ngaruawhia.
Earthship is a concept originally developed in New Mexico and employs the use of tyres packed with Earth.
This house used 2500 tyres in its manufacture and the north wall of the house is made from a glasshouse resulting in an amazing selection of vegetables growing right inside the house.
The house also made extensive use of recycled materials from right around the Waikato and the Bay of Plenty and was built for less than $30,000.
Our second stop was at ‘Bon Marie’ in Newell Road Tamahere, a very large, elegant home and business premises made from
‘‘This house used 2500 tyres in its manufacture and the north wall of the house is made from a glasshouse.’’
straw bales. This house has magnificent plaster walls which took four men over two years full time to plaster over all the bales. The music room alone has six tonnes of plaster on its walls.
We then visited a property in the countryside outside Cambridge with three beautiful B&B cottages. The construction of each cottage employs variations of mud brick and adobe construction.
The final stop on this fascinating journey was at the ‘‘Olive Grove’’ near Cambridge, built of rammed earth but this time clay mix was compressed into wooden shutters in situ.
‘Olive Grove’ was originally built on a bare quarry site, hard to believe now, as but there are stunning gardens, olive trees and an olive press.
Transition Matamata is delighted that this was such an interesting and fun day out, a great way for us to complete our activities for 2016. Seasons Greetings to all.
The earthship’s north wall is a glasshouse and a large selection of vegetables grow inside the home.