ProjectKnepp Bio Barn




A biomass barn made from local materials provides the green energy behind the idyllic Knepp Castle Estate

A biomass barn made from local materials provides the green energy behind the idyllic Knepp Castle Estate

Knepp Castle Estate is a 3,500 acre Grade 1 listed estate that has been leading the way in regeneration and restoration projects, becoming a pioneering example of rewilding and environmental conservation.

To further enhance the estate’s impressive green credentials, Sir Charles Burrell appointed Studio Bark to design a bespoke biofuel system using entirely local, natural materials.

Knepp Bio Barn viewed from the approach

How the biomass barn works

The barn incorporates a 100sqm chip store, a large boiler room and a number of associated machine stores. It will be fueled with waste wood chip from the estate from routine thinning, leading to a dramatic Co2 saving.

The ash produced by biomass boilers is high in potash which is valuable as a top dressing by farmers or as a component of composts by horticulturists. If ash cannot be disposed of in this way, or if the quantities are small, it can be disposed of to landfill with other wastes.

Knepp Bio Barn clad in Douglas Fir timber
Waste wood chip to fuel Knepp Bio Barn
Douglas Fir timber cladding at Knepp Castle Estate
The green oak timber frame of Knepp Bio Barn
Knepp Bio Barn side view
Timber tile cladding at Knepp Castle Estate

Natural and Local Materials

Studio Bark sourced most of the construction materials locally or from the estate woodlands themselves. The roof tiles were reclaimed from a nearby building that had been demolished, while main barn was clad in locally sourced Douglas Fir which is reflective of similar barns in the locality.

timber cladding at Knepp Bio Barn

The Future of Knepp Bio Barn and Knepp Castle Estate

Knepp Bio Barn sits sensitively within this exceptional landscape, as both a functional and aesthetic landmark of the pioneering work at Knepp Castle Estate.

The barn sensitively nods to the history and local tradition of the site, while supporting a flourishing, low carbon future.

Related Projects