How will construction materials be used to ensure we Build Back Greener?

One of a brand new series, as part of our Challenge Networks, this half-day event focused on innovations in material production, reduction and re-use on construction developments. The session showcased new perspectives on traditional building materials with future-focused examples of new products. The scene was set to enable unused materials to become resources either on another site or off-site.

Our key note speaker, Greg Slater, Head of Design, Decarbonisation and Environment at Treveth Holdings Ltd. rounded off the morning’s talks with a Call for Innovation from Cornish businesses in the race to Net Zero. One example on the day was the use of timber framed panels packed with hemp for new homes. Hemp was widely used in Cornwall’s history to make rope for fishing vessels, now, with the burgeoning medicinal CBD industry, the wood-like waste from the plant is once again being purposed as a resilient material, that has actually absorbed carbon from the atmosphere in its creation.

Greg inspired positive change by showcasing the whole life Net Zero design for the current Treveth developments, which have been nominated for a Cornwall Sustainability Award 2021.

“We want to see a Net Zero Cornwall by 2030, we have a journey ahead of us and we need to start that journey right now.” – Greg Slater, Treveth Holdings Ltd.


Hosted by Tevi at the stunning Trewithen Estate, we were flattered to be welcomed by Sam, the current estate executor, who also founded Ilex Construction with a vision to deliver a genuine improvement in the quality and sustainability of the built environment we create. Nathan Mabbett, Director of Ilex Construction, presented the idea of a ‘Second Cycle App’ to that could be used by anyone inside or outside the construction industry to make use of unused materials. Nathan included some eye-opening statistics on how many new, unused materials are dumped into landfill!

Ransi Bandara’s ground screw products at Dara Group 7 were a popular subject with attendees and garnered lots of interest for their immediate utilisation in reducing the amount of concrete currently used for building foundations. Ground Screws are remarkably re-usable for permeant and temporary buildings.

A breakout group session was facilitated for the online audience and in the Court Room by the Tevi team and our colleagues on ARCA. Having listened to the ideas from our speakers, the groups discussed what are the next step changes for the industry and what needs to be done now to affect change. Suggestions on getting stories of people talking action were common in both settings. This could be communicated via radio stations, videos and case studies. Another key suggestion was identifying and collating like-minded companies along the supply chain that clients could find and select for their projects.

The day closed with a lovely lunch at the beautiful Tea Shed Café who opened especially for us – many thanks!

The next installment of the Sustainable Construction Challenge Network is due in mid-March. Until then, Tevi are working with Construction Excellence Hub: Cornwall to deliver their ‘Clean and Green Workshop’ at the Green Build Hub on 18th February 2022 – POSTPONED DUE TO COVID-19.



Second Cycle App(video at 19:20)

Stop Digging – Low Impact Foundations (video at 40:55)

A Call for Innovation(video at 1:05:55)


Related Tevi Blogs: May 2020 – Build Back Better

Future workshops and events will be published here on our events page Events Archive – Tevi