CONSTRUCTION of the first eco manufacturing facility in Wales to build high spec energy efficient homes has begun in Welshpool.

The homes, built by PYC Construction and Insulation, a family business, can cut heating bills by up to 90 per cent.

The building of the 600 m2 factory on a 1.4 acre site purchased from the Welsh Government at Buttington Cross Enterprise Park and the investment is backed by the Wales Economic Growth Fund and will create 19 new jobs.

The Passivhaus buildings are the world’s fastest growing quality assurance standard for low energy buildings.

The benefits of Passivhaus include: 90 per cent reduction in heating bills and carbon emissions; big improvements in healthy fresh air quality, comfort levels and productivity.

PYC, founded in 1993 by brothers Jasper and Ben Meade, currently operates from converted farm buildings at the family home at Meifod.

They are now taking their business to the next level at the new, purpose designed factory. Here their houses can be pre-fabricated off-site, minimising weather disruptions and onsite delays, resulting in shorter build times, increased productivity and reduced waste.

Jasper said: “This is an exciting time for our business and we appreciate the support from the Welsh Government which was fundamental in enabling us to take the business to the next level. 

“Our company has built up considerable knowledge and experience of Passivhaus systems, insulating with Warmcel many of the first PH offices, schools and colleges and houses in the UK, such as Canolfan Hyddgen, Machynlleth, and UEA Enterprise centre, Norwich.

“We are passionate advocates of the benefits of Passivhaus building and want to promote it as a sustainable and affordable option for all housing. 

“Our new facility means we will be able to expand, bring all the work in-house, target new markets and create new jobs setting the route forwards for the delivery of these buildings.” 

Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure Ken Skates said: “The new facility – a first for Wales – is a welcome addition to the construction industry which is one of our key economic sectors.

“I am delighted support from our Economic Growth Fund is enabling this investment to go ahead, helping PYC develop and grow its business, while creating skilled jobs in the area.”

PYC has already employed an architect and architectural technician and now offers a complete design and build service. This turnkey service will help social housing providers, councils, community land trusts and housing associations as well as the self-build market to provide high specification homes.