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Read & Weep!

January 10, 2018

By Paul Homewood


Sometimes people send me stuff.


You might have thought that the Selfbuild & Design magazine was a serious, if slightly dour, publication. It seems however that the Editor has been at the Kool Aid!






They have obviously never had snow in Burton-on Trent before!

  1. January 10, 2018 11:50 am

    Hawking has joined the climate cranks. They seem to be sounding more desperate the longer any supporting evidence fails to show up.

    ‘Stephen Hawking warns Earth will become a hellish Venus-like world with unbearably hot temperatures if climate change continues on its current path’

    Read more:

    • TinyCO2 permalink
      January 10, 2018 1:14 pm

      Would anyone know if he started down the road to dementia? Even assuming he’s writing his own speeches now. When my Dad had his first stroke, nobody but the family could tell because it didn’t affect his casual speaking or physical abilities but from being a business consultant and computer buff his logic and technical knowledge became that of a car park attendant.

  2. Adrian permalink
    January 10, 2018 11:52 am

    Sorry, I didn’t weep. Just the usual shrug.

    Is there something wrong with me?

  3. bob nielsen permalink
    January 10, 2018 11:58 am

    Sad the editor of that Mag is obviously a moron. Here in Oxfordshire we get snow in the winter for about 5yrs in a row and then no snow in winter for 5yrs. Regular as clockwork – or the 11yr solar cycle! They get the same in Shropshire.
    He’s also wrong about Building regs not getting tougher. They now mandate thicker and more insulated walls and floors and ceilings and windows than 20yrs ago, which have added considerable to building costs and thus house prices. All make sense in conserving heat as we cycle through our cold winters, and saving money as our energy bills skyrocket under lunatic Govt anti-energy policies.So i dont know what rock this twit’s been hiding under.

    • January 10, 2018 12:04 pm

      And you haven’t mentioned the increased CO2 emissions caused by manufacturing all this stuff (not to mention in some cases mining for it) and all in the name of reducing CO2 emissions!

      No indeed you couldn’t make it up!

  4. Stonyground permalink
    January 10, 2018 12:19 pm

    It’s great fun though isn’t it? Watching the alarmists trying to claim that the cold is due to warming and is exactly what they expected. If they expected it then why didn’t they say so before it happened rather than afterwards? If, as seems likely, the weather enters a 40-50 year cold cycle, the excuses are just going to get funnier and funnier.

  5. Sonja A Boehmer-Christiansen permalink
    January 10, 2018 12:36 pm

    We live in an era of political correctness….alas; just another example. Sonja

    • waterside4 permalink
      January 11, 2018 8:34 am

      Nice comment thank you.
      Got me thinking – the world ‘ correct ‘ in my book means something is right.
      I think we should rebrand PC as PW (politically wrong) like the warmongers did to global warming.
      What do you think?

  6. January 10, 2018 12:43 pm

    Through WWOOFing in various countries I have been/helped at a number of these self-build projects.
    A good proportion of self-build is eco-housing, cos self build tends to be rich people and they are are attracted to the idea and it’s felt that prebuilt homes are not to the same ecological standard that you can build yourself.
    The first thing is that most of these homes seem to much bigger/grander than conventional homes, which to me is contradiction, cos a £30,000 prebuilt home has way less materials in it tan a £100,000 self build.

    It’s a step from Self-Build to Eco-Home to GreeDream-thinking, to Climate Change-alarmism the narrative goes that way. The more dire you portray Climate Change the more of a saviour you fell for building your own eco home.

    BUT BUT at a quick check this magazine seems way less Climate Change alarmism than I expected eg they never tweeted about Climate Change
    And have only tweeted about Green-dream once since since a spurt in 2012.
    Their website doesn’t mention CC and has only 2 articles on being green (10 Ways to Make Your House Greener).

    • Ian Magness permalink
      January 10, 2018 2:36 pm

      And don’t forget to fix on some of that really nice cladding as put on London tower-blocks – it’ll save you load in heating costs and keep you all nice and toasty.

      • rapscallion permalink
        January 10, 2018 2:41 pm

        Cruel. Very cruel. Oh, how I winced. Then I laughed. You are a very naughty boy Ian 🙂

  7. January 10, 2018 12:54 pm

    That house looks like a couple of “double-wides” stood on their ends. What a lack of pleasing style. Heck, what a lack of style period.

    • January 10, 2018 3:05 pm

      Yes, my self-designed and self-built log-store is more aesthetically pleasing to the eye – and nobody else can see it.

    • HotScot permalink
      January 10, 2018 9:42 pm


      Not really representative of many self builds, but architectural excellence costs.

      And of course the UK is hardwired into particular building styles, mostly red brick or Tudor monstrosities. I believe Scotland now has a government mandated ‘preferred style’ of house so as not to corrupt the landscape.

      You might thank your lucky stars that the US isn’t saddled with the architectural ‘history’ the UK endures.

      • Ben Vorlich permalink
        January 11, 2018 9:07 am

        Ironic that the Scottish Government sits in one of the ugliest buildings in Edinburgh.

      • January 12, 2018 2:05 pm

        These “innovative” and “green” folks seem bent on weird styles which are jarring to the senses–I see them here, but trees help. I also attribute it to the lack of overall wisdom within that community.

        We have whole communities with what I call “faux chateau” which just does not go with the landscape or the American style. Also, people have these large houses with almost no land. Curiouser and curiouser to quote Alice.

      • HotScot permalink
        January 12, 2018 8:19 pm


        Come to the UK where land is at a premium. Large houses on tiny patches of land is the norm.

  8. Terbreugghen permalink
    January 10, 2018 1:12 pm

    While I’m a climate skeptic who follows a number of informed blogs like this one, I do think we could be more intelligent about our use of resources. No, we’re not “destroying the earth,” but we ARE changing the chemistry of the atmosphere on a grand scale, among other things. So, agreed we can discard the climate alarmism, but maybe it’s not such a bad thing to be intelligently conscious about our ecological and resource footprints.

    • Gerry, England permalink
      January 10, 2018 1:55 pm

      Improving efficiency is sensible to make the most of our resources but the majority of their ideas are moronic.

    • jim permalink
      January 10, 2018 2:34 pm

      ‘we ARE changing the chemistry of the atmosphere on a grand scale’. What supporting scientific evidence do you have for that statement?
      There are many things we can do to improve our environment, sensible pragmatic ones, but statements like this are just not helpful.

    • January 10, 2018 3:07 pm

      When I was a lad, the atmosphere was much more heavily polluted with “chemicals” than it is today.

      • HotScot permalink
        January 10, 2018 9:47 pm


        Ditto. Lead laden petrol,. I blame my bad temper on it, I was a youthful car nut in the 70’s and not only inhaled copious quantities of the stuff, but drank plenty of it whilst syphoning petrol tanks with a rubber tube and suction, mine.

    • Colin Brooks permalink
      January 10, 2018 3:32 pm

      Talking about sensible use of resources, have you ever heard of the principle of ‘The Conservation of Matter’?

    • catweazle666 permalink
      January 10, 2018 7:34 pm

      “but we ARE changing the chemistry of the atmosphere on a grand scale”

      Atmospheric CO2 concentration up from 0.03% to 0.04% in around a century is scarcely a “grand scale” in the great scheme of things IMO.

      In any case, recent NASA research data appears to indicate that it appears to be an unmitigated benefit.

      • HotScot permalink
        January 10, 2018 9:50 pm


        As far as I’m aware, global greening is the only observable manifestation of increased atmospheric CO2.

        Everything else is computer models or scientific guesswork.

  9. Thomas Moran permalink
    January 10, 2018 2:00 pm

    Golly, I wonder why they have peaked roofs in countries that never get snow?

  10. January 10, 2018 2:05 pm

    People? I thought I was one of your biggest fans!

  11. January 10, 2018 3:10 pm

    Also, when I was a lad growing up on the edge of the Peak District it was a very poor winter when we didn’t have lots of extreme winter weather – going sledging every year was something we looked forward to.

    • HotScot permalink
      January 10, 2018 9:57 pm


      70’s Scotland had innumerable frozen winter inland Loch’s we used to Curl on. No more.

      But I suspect suitable conditions will return over the next 20 years or so. Probably too late for you and I, but I might get pleasure from watching my grandkids enjoying it.

      Having said that, I don’t believe anyone has come close to proving a warmer planet will be a worse planet.

  12. Nigel S permalink
    January 10, 2018 6:58 pm

    Should have stuck to the town’s most famous product. Perhaps all the CO2 put him off.

  13. mkelly permalink
    January 10, 2018 9:30 pm

    He mentions the series Planet Earth II. In the episode on cities Attenbough admits that animals live in cities because of the heat island effect of 2 C or more. UHE biases the temperature readings over time.

  14. HotScot permalink
    January 10, 2018 9:32 pm


    I get the magazine as I have been considering building my own house for retirement in Scotland.

    It’s mostly, as usual, an advertorial for companies selling vastly over priced materials and services to, as you say, wealthy people, I’m not wealthy.

    The point is that building a house shell shouldn’t be, and isn’t difficult or expensive providing you get past the bullshit.

    The Americans are realistic about it and build some very good, very cheap ‘eco’ houses.

    And if you Google ‘Rocket mass heater’ you’ll find a largely home made, wood burning heating system which reaches such a core temperature that the exhaust is almost only water vapour and CO2. And when I say home made, I mean it’s made from an old oil drum, some fire bricks, and Adobe. A tad out there, but literally dirt cheap, safe, effective and incredibly efficient. will sell you a 3 bedroomed house kit for £60k (supply your own land) to which single bedroom modules can be added for £12k each. That’s supplied and erected in a single day. The numbers are from memory.

    Not bad, a 5 bedroom house for roughly £85k plus, say, £100k for an exclusive, large plot of land in Dumfries and Galloway, the Borders or perhaps Perthshire.

    It can be done, but for the draw of big cities.

    • Ben Vorlich permalink
      January 11, 2018 9:19 am

      I had a work colleague who, about 30 years ago, build his own house. After the walls and roof were installed by the manufacturer he did all the rest virtually single handed. His wife left him during the early years of the project and he brought up two children and built a house over the next 10 years. He ended up with a really nice house, from which he downsized recently.

      I can recommend Perthshire as a place to live – unless you want a sea view. I’ve never found big cities particularly attractive, Perth is as big as you need!

      • mikewaite permalink
        January 11, 2018 1:53 pm

        Perthshire has the feeling of America’s “big country” at the moment . But will it be turned into an industrial wasteland with wind farms at every turn in the road like the Upper Clyde and the Southern Uplands as viewed from the M74. That area always had a fascination for me; wild, wet , empty and mysterious. Not any more alas.

      • HotScot permalink
        January 11, 2018 7:04 pm

        Ben Vorlich


        My wife is originally from Greenock, so right on the Clyde. I’m from North of Glasgow so a short hop to Perth, which I love.

        There’s no reason I can’t personally construct an Oak framed structure, simple process, then contract out the rest, plumbing, electrics etc. Done right, it’s a viable route to a great house.

  15. Dorian permalink
    January 11, 2018 11:52 am

    If these hypocrites really believe the world is getting warmer, then why do they still build homes with sloping roofs! Surely if there is going to be no snow, you have no need to build roofs at angles that allow for snow to fall off (that’s the whole point why sloping roofs were invented.)

    Let these clowns put there money (nay, homes) where their mouths are. Build homes with flat roofs and with no eaves. After all, if you want to have an effective solar panel set up, it is better to have flat roofs than roofs sloped to one constant angle. Not to mention also the unnecessary requirement for attics, they’re useful as buffer zones which help to inhibit the cold to downstairs (not to mention to add pointless insulation batts).

    The utter nonsensical hypocrisy of these people!

    As you said, SelfBuild and Design is slightly dour. It may be slightly dour, but it is totally oxymoronic – their designs are totally contra to their beliefs!

    Furthermore, take a look at the house in the photo. The damn thing has its outside walls rendered. You render walls for two main reasons:

    – Protect from excessive dampness: you only need to render a house in high rainfall or snowfall zones. If you believe in global warming, there is no need to render you home. Natural brickwork or stone, is always more attractive, but in snowy climes they are dreadfully cold.

    – Enhanced Insulation: if done correctly, the extra gap between the mortar and brick work provides better thermal and drying conditions. Once again if you believe there will be no more snow fall, you don’t need to render your home.

    Another thing I noted. He has the egress to the house separated and closed off with glass! Oh come on! You do this only in the COLDEST of climes. Separate closed off entrances are the norm for cold weather. So why design that into a home, if you’re not expecting snow or cold weather!!!!

    BWAHAHAHAHAH! This is all too hilarious!

  16. Rowland H permalink
    January 11, 2018 12:06 pm

    Too bad the news of the house built mainly of straw which ended up as a pile of ashes!

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