Self Build Architects

Working as architects in Eastbourne our new detached house on a challenging site is nearing completion.

The site, as with many other potential sites in and around Eastbourne, was the garden of a residential dwelling. Planning permission had been achieved by the owner for a bungalow several years earlier. The brief was to obtain planning permission for a larger more contemporary dwelling and increase the value of the site.

This was achieved and the project is now nearing completion.

The road is on a hill and the site itself slopes in two directions and is not square. This, alongside building in proximity to other dwellings and the potential issues of overlooking, formed some of the challenges that were successfully overcome.

The construction method is also of interest being ICF (Insulated Concrete Formwork), chosen for its flexibility, speed of construction, energy efficiency and airtightness.

If you are looking for architects in Eastbourne please feel free to contact Shape Architecture to discuss your project.


Link to ICF Blog:

Link to Self-Build Blog:


What ICF Product Should I Use?


Among the array of ICF options available, Robin opted for Nudura. However, the market offers a variety of ICF brands, each with unique features and benefits. This underscores the importance of thorough research to select the most suitable ICF system based on project requirements, budget, and personal preferences. Nudura is one of the biggest names in the realm of ICF construction. Founded in the late 1990s, Nudura has become a leading manufacturer of ICF systems, and its products are utilised in various residential, commercial, and industrial construction projects.

Robin participated in a training session provided by Nudura, during which he acquired knowledge about assembling forms, preparing for concrete pouring, and arranging rebar. This hands-on experience proved invaluable for diving into ICF work. However, it’s crucial to emphasise the significance of undertaking the ICF process under the guidance of seasoned experts. There’s simply no substitute for well-honed expertise in this field; and there were plenty of people along the way keen to help and offer assistance.


Why The Slow Adoption of ICF In The UK?


While ICF has garnered significant attention in the construction industry, its adoption in the UK remains comparatively limited. This can be attributed to factors such as unfamiliarity among builders and architects, as well as potential misconceptions regarding the complexity of working with ICF. As the benefits of ICF become more widely recognised, its use is gradually gaining momentum.


What Are The Key Considerations When Using ICF?


Embarking on an ICF project requires careful consideration. One critical aspect is ensuring precise setting out. It cannot be stressed how important it is  to Seek professional advice to execute this crucial step accurately.  The involvement of competent personnel is essential to ensure an error-free process. The kind of concrete pump employed holds significant importance. Given that this technology isn’t as commonly employed in the UK, it becomes vital for both the concrete supplier and the pump operators to possess a good grasp of the procedure. Their familiarity with the process is pivotal for its successful execution.




Robin’s journey with ICF in his self-build project showcases the transformative potential of this construction material. Here at Shape Architecture Ltd. We have a inhouse experience and expertise with this construction methodology and are happy to discuss this with you if this is something you would like to explore with your construction project.  Please feel free to contact us at Shape Architecture at 01273 648 342 or 

ICF Blocks
Assembly of ICF Blocks
Forming Windows on ICF Blocks
ICF Blocks
Layers of ICF Blocks