Work under way to build UK’s greenest vets’ surgery

Demolition of Oddfellows Arms in Bryn
Demolition of Oddfellows Arms in Bryn

Work has begun to transform a disused pub into one of the borough’s most energy-efficient buildings.

Chris Copeman, 46, owner of Bryn and Golborne Veterinary Centres, is set to open a new centre across the road from his existing surgery on Downall Green Road on the site of the former Oddfellows Arms in Bryn. Having worked as a vet for 23 years, Chris is also a qualified “Passivhaus” consultant and has designed the new building himself.

It’s quite an investment for the area. I hope it’s something that will be good for the community

Chris Copeman

Passivhaus, which is popular in German and Belgian architecture, is a type of building technique designed to lower the energy needed for heating and cooling whilst improving air quality levels and comfort.

Chris said: “I have owned the building for a few years and I thought long and hard about what to do with it. It’s quite a big deal to demolish a building and I haven’t done it without the proper thought. One of the things we want to do with the new building is make it very sustainable.”

Designed to be as energy efficient as possible, the timber-framed building will also be insulated with recycled newspaper.

It will be the first building of its type in the area and the first veterinary surgery to use these techniques in the UK.

“It’s quite an investment for the area,” Chris added. “I hope it’s something that will be good for the community. We have asked a lot of people for their views. Knocking down a pub in particular is quite something and I have tried to be sympathetic towards that.

“Passivhaus means that it is designed to be really efficient so that you hardly need any heating in the building because it relies on the insulation. We are just too busy for the building we are currently in.”

Demolition is now complete and Chris hopes it will be finished and ready to use in around six months’ time.

This will be Chris’ second surgery as well as the existing Golborne centre.