What is

building naturally?

Building naturally is a free online directory for the UK & Ireland's natural building sector, run by volunteers. 


building naturally

Hempcrete construction
Hempcrete construction
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Breaking soil for rammed earth walls
Breaking soil for rammed earth walls
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Straw bale construction
Straw bale construction
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Our mission

To promote widespread use of natural materials in the design and construction of buildings in the UK and Ireland, through our online directory. 

Buildings are responsible for about 43% of CO2 emissions in the UK (DCLG Feb 2013), which has led to a focus on improving energy efficient building design and minimising operational emissions during the lifespan of buildings. In addition, there seems to be a worrying increase in health issues associated with many conventional houses

By using natural materials, the construction industry has a strong opportunity to reduce CO2 emissions and related environmental impacts, create healthier buildings and develop better local economies by using locally produced materials where possible.

If you're interested in adding your company to our directory or would like to get in touch, we'd love to hear from you. Our directory is free for all to use, but we welcome donations to support the voluntary work that we do.

Email us at info@buildingnaturally.co.uk

Core principles

These core principles are a simple guide to understanding environmental sustainability for the built environment.​

Natural materials

Using materials, existing in or derived from nature, in their raw state, or requiring minimal processing for use in construction.

Embodied Energy

Using low levels of energy in all aspects of production of a product or service, including minimisation of the extraction of raw materials, processing, packaging and transportation.


Creating vapour permeable buildings, which naturally manage moisture. This  results in helping to create healthier living environments.


Using materials and energy from sustainable sources that are constantly renewable and regenerated, to ensure that no resources are depleted. 

Healthy Environment

Reducing VOCs, CO2 emissions and other greenhouse gases released during material manufacture, construction and building use.


Designing and building to reduce requirements for materials, energy and space. Utilising the properties of the materials and construction methods.

Social Equality

Encouraging and supporting the balance of gender and ethnic diversity in the workplace both on site and in the office.

Circular Economy

Creating a positive footprint by designing and building for continuous cycling, and generating no waste. Products should be reclaimed, reusable, recyclable or compostable where possible.

Sharing Knowledge 

Increase knowledge and skills in natural sustainable construction for future generations on a local and national level, focusing on accessible building methods.


 We believe that the construction industry can help create a better future by decreasing the use of high-energy materials and techniques and moving towards building with

natural and local materials. 


There are many approaches to sustainability in the construction industry, but building naturally is one of the best ways to ensure projects take into account all the principles of long-term environmental, social and economic responsibility.