Acme clay tiles used for pioneering ‘zero bills’ home

Acme clay tiles used for Pioneering Zero Bills home

An innovative, affordable zero bills home created by architects Zed Factory, is using Acme clay plain tiles from Marley Eternit to help meet strict sustainability criteria.


The demonstration house launched at the BRE Innovation Park in March 2016. It will be one of the first properties to be assessed under the new Home Quality Mark (HQM), which gives credits for the use of responsibly sourced building materials with the lowest environmental impact.


Zero Bills aims to be the first commercially viable home with no net annual energy bills and enough surplus electricity to power a small electric car. Built with traditional construction materials, Zed Factory has incorporated high levels of energy efficiency and renewable energy into the design. A mansard roof has been created with a clear integrated photovoltaic roof on one side and Marley Eternit’s Acme single camber clay tiles in Red Sandfaced and Red Smooth on the other.


Rehan Khodabuccus, from Zed Factory, explains: “As well as looking at energy-efficient products for the home, we also needed to consider the construction materials themselves to make a building with the lowest embodied carbon possible. Responsible sourcing was also very important, not only from an HQM assessment point of view but also because we wanted to maximise the use of materials from the UK to minimise the carbon footprint. We wanted a clay tile to create a traditional aesthetic as a contrast against the solar PV on the other side of the mansard roof. We selected the Marley Eternit tiles based on their responsible sourcing and sustainability credentials.”


The Acme single camber clay plain tiles have a ‘Very Good’ BES 6001 responsible sourcing accreditation, an A+ rating under the BRE Green Guide and low embodied carbon. As well as the demonstration home, the tiles are included in the specification for the first 96 Zero Bills Homes planned to be built on a site owned by the Sir Arthur Ellis Trust at Newport, near Saffron Walden in Essex.


The Zero Bills Home is a pre-designed, engineered and costed housing system with a wide range of custom build design options. The concept is aimed at low to medium density developments with a range of house types available from a kit of parts, delivered to site in containers for easy assembly.


Daniel Weait, specification manager at Marley Eternit, adds: “We are delighted to be providing tiles for such a pioneering zero bills development, which could not only help to meet carbon reduction targets but also tackle the need to increase the output of quality homes in the UK. The homes offer a sustainable and cost-effective alternative that still uses traditional construction materials and local labour and minimises cost. This blend between traditional materials and renewable technologies creates homes that could quickly and affordably be replicated across the country, yet can be sympathetic to local vernacular.


“Responsible sourcing is becoming an increasingly important part of specification and we are proud that using our products helps architects and housebuilders to get credits under the environmental section of the Home Quality Mark. As one of the first homes to be assessed under the new HQM scheme, we hope to see the Zero Bills Home being offered at developments across the country.”


Marley Eternit’s range of clay plain tiles is now available in 24 different colours to help match local vernacular and meet planning requirements. For further details and samples, go to


For more information about the Zero Bills Home, visit



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