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The Hollies & Old Library Cottage, Belper - Sustainability Commendation

DHBT Architecture Awards 2023


Sustainability Award


Commendation: The Hollies and Old Library Cottage, Belper

Architect: Indigo Architecture

Client: Tanya Spilsbury



This project is the repair and conversion of a former library in Belper to commercial and residential uses.


The building was originally built as a house in 1840 by Strutt to attract a doctor to the town for the millworkers at Belper Mill, adding the lodge on the drive as a separate doctor’s surgery in 1908.


The front has been converted from the former library use back to a 3-bed house. The rear of the main property and the lodge have been repaired and converted for commercial uses, including a physiotherapy clinic, yoga and Pilates studio and offices.

Original features such as stained glass windows and fireplaces have been retained but to update the building for modern uses, the interior has been fitted to a very high modern specification.


Substantial insulation and an air source heat pump system has been installed to reduce carbon emissions and energy costs for the new commercial users, with a De-carbonise grant from Derbyshire County Council. The result: a modern use to secure the long term character and maintenance of this historic building.


The judges were impressed with the sustainable approach taken to this project, which is a fantastic addition to the town.













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