Bee Rowan has been working with straw and running on-site workshops for 20 years in the use of natural materials for new builds. She is a passionate advocate and teacher in the use of local, low impact materials to create durable, healthy and thermally efficient buildings. Before setting up Strawbuild, Bee was co-director and head of training for the strawbale UK organisation amazonails for over a decade. She has been involved in over 200 hundred strawbale builds run as workshops, and gained RIBA (Skills) accreditation for all her courses. Bee has taught as a regular visiting lecturer at the Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) and taught their in-house residential straw bale building course for over a decade.
She has been UK representative on various European Partnership programmes in the development and promotion of natural building materials, and recently developed and delivered with her colleague Stafford Holmes, a training programme in lime and lime stabilised soil for flood resilience for over 100,000 houses in flood affected Southern Pakistan. As part of earthquake resilience in Nepal, she is currently working with humanitarian organisations to bring the training to India and Bangladesh. She has co-authored a Training and Reference Manual ‘Building with Lime and Lime Stabilized Soil’ and is the UK partner in a European team promoting pre-fabricated straw bale panel systems. Together with CAT and Aberystwyth University, she is building the first miscanthus strawbale building, here in Machynlleth.
Cover photo by 101visions from their film celebrating Bee's work: