Simon Payne Talks to CNN About Sustainable Tree House Living

Blue Forest Director Simon Payne was interviewed by CNN Style to discuss sustainable tree house living, and how these treetop hideaways are contributing to the eco-friendly trend. The article was published this month, which you can take a look at here. Blue Forest are openly committed to applying sustainable tree house principles and we are renowned for creations that enhance and reflect their natural surroundings.

“Although everyone wants to hear about [cutting-edge technology] such as renewable energy solutions, actually insulating your building really well, using the natural resources of the sun and the wind for cooling and heating and using simple things like low-energy lighting probably make the biggest difference in the design of a new building.” – Simon Payne says as he talks to Katy Scott.


The most effective way we can make a Blue Forest tree house sustainable is by using support stilts rather than a host tree. Stilts can be erected to support the structure, putting minimal or no strain on the surrounding trees. To keep the magical treetop feel, we can simply keep the structure close to the branches or perhaps build an exterior deck safely around any neighboring trunks which is far less invasive. The branches and trunk of the tree can still be a key design feature, weaving in and out of the overall structure. Not only does this mean the tree isn’t harmed with metal brackets and fixings but it also allows the tree room to grow and change.


Wherever possible Blue Forest use sustainably harvested timber (PEFC or FSC certified), so we’re confident in the knowledge that the wood we use comes from sustainable sources. “You can find out exactly where the tree was grown, when it was cut down and how many trees were planted to replace it,” says Simon.

Although not always the most glamorous solutions, sometimes simple details can have the most impact. For example, we can use low energy technology, such as L.E.D light bulbs, or reduced capacity flush toilets, etc. In addition to having energy saving solutions, a tree house should be consciously designed into the fabric of the building. The simplest example of this is structural insulation – if a building is well insulated less heat energy is required to keep the internal climate comfortable and subsequently less energy is lost to the outside environment. As a team we’re passionate about the great outdoors and will continue to create designs that not only celebrate the natural world, but help protect it too.