Sovereign House, Leeds

Constructing Excellence

GRAHAM as a responsible, sustainable Principal Contractor are passionate about delivering lasting impact. Our environmental mission is ‘to help protect and improve the environment, conserve resources and tackle climate change for the benefit of current and future generation.’. This is fundamental to how we do business, and these principles are shown during the refurbishment of Sovereign House for Leeds Building Society.

From the outset, Leeds Building Society wanted to deliver a building that operates with no reliance on fossil fuels (gas, coal, oil) and turn an existing asset into a sustainable low carbon, energy efficient building. Rather than build a new building, with their ethos of sustainability, carbon is already embedded into the project. Selecting an existing building was a key factor in this as the greenest buildings are the ones that already exist.


Constructing Excellence


– Key focus during the design process on the environmental aspects to try and produce an energy efficient building with a low carbon footprint. GRAHAM used these principles set out by the client and embedded them within the construction stage of the project.

During the construction stage we achieved:

– Offset of the direct carbon emissions produced on the project
– Used local supply chain – 60% of the workforce was selected within a 30 mile radius of the area
– Recycling as much of the waste material as possible, with some of the material coming back into the building as up cycled product e.g. glazing recycled into worktops
– Direct Carbon Emission = Project target was to produce <11.4 Tonnes of CO2e per £1M project value. Actual performance was 3.1 Tonnes of CO2e per £1M project value
– Water Usage = Project target to produce <98 M3 of mains water consumption per £1M project value. Actual performance was 95.74 M3 of mains water consumption per £1M project value
– Waste Generated = Project target to produce <6.5 Tonnes of Construction Waste per 100m2 Gross Interior Floor Area. Actual performance was 4.0 Tonnes of Construction waste per 100m2.
– Landfill Diversion = Project target to divert >90% of construction waste from landfill. Actual performance was 98% diversion of construction waste from landfill
– 100% of energy used was sourced from renewables. This power was validated under The Renewable Energy Guarantees of Origin (REGO) scheme
– 17.5 Tonnes of Timber waste was collected by Community Wood Recycling. Equivalent to 0.2 paid jobs created, 0.4 people trained and 9.0 tonnes of C02 saved.


Constructing Excellence Constructing Excellence