The clients requested a family garden, to include a lawn for the kids to play and a separate sophisticated dining area for entertaining. A large barbeque was important, as well as a water feature to include fish. One problem to overcome was an unfavourable view of the neighbour's sheds, which needed to be masked without raising the height of the boundary fencing. The clients also wished to retain a children's playhouse at the end of the garden.
Flooring throughout this space was in rectangular dark slate tiles laid in a stretcher bond pattern to match the interior of the house. The main section of the garden benefits from a variety of bespoke features designed to make maximum use of the space. A major focus of the garden is a water feature consisting of a sunken rectangular pool bisecting the space. Deep and wide enough to allow the client to add fish at a later date, this pool is topped with removable walk-over grating and fed from the left side by a stainless steel water blade installed into the front of a decorative tower constructed from yellow stock brick, railway sleepers, coloured perspex and slate.
Seating in the garden is provided by two large 'sofas' constructed from chunky railway sleepers, positioned to face each other across the water feature rill. The sofas are complemented by a matching coffee-style table straddling the rill between them. Large (2 metre clear stem) cordylines planted in the ground at either end of each sofa, frame the seating to give the area a sense of privacy and seclusion.
To the right of the seating area and opposite the stainless sleet blade, there is a bespoke barbecue/fireplace. Constructed from yellow stock brick and utilising the existing stone lintel, this barbeque features two separate cooking areas with space between for a firepit.
The main area of the garden is screened from the remainder of the space by a tall, wide 'shelving unit' screen. Constructed from railway sleepers, this structure features individual alcoves which have been filled with a variety of decorative materials, perspex screens and ornamentation. Directly in front of this there is a flush level herb bed.
Beyond the shelving unit screen is the second, child-friendly section of the space. This comprises a rectangular section of artificial lawn edged by a slate paved pathway, with the playhouse nestled within the centre of a planting bed at the end of the garden.
Planting in the second section of the garden includes stepover fruit trees down either side, back planted by climbers. In addition, an Acer and a Mimosa were planted around the children's playhouse. The pathway around the lawn offers the clients opportunity to place planted pots at a later date if required.
Climbers conceal the existing fence on the left hand side, with a bespoke screen (approximately 6 metres long) comprising tall timber posts joined with stainless steel tension wire and decorated with small panels of coloured perspex was erected above the top of the fence to break up the view of the buildings to the left.