A Long, Family Garden with Climbing Wall and Studio
"Nick and Doug made redesigning our garden completely hassle free and the end result is incredible. They hit every single point of our design brief first time and then delivered the results quickly, efficiently, on budget and to the very highest standards. They have been great to have around and we cannot wait to see how the garden grows and matures over the years - a great investment, thank you!" - Simon & Claire, TW1
The clients of this long garden in Twickenham, which was photographed during its first season, asked for a space that, whilst focussing on the needs of their young children, also provided great entertaining space.
When viewed from the fabulous new kitchen extension by @archwk, the eye was drawn to the increasingly inward angle of the left hand boundary. This had the effect of making the garden appear narrower than it actually is. The solution was to use mature plants and trees to soften the angle along the entire length of the boundary.
We divided the garden into four areas; a large dining terrace leading off from the house, a lawn with corten steel edged raised borders, a large play area with nest swing and climbing wall, and finally, a secluded seating area with BBQ and garden studio.
As well as the dining table and cantilever parasol, the terrace has a seating area just below the large Crittall-style picture window of the kitchen diner extension – perfect for morning coffee or pre-dinner drinks.
The large window, with built in seating, creates a perfect picture frame view of the garden. Being a busy family, the garden is low maintenance, thanks to the carefully chosen planting scheme and the automatic irrigation system. The garden also has remote controlled lighting that creates the most magical atmosphere once the sun has set.
The beds of the central lawn area is edged with corten steel, which references the large corten steel planters on the main terrace.
The play area is one of the key features of this garden. We used our own take on ‘Crazy paving’ to give an element of fun to the space. The large climbing wall is used by all the family, as even the youngest members have already got the climbing bug. We designed it in such a way that that the climbing configurations can be changed and a large crash mat can be stored behind it.
On the other side of the play area is this nest swing, which all the family enjoy. In the future, it will also be possible to swap the swing for an igloo hammock….. perfect hideaway for those teenager gatherings!
Finally, and leading off from the play area, is this seating and BBQ area. The vertical posts, as well as being an architectural focal point, allow for the adults to keep an eye on the kids whilst they are playing.
This part of the garden is now very secluded and is used not only in the day, but also at night, when the BBQ and the fire bowl are lit.
The garden studio has multiple uses, as well as being the perfect home office. We always try and incorporate several different materials into any garden space. Here we have used Dutch pavers in the sunken seating area, with a boardwalk of composite decking leading to the garden studio. The corten steel edging that runs through the garden from the top terrace, is also used here, and adds extra interest and continuity to the space.
So, if you would like a garden that can go from this…