The garden at Victorian former rectory had already undergone a lot of (somewhat irregular) hard landscaping before the current owners moved in, was filled with an assortment of trees and shrubs and sloped across the house. As such, it had become rather chaotic and was lacking in balance and a sense of order and flow. The client brief was to bring order back to the space, create defined planting areas, an inviting dining terrace and entice the owners out into the garden. In short, to make it a garden to enjoy.
Despite the confusion, it remained a lovely garden, full of dappled sunlight. The client is a sculptor, which guided the new design towards a layout that would enable her to showcase her work. We looked at the gardens of famous sculptors, such as the informal Cornish garden of Barbara Hepworth and the formal Rodin garden in Paris. This led to a design featuring two adjoining lawns and a walkway through shrubs. The planting is bold and simple, including rows of hornbeam and cherry trees, underplanted with osmanthus mounds. Two pergolas offer screening and shelter, while also providing a focal view from the house towards sculpture. Irregular wall heights are made level, and new retaining walls help level the site.