The Arts and Crafts Garden, Ilkley

About This Project

A challenging brief to turn a sloping, wooded garden into a beautiful, formal space for entertaining and summertime enjoyment.

The existing garden benefits from sweeping views over Ilkley, but has been modified over many years, resulting in a series of awkward spaces with no sense of zoning or flow. The space behind the house is dominated by a rockery, a sloping lawn going into woodland. To the front messy woodland planting alongside a driveway gives no sense of occasion as you enter the property, and a front lawn slopes and is accessed by poor steps from the main terrace.

Tasked primarily to deal with the rear garden space, our design is a modern interpretation of an Arts and Crafts garden – the period when this garden was first created. This style is typified by elegant garden ‘rooms’, lawns with planting at the surrounds, bespoke detailing and use of local materials.

The proposed rear garden is reached by a series of double steps and planting areas, planted with yew buttresses, roses and with water flowing into a trough. As you step into the upper lawn, there is a focal point gazebo – perfect for looking out over the countryside beyond. There are two oval lawns. The East Lawn – intended as an area for children, with a planting palette of blue, green, white and yellow. And the West Lawn – intended as an adult space with an oak pergola, seating, copper rear screen and warmer planting of incorporating oranges and rust browns. Copper beech hedging surrounds the space, formed into buttresses. Beech beehive trees add further formality and drama. Both lawns have hidden teak storage boxes, to store cushions, drinks and children’s toys.

To the front of the property, the extended terrace features new broad steps (with buttress yew hedging) down to an amphitheatre lawn. The driveway is bordered by hedges with woodland planting behind.

The scheme with be extensively lit at night, adding drama and impact.

The images show views of the proposed garden with beech and copper beech hedging.


An animation of this garden can be viewed HERE.