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A different level


Claygate: north-facing, post-extension garden.

A shallow garden across the width of the house was in a bit of a state after a house refurbishment. Our task was to create a multi-purpose space that resolved a substantial drop in level. There are two sets of bifold doors, both needing easy access to the patio and a sunken circle that used to house a large trampoline.

Dividing the garden diagonally allows free movement in and out of the house while balancing the division of paving and lawn to please everyone. The level change is pushed away from the house maximising the patio space and providing steps to sit on, as well as a home for a lovely Prunus Tai Haku, now the focal point through the house, from the front door.

'Deb's design was simply amazing - she thinks out of the box, with some real quirky tweaks that we love...'


The 4m concrete circle, prone to water-logging, was given a soakaway. We recycled this space and built a beautiful circular bench from oak sleepers and backfilled with gravel, to make a fire pit area and extend the use of the garden into the evenings. There's room for everyone.


The planting, in oak-sleeper raised beds, is bright, bold and insect-friendly, flowering throughout the seasons. A dark fence makes a great foil for this and disguises repairs and some new panels.


The result was a bespoke, relaxed, family garden that can be used for any occasion. Pretty, practical and easy to maintain.


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