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a woodland hillside garden on Ilkley moor

Concept design | Ben Rhydding, Ilkley

The Brief

Our clients, who had recently moved into their new home, wanted to rethink the outdoor space and commission a professional garden designer to create a space that they will really enjoy.  their priorities were:

  • To have different places to sit, to appreciate the location of the garden and enjoy the views in sun or shade.
  • Main patio for hanging out, as a socialising space – as this area is in a sunny location. Entertaining friends and family for 6-8 people.
  • Exercising/meditation space.
  • Plants! neatly shaped with good evergreen structure as well as interest throughout the year. Flowers, please! 
  • Encourage birds and insects
  • Winter appearance is just as important due to the many glass windows and doors

The site

The south facing garden is on a steep slope rising up from the house.  The Cow and Calf rocks and Ilkley Moor can be seen from the back of the house. 

The garden had been previously landscaped at various times, and after the house was extended by the previous owners.

A lot of mature conifers dominated the view and the existing planting was just green most of the time.  There was little else for interest.


Key features

An improved route to the uppermost terrace with space for a summerhouse and deck.

Main patio next to house for hanging out, for entertaining friends and family – with options for sun & shade.

Mid terrace extended for 2-4 people to sit and enjoy the moor views to the north

Curved steps replace existing awkward ones to ease journey between steep terraces. 

The Design

  • A welcome entrance into the back garden & lower terrace, and a pergola for dappled shade 
  • Curved steps of elegant proportions to access an extended mid terrace for upto 4 people
  • Steps to uppermost terrace improved for safety and comfort.  An extended decked area with a new summerhouse
  • The existing redundant side garden has been given a sense of purpose with a new enclosed seating area for two people, to enjoy a snack in the sun at coffee / lunch time.  
  • A water feature included which can be viewed from inside the house all year round
  • Planting introduced at the house terrace to soften the outlook from the house all year round

Next phase

A new planting scheme for the borders is currently underway and will be implemented in phases.

Existing Garden
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