Contemporary family garden with garden room

Menston, Yorkshire

Copyright Melissa Morton /overview of design for contemporary family garden with garden room

THE BRIEF Peter and Kerrie moved into their house in Menston, Yorkshire four years ago, inheriting a scruffy and tired garden. After having major renovations inside the home, they were ready to commission a design for a contemporary family garden with a garden room. A key driver for the garden design was to convert (and extend) an under-used garage to a garden room and storage area.  They also wanted comfortable and secluded seating areas with a contemporary feel for relaxation and entertaining.

THE CONCEPT We began by creating an enhanced space that would appeal to all members of the family, focused around an upper terrace by the back door as a special haven to hang out in. This was paired with a pergola on a lower terrace.  The pergola was aligned with the architecture of the house by centering the structure on the house bay window.  This enhanced the visual connection of the garden when viewed from inside the home. The planting design is low-maintenance but striking, with strong forms of topiary and specimen trees, including acers, providing four-season interest. 


Contemporary family garden with garden room:
> New secluded decked terrace close to the back door for easy access for adults and/or teens to chill out (left)

> Screen fencing with pleached trees for privacy 
> Bespoke pergola with posts aligned to frame the view from the garden room
> Raised bed below the bay window with low maintenance planting to soften high elevation of house
> Retaining stone wall added to match house style and accommodate change in levels 

> Access route to link front and back gardens with guard rails to increase safety along steps to lower garden
> Casual hangout area for teens in the north corner of the back garden with benches and firepit (centre)
> Separation of the front and back gardens introducing an arched gate and evergreen hedge (right)


> The ground level needed to be lowered by approx. 0.8m to create the right threshold level for the new garden room
> Access routes between the room and the house simplified, based on desire lines
> Trees for the pocket border next to the garden room were included in the design to create a sound barrier to traffic noise.  These would be underplanted with an inviting mixture of topiary and ground cover plants of various textures