The Well House

A Sunken Courtyard Garden Between 16th Century House and Barn

A compact sunken garden dropped into an existing courtyard between 17th century buildings where a large existing yew had been removed by the clients. The clients wanted to use this previously redundant space between the main house and the recently-converted barn annexe, to provide a dining area in a secluded spot outside their kitchen.

The Brief

This was a simple little garden but the clients wanted to keep the ancient stone and brick paving surrounding the area, with its undulating surface and uneven levels. The clients were also keen to re-use existing materials on site, hence the use of Victorian clay tiles and knapped flint in the construction.

The Design

The simple little sunken garden slotted perfectly into the existing space and used materials found on site in the construction of the steps, paths and plinth for the sculpture, with tiles on edge used to delineate the path between house and barn. Around the new garden the existing ancient paving had to be taken up, re-laid, and hand-dressed to form a new edge to the upper patio area.

The garden was enclosed in a low box hedge with a small herb garden to serve the adjoining kitchen, with the main emphasis on providing a family seating area for outside dining. Taller box hedging to one end provided a perfect green alcove for a bespoke sculpture.