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forty hall facade

forty hall facade

The Forty Hall Estate landscape restoration project reportedly attracted £1.8 million of investment from a Heritage Lottery Fund grant.

I arrived onsite after the consultants and landscape designers had completed the planning stage as the contractors were about to break ground, and after the Hall itself had been repaired and refurbished through an earlier, generous HLF grant.

Regrettably, five years had elapsed since the public and onsite garden staff had been consulted about the landscape restoration proposal.

The role was to increase awareness and understanding of the local and onsite heritage and be a ‘face’ of the pre-planned restoration project: a job I would not recommend to my worst enemy.

From the surreal to the unbelievable, the down right vicious and ignorant to the plain nasty: I witnessed the petty-minded, party political game playing that has put me off local politics and Council politicians for life.

Add to that a resident unhinged animal rights protester, verbal and physical threats and the unwelcome advances of a certain stakeholder representative, I lasted just over a year before submitting my resignation.

Oh Enfield: who says the suburbs are dull !

forty hall woodcut forty hall misty urn

fulham 05

A charming and historic site where I had the privilege to work with over 100 volunteers maintaining the grounds, tending the bee hives and growing produce for a well known Mayfair restaurant. I designed and implemented a turf labyrinth as conceived by the parishioners of All Saints Church.

 

fulham 01 fulham 02 fulham 03 fulham 04
fulham 06 fulham 07 fulham 08 fulham 09restaurant.

garden design offord cluny 01
garden design march 04

A generous site for a new build property and great brief: full-on TROPICAL ! I can’t wait to build this one as the planting palette selection includes many tropical-looking yet hardy ornamentals, and a few tender sub-tropicals which will be over-wintered in the heated glasshouse.

 

The bespoke garden gate and outdoor kitchen as designed will involve different local artisans.

Cambridge award ceremony

A selection of references from previous clients and colleagues, and certificates from academic institutions etc.

cornflower

My first dissertation (MA Hons Landscape Architecture) questioned to what extent habitat creation schemes were posing a threat to existing ancient grasslands? Using field surveys I undertook on various grasslands in Cambridgeshire, Gloucestershire and Northamptonshire, academic literature and my own seed mix trials, I fostered an understanding of responsible wildflower-rich grassland creation.

The moral concerns of local genotype pollution., distribution of non-endemic and non-native species, and the misguided view that we can create facsimiles of ancient grasslands are not, in my opinion, aiding our environment.

The study of vegetation communities and self-regulation/competition can, however, be instrumental in creating sustainable planting designs and solutions.

For my advanced diploma (historic environment) dissertation, and my current thesis (archaeology), I am gathering field-name, place-name and primary documentation evidence (Medieval charters, perambulations, land registers) to record the age of certain habitats on certain areas (Huntingdonshire, Isle of Wight, Essex, Middlesex, Hertfordshire) to increase our knowledge of where habitats developed under human influence.

I hope my findings may be of interest to masterplanners and decision makers in how we maintain, manage and enhance our local environments.

Agatas garden masterplan

Thanks to the recommendation of interior designer Andreas Kubicek (www.fjinteriordesign.com), I was asked to return to Poland to survey and design this family garden in one of Warsaw’s affluent wards.

Construction should commence in 2013, pending planning permission.

Siedlice 01

This partially derelict building was my base for my first three months in Poland. Whilst the owners were abroad I was asked to look after the property and create flower and vegetable gardens, tame the old park and orchard terraces and remove as many carp from the ponds as possible (using the villager’s numerous Anglers).

The restoration work was carried out on the house by ‘men with big machines’. The JCB destroyed much of my work in the garden days before I left.

I also raised four Geese, my only companions with whom it seemed I could communicate! They were served for dinner after I left the site!

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Display gardens 10

The following are a selection of various gardens developed from 1999-2001 in and around Cambridgeshire, England.

Clients included the Editor of Country Homes, Business Woman of the Year 2000 and a political advisor to Prime Minister John Major.
Various themed gardens were developed as a show-case for the Garden & Leisure Group’s/England’s largest garden centre at Wyton, Cambridgeshire, England, which included hand carved granite sculptures commissioned and created in China and shipped to the UK…. positioning such heavy works proved challenging!

courtyard niemodlin

This charming restoration of a cluster of farm buildings into a family home (a family including five dogs) required a hard standing treatment for the courtyard between the home and garaging. The proposal uses on-site discovered and salvaged materials additionally creating an intimate garden space with outdoor kitchen, wood pile store and water features.