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Sloping Back Garden, Headington

A semi-detached 1930s house in Headington, Oxford, with steeply sloping back garden. The ‘before’ pictures illustrate the concrete upper patio and the 4 ft drop to the grassy garden. The steps are steep and the garden can be seen at a glance – effective deterrents to further exploration. The backs of neighbouring houses are the dominating features.

After re-designing, the upper patio is contained by low trellis giving a secure feeling at the top, and a new circular patio is laid in a sunny part of the lower garden, approached by a curving path and hugged by raised beds with perennials, roses and climbers. The oval shape of the lawn draws the gaze down into the garden where the trellis screen gives a backing to the seat, with a bark chip path leading behind to the compost area. (Later: an espaliered apple tree is supported by the trellis, now weathered to silver.) The new design is warm and inviting, encouraging the viewer to descend and enjoy.

View from top patio, before redesign
View from top patio - steep drop now enclosed
View into garden, before redesign
View into garden - with new sunny patio
Old view of top patio
Top patio now redesigned
Lower garden - before redesign
Lower garden - with new raised beds and curved patio
View towards house, before redesign
View towards house - after implementation
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