AN ACCESSIBLE FAMILY GARDEN

7 years ago we installed a new patio and driveway for a lovely client with mobility issues in Maidenhead. We were recently asked to return to help in carrying out further modifications to improve accessibility in the garden. An exciting brief we were honoured to accept.

The garden itself was a good size, with a large lawn and woodland area at the back which gave significant tree cover.  The clientโ€™s vision was to transform the garden into a great space for the whole family to enjoy.

  • Tree maintenance

  • Ground levelling

  • Raised beds

  • Self-binding gravel paths

  • Accessible greenhouse

What we did

As with nearly all landscaping projects, the preparation is essential.

First, we tackled the trees. We removed a number of self-seeded smaller trees and lifted the crowns on several mature trees. This allowed more light into the back section of the garden.

Next a large amount of clearance was carried out. This was followed by levelling the garden with grade A topsoil. Before sourcing a shade tolerant turf that would thrive in slightly shadier areas of the lawn.

We then installed paths which were finished with self-binding gravel, a product that has a firm surface for walking or wheelchair use. Self-binding gravel is commonly found in National Trust gardens, so is ideal for use by people of all ages and physical abilities.

The paths created a loop around the garden, which initially leads to a new accessible greenhouse and raised beds for vegetables. After this, the path loops round to a small seating area then back round to the far side of the patio.

It’s all about the detail

Most of the hard work goes into the excavation and sub-base preparation. For the paths and patios, we excavated to allow for 150mm of compacted sub-base material. Once this material was installed, granite sett edgings were laid to edge the path. The self-binding gravel then infills and is compacted to form a good firm walking surface.

The timber framed greenhouse was constructed and fitted out to provide a pleasant environment for vegetable growing. An activity planned to be done together as a family, alongside the planting of the raised beds.

All the while, the access was being considered so that it would be an area that could be useable for the whole family.

A good sized garden, with loads of potential, has now been transformed into one that can be enjoyed by all ages, whether they want to get to work, or just relax.

"Thames Valley Landscapes have completed our landscaping project with a clear understanding of our requirements . Theyโ€™ve gone out of their way to ensure that the garden is accessible , fit for purpose and is aesthetically pleasing . Professional from initial discussion to completion , with flexibility built in to ensure the garden meets our needs."
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An accessible family garden