Despite or perhaps because of our unreliable climate, I encourage easy access to the garden: if it is difficult to go outside, we will not take advantage of good weather. For this reason in my design work, I encourage balconies, French windows and garden rooms/conservatories.

I usually design with natural materials, to use whatever the site offers (trees, plants, levels etc) and adapt the garden to the house – treating the outside spaces as “rooms”. Normally I use timber pergolas to define the spaces and provide structure-planting and a Mediterranean “feel”; our own allows light in winter, shade, flower and scent for the rest of the year. Often I will suggest a quite formal hard-scape, naturalised and softened by planting.