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Front garden around new shed and gate



  • LiriodendronLiriodendron Posts: 7,939
    I assume you've done your homework, @stephenroberthall, and putting a shed in your front garden is permitted in your area... I think the rules vary depending on where you live.
    "The one who plants trees, knowing that he will never sit in their shade, has at least started to understand the meaning of life."  Rabindranath Tagore
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 50,152
    No - I meant the tree in the 'grassy' bit - where it meets the paviours - at the edge of the scaffolding.
    Am I completely wrong about the site? From your drawing, the tree further away [in line with the door] is about 6 or 7 metres from the house, which that one definitely isn't   :)

    You'd struggle to find a pent roof shed with the doors on the lower side. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Yes, there's a slight risk there, but one of our neighbours has a bike shed in their front garden (a metal Asgard) so there is a precedent, and it's a small secluded cul-de-sac, not a conversation area. We'd have a good chance of retrospective permission if someone objected, so long as we do it nicely...
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 10,792
    edited January 2022
    @stephenroberthall, it occurs to me that you could put a gutter along the side of the shed nearest the fence and connect this to a waterbutt to avoid any damp issues. However, if you have large deciduous trees nearby, then you are going to get leaves blown down on a regular basis into the gap between shed and fence (I speak from experience) which is a pain.

    I've  just had another look at your two photos and also your plans. The area as shown in the photos does look rather small to accommodate a 6ft (2 m) long shed between the paving and the tree? I hesitate to question your measurements but.......
    I'm also having second thoughts about advising paving. Do you think it would look better overall if block paving to match the existing drive was laid? It is permeable by the way so no need to worry about having more of the same.  Just a thought.
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 7,705
    edited January 2022
    I would imagine most councils would be sympathetic about a proper bike shed in the front garden if it's not a conservation area. They are, after all, supposed to be encouraging us  to get out of cars and onto bikes as much as possible. A bike shed is, of course, somewhat different to a regular shed. They might not like that idea quite so much!

    I think a regular pent bike shed will be fine in that area. As @Lizzie27 suggested you could have some guttering along the back to collect water if you're concerned about it getting damp at the back.

    We have a local company who make sheds, bike sheds, home studios etc etc. They have standard designs but are always willing to slightly customise them for customers (I had a non-standard size garden shed made for a very small premium). 

    I wonder if it's worth getting in touch with somebody like that to discuss having a shed with no floor (in the same way that greenhouses usually come without a floor). It would need to be anchored in some way but might solve the problem re manhole access - you just take the bikes out!

    As far as surface materials go I think you're right to want to keep the number of different materials used out there to a minimum. Something that tones with the drive for the whole area would probably work. 

    We push bikes over shingle all the time - it's not a problem although you wouldn't want to be getting towards pebble sized. 20mm would be ok.

    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • Good evening, I'm so grateful for all the comments, it's really helpful.
    @Fairygirl, I'm sorry for not clarifying the site. The big trunk away from the house is indeed a deciduous tree, and does provide welcome shade in the summer, important as the garden faces south west so gets a lot of direct sun in the afternoons. I'm not sure what type of tree it is, I have found a picture from last June that I will post. The garden in total is about 3m wide and a little over 5m long. The tree is over 4m away from the house, not 6-7m as you correctly say. There is a scale bar on the plans, l may have made some minor errors on the measurements last night, but I'm pretty confident in them. I'm a civil engineer by profession and need to be able to draw!
    @Lizzie27, you're right that the site is small, so much so that a 7 or 8ft long shed may not work, but a 6ft long shed just seems to fit being 2m away from the house and not extending beyond the currently grassed area. The shed would be set back from the tree line by the fence so it wouldn't be right next to the tree although the canopy would go over it. I think we can avoid tree branches and tree roots, although there's not much wriggle room on the shed position and I agree there would be leaves to manage. I don't mind that as the back garden is only 40ft so it's not like I have an enormous garden to maintain. A bit of work is fine if the garden works well. I also agree that a gutter at the back of the shed is essential if the pent slopes that way. In terms of the surface, I am very keen to have a permeable surface. I agree that the driveway paving looks nice, but I'm pretty sure that it's not permeable? So I'd need a lot of convincing to use it. I'd feel like a bit of a vandal turning a soft green space into a sea of paving. The bike shed - until it gets its green roof - makes me feel a bit guilty as it is!
    @topbird, yes I do want to minimise the number of materials. Sticking to a combination of concrete slabs and brick paving units would be the minimum, but I think will look too austere. By replacing the grass with a suitable flexible permeable surface - and extending this under the tree - I could stick to three main materials. Based on all this feedback, I an thinking mostly 20mm gravel, with some larger sizes at the bottom around the tree, interspersed with plants around the tree area. I am tempted by resin bound permeable gravel, but it seems to be five times the cost and only laid by specialist contractors, and wouldn't work around the tree area as it needs some kind of firm subbase. Our neighbour two doors down has white gravel around his tree, so maybe I should match this colour.
    I would be very interested to know which local shed company you're thinking of, not sure if the forum rules allow any companies to be named?
  • Here's a picture of the tree taken last June. There are taller trees behind it on the public footpath behind the fence.
  • And here's a picture taken the previous November from a bit further back, showing a neighbours tree with some white gravel at the base.
    I'll also put a bench under our kitchen window for the spring so that there's somewhere to enjoy the afternoon sunshine.
  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 7,705
    @stephenroberthall - the company I used were

    Easy for me to deal with as one of their their main showrooms is about 2 miles away. I think they are predominantly an E Anglian company so they may or may not be useful to you.

    I'm sure there will be somebody else in your area if not.
    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 50,152
    That's much clearer @stephenroberthall. I think it was just the angle of the photo that was confusing me, as it looked as if the tree in the pic was much nearer the house and the fence.  The drawing made it look as if there was a 2nd tree, but it's probably my error in not reading your plan properly    :)
    It's certainly isn't a very big space to play with. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
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