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Loch Tay


Description of site:

The site is an 18th century house and associated garden ground in a rural setting some 2 miles to the north of the town of Penicuik. The site is at an elevation of 250m and generally east-facing, largely protected by woodland but with open views to the south east. The house itself is the north wing of a large house which has been subdivided into three and is of fine architectural quality (Grade ‘B’ listed according to information supplied by the client). A converted stable and a nearby lodge house add to the sense of a small rural community. The approach to the house is a narrow drive, leading off the main drive to a courtyard on the north-east where the old stable-block is situated. This block contains a communal garage and other residents have a right-of-way on the drive in order to reach this. The drive cuts off a small enclosed section of the garden from the main part of the property and some method of visually uniting the two was called for. The rear garden is of an awkward shape and was under-utilised. However, the proposed construction of a conservatory to the rear of the house would initiate a process of change which the design of the garden could build on to make this area an asset to the property. There were certain features which may considered to be permanent (e.g. the small hexagonal greenhouse and the oil storage tank) and two mature trees in this area and the design needed to incorporate these. Some of the garden walls were badly in need of repair. The state of the courtyard required some attention at some point in the future but it was agreed with the client that the likely level of expenditure on this was not justified at this point in time although methods of improving this area should be borne in mind during the design process. (This opinion changed in the early stages of the design process).  The small enclosed garden to the north of the house had already been landscaped to a reasonably high standard but there was a need to modify some of the planting in this area.

Client's brief:

The client wished to have a garden which related to the house both in terms of structure and quality of materials used. Some method of both defining the garden as a private space and giving it a sense of unity which relates both to the client’s own house and the whole building complex was called for.

Detail of bog garden

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Last modified:30th January 2011

Copyright Sam McGowan 2011