Jonathan ford landscape architect

MEADOW FARM, NORTH LEIGH

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Landscape and garden design creating country property approached through parkland

Client: Private

Landscape Architect: Jonathan Ford Garden Designer

Main Contractors: Cotswold Estate and Gardens Ltd

Major Design Elements: Landscape and garden design including drive and parkland planting. Shelterbelt/screen planting. Farm tracks, concrete hard standing and muck heaps. Forecourt including granite sett ramps. Evening garden. Wildflower orchard. Reflecting pool and cut flower garden.

Value of Capital Works: Not available.

Until the current owners bought it the property consisted of two dwellings serving a livery with associated outbuildings, barns and ménage all in need of renovation. The buildings are set in around 15 acres of paddocks used for grazing for the horses. The houses have been transformed into a single house with views reminiscent of the Devon countryside where the owner has spent many happy family holidays. It is just north of Witney.

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The needs of people...

Previously Meadow Farm was approached from a dangerous corner on the road along a drive passed utilitarian barns and the back of the stables. A new drive formed part of the requirement of planning permission for works to the house. The client wished the design to bring the landscape and garden to the same standard as the house.

the laws of nature and of building...

The Forecourt was lowered to ground floor level avoiding the need for steps down into the house. Hedges were planted at full height to provide immediate screening of the ugly garage block. Jonathan introduced the client to a gardener. Detailed specifications and competitive tendering of the Works resulted in a 30% saving in costs.

the desire for beauty.

The newly designed drive sweeps across the paddocks with beautiful long distant views down the valley and across to a hillside opposite, approaching the house on a line that optimizes the setting of the house in the landscape. The utilitarian ménage, garages, stable and barns have all been screened by parkland trees, woodland blocks and native hedges. The parkland trees - mainly oak - though small now will form beautiful elements in the landscape for hundreds of years. The garden has been extensively refurbished including wildflower meadows and areas to sit out at different times of day. There are raised beds for cut flowers for the house.