One of the most distinctive features of the Country House legacy is that of the walled garden: a very specific architectural construction and yet, not a building. To describe it as a brick wall surrounding and indeed creating a garden, is to miss the enormous historical importance of this very particular construction. The history and development of propagation and seed germination, the cultivation of exotic plant types , the growing of tender fruit, unusual vegetables and increasingly varied plants and flowers, is very much an intrinsic part of the history and development of the walled garden itself.
Although the ‘fruits’ of the garden were specifically to be enjoyed by the wealthy estate owners, the development of scientific techniques and the labour-intensive management of these gardens represent a pinnacle of achievement in horticulture in the late 19th century.
This project for a Paragraph 79 house is informed by the tradition of the larger greenhouses often found amongst the buildings required to sustain the walled garden’s processes and production methods. Just as these greenhouses once did, this house responds to the microclimate of the walled garden by employing solar gain, both through the sun’s infiltration into the building and the use of the sun’s energy through a ground source heating system.
The construction is extremely sustainable with hemp walls on a reclaimed timber frame and hemp batt for the roof. Recycled glass is used as a slab insulation with a lime-based floor construction, meaning that the building treads very lightly in terms of its carbon footprint.
The garden itself is naturally also reconstructed and renewed as part of the overall scheme, together making an environmental and historical contribution to this heritage asset.
The Walled Garden
Broadland District Council
Planning Approved unanimously
‘CPRE Norfolk supports this application…. The design is of such innovative and high quality that we hope it will be entered for a CPRE Norfolk award in the future.’ (M. Rayner, CPRE Norfolk)
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