Design and Build

Saltmarsh
Burnham market, Norfolk

Saltmarsh - Burnham market, Norfolk
Saltmarsh - Burnham market, Norfolk
Saltmarsh - Burnham market, Norfolk
Saltmarsh - Burnham market, Norfolk

at a glance

Completed: 2015
Client: Private
Designer: David West Beale at Frosts
Contractor: Frosts Landscape Construction

award winning

  • 2016 BALI Award Winner for Domestic Garden Construction

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Design and Build

Saltmarsh
Burnham market, Norfolk

Our client asked us to create an appropriate setting for a newly completed Art House build.  

Occupying the centre of a plot of rough ground and hemmed in by tall overgrown hedges, the house needed anchoring into a planned space that would bring clarity and a sense of place.

Hedges were lowered and reshaped and selected trees in poor condition were removed to redefine the boundaries of the garden. Views of borrowed landscape were opened up across open fields rolling down to the distant sea.

The rear garden was designed to feature an entrance corridor of topiary standards and free-form birch with naturalistic under-planting grading into swathes of vibrant texture and colour. 

A resin-bound gravel path edged with aluminium enables a journey through and provides clean flowing lines to contain the planting blocks. 

As the first floor and mezzanine form a large part of the day-to-day living space, it is important for the garden’s design to read both from an elevated perspective and from ground level too. The design addressed this with organic path geometry - revealed when viewed from above, and topiary shapes which bring interest at first- floor eye level. The same elements create a sense of journey and rhythm at ground level.   

The journey continues to the ‘spa room’ tucked away from view behind architectural phormium and cedar trellis screens. Nearby, the garden gym-room sits next to a new view of open countryside, framed by three COR-TEN steel sculptural elements.  

A range of architectural finishes were used on the house exterior. The garden design sought to minimise extending this palette further, opting instead to reflect some of these finishes back into the garden. 

Norfolk flint cobbles, used to clad sections of the house were also used in gabion baskets to form retaining walls to the front and side of the building. Trellis screens from Western red cedar were installed to reflect the wall cladding used elsewhere on the house, while deck boards were selected to match the existing mezzanine and basement level deck areas. 

Further reference is also made in the design to the local coastal environment with installation of oak sleeper groin-style retaining walls to the perimeter banks. Norfolk gravel is used to dress the utility area to the side.

We were also asked by the client to install a porous drive surface system from resin-bound gravel.  The front drive was regraded to eliminate the steep entrance gradient, allowing the driveway to flow seamlessly into the entrance path to the rear garden and removing the problem of cars with low clearance ‘grounding out’.

Taking advantage of the temperate microclimate at the front of the house, an 800 year old olive tree was installed, under-planted with lavender. The olive is planted in a custom built container constructed from steel gabion cages faced with Norfolk cobbles. The planter shape was designed and positioned to reflect the cubist architecture and provide a statement-piece for the entrance to the property.

Saltmarsh won the 2016 BALI Award Winner for Domestic Garden Construction.

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Since 1974 Frosts Landscapes has been dedicated to the dynamic transformation of garden spaces. Based in Buckinghamshire, we work across London and the UK. Let’s have a chat to see how we can assist with your garden design/build project.