Community and Schools Development - BALI National Landscape Awards 2017


Sponsor: Brett Landscapes

Merchant Square, Floating Pocket Park

Client European Land and Property Designer Garden Club London
Suppliers Europlanters, London Stone, Millboard, MKM Creations, Namgrass

This development involved careful consideration of the existing site and collaboration with a marine engineer to meet the brief. The footprint is proportionate to the body of water and ensures freedom of movement for ducks and swans.

The scheme provides increased biodiversity, aesthetic interest and high-quality public amenity space. The floating pocket park is cohesive with its surroundings and great attention has been paid to the way in which people will relate to the space.

Raised planters, hardwood benches, composite decking, an artificial lawn, lighting and hardy low-maintenance planting ensure that the park delights and entertains visitors by encouraging interaction with the water and give a range of colours and scents throughout the year. There is a combination of secluded planted areas for quiet reflection and relaxation along with larger hard and soft surfaced open spaces for events and larger crowds.

See Design & Build award

Judges' comments

"This ‘garden’ of interlocking pontoons has created an entirely original communal space that is having the desired effect of bringing residents from the local community, as well as office/retail workers and tourists, into Merchant Square for relaxation, public events and private hire. The contractor worked closely with marine engineers on the design to achieve the correct buoyancy for the structure and then created a beautiful outdoor space. The quality of the workmanship is excellent and the artificial grass, containers with herbaceous planting and semi-mature trees, decking, seating, lighting and a covered pergola area have all been expertly installed by the contractor."


Northumbrian Landscaping

Project A Homecoming Prayer
Client 6 Royal Logistics Corps
Designer Northumbrian Landscaping
Suppliers Green-tech, Johnsons Wellfield, Lindum Turf, Percy Hudsons, Wilkinson Plant Centre

This garden forms part of a larger memorial project to commemorate the homecoming of 6RLC from Germany to their new home at Dishforth Airfield. Built in a Japanese style, it is intended to be a reflective space providing an oasis of peace amidst the hustle and bustle of a busy army barracks. The circular design and hedging create isolation from the garden’s surroundings, while a central cedar-clad prayer house and seating area offer the perfect place for thought and meditation.

Elmtree Garden Contractors

Project Happy Dayz Pre-School
Client Happy Dayz Pre-School
Designer Elmtree Garden Contractors
Suppliers Boningale, Namgrass UK, Staddons Timber

Happy Dayz applied for funding from Bristol City Council to turn an area of sloped derelict land at the back of the site into a usable area for the children. Elmtree came up with ideas that incorporated terracing the area and including different smaller areas featuring sand play, artificial grass, fruit trees, decking and a raised planter. Sloping areas were filled with varying planting including scented shrubs to give year-round interest. A timber cabin was constructed as additional classroom space, especially during summer months. Although the works were completed during school holidays, there was only a narrow access to the left of the school entrance, so a lot of hand work and labour was required.

Scandor Landscape Contractors

Project Porchester Community School
Client Hampshire County Council
Architect Property, Business & Regulatory Services, Hampshire County Council
Designer/Maintenance Contractor Scandor Landscape Contractors
Suppliers Aggregate Industries UK, Kinley Systems, Namgrass, The Resin Mill, Trade Partners International

Working to Hampshire Council’s design, Scandor regenerated this school courtyard over the summer holiday. The area was tired and uneven — a particular problem as the school is designated as accessible for wheelchair users. New surface water drains and a soakaway were constructed. Scandor installed new porous bitmac, resin bound surfacing and artificial grass areas that were gently mounded for wheelchair users, providing an element of fun. 

Baylis Landscapes

Project Dulwich Prep School, Early-Years Playground Development
Client Dulwich Prep School
Designer Baylis Landscape Contractors
Suppliers AE Evans, Alexandra Security, Artificial Lawn Company, RTC Safety Surfaces, Tate Fencing

Baylis Landscapes undertook a complete transformation of this aging early-years playground. The result is a multi-use space full of opportunities for learning through play. Themed zones were created for sport, role play, forest school, mud kitchen and music. An existing play ship was given a new lease of life by opening up the area and constructing an adventure island with shore line, underground mine, native camp and log scramble. Other features include a talk tube, natural boulders for climbing, water pump and interactive stream.


Project Monmouth Road Green, Open Space
Client London Borough of Enfield
Architect Hanna Solomansson
Designer/Maintenance Contractor Glendale Grounds Management
Suppliers AH Nicholls

This project was commissioned with the aim of breathing new life into a neglected urban space in Edmonton. An innovative approach to the landscape project, which exceeded the client’s expectations for its execution, was to involve the local community in the redevelopment of the green space. Ten children from a gardening club at nearby St Edmund’s School were invited to help plant up two shrub beds. Glendale’s staff showed the children the best planting techniques for each species and explained the features of each plant.

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