I'm going to ask you to bear with me for this week's column because on first inspection you may be concerned that I've lost the plot, but I can assure you there is method to my perceived madness! So here goes; garden sheds. Once deemed an afterthought storage space for all those things that would look unsightly in your home there is a considerable movement that suggests these previously humble, inauspicious wooden constructions are becoming more pertinent.
Times have changed and so it seems has the traditional garden shed. A recent piece by Patrick Barkham of The Guardian intimated that these former creosote scented hideaways for your lawnmowers, shovels, and rusty old nails could be a catalyst to transforming our housing industry.
Thanks to innovators up and down the country the garden shed is being turned into something more utilitarian. Many of them may still look the same, but delve a little deeper and these formerly modest abodes for your bucket and spade are evolving into innovative fortresses or low-consumption extensions of your home. A place where you can either escape your busy lives or create something more practical. I'm not quite old enough to be investing in a model railway but the ever-evolving concept of the shed is something I'm increasingly intrigued by.
Shed Of The Year
This is by no means an epiphany which came to me overnight and was certainly influenced by the engagingly watchable Shed Of The Year on Channel 4, in addition to the aforementioned Guardian piece. As presenter George Clark guides me from shed to stunning shed I'm captivated by their inventive nature and the endless possibilities these adaptable spaces can provide to ones home. Many of them look like something from Tolkien's Middle Earth, others feel more homely, while some are robust havens for your kids to enjoy, like a latter-day evolution of the tree house. But each space is undoubtedly an extension of the home owner and offers you the chance to add plenty of value to your property. A blank canvas space that increasingly merits plenty of thought.
As the need for space increases in our lives these malleable constructions may just provide a very worthy solution. There are so many factors to consider when selling or buying a home that I'm keen not to muddy the waters, but this recent boom in garden sheds suggests we all need to start being open minded about whether or not we are missing a trick or two in order to realise the full-potential of a property.
We all dream of making a little part of the world our own and I now realise that a shed could well be an additional arm to that dream. The point is this; sheds are being reinvented, people are constantly innovating and in doing so inspiring others to push their ideas further. These once quirky British eccentricities may be something far more pertinent that we once thought. I really believe we should embrace them.