Enjoy your garden all year-round with a bespoke cabin or summerhouse from Dunbar Garden Centre. Upgrade your potting shed, create a summerhouse in which to socialise, or have a cabin designed with guests in mind. We’ve asked our designer and expert, Cal Gowdy, to answer his most frequently asked questions when being tasked with designing a new cabin, summerhouse or shed.
Our bespoke outdoor buildings won’t need any planning permission as long you can tick off a few important things:
- You’re not building on the land of a listed building or within a conservation area
- It’s not going in your front garden
- It won’t take up more than 50% of your undeveloped garden
Heights for outdoor buildings can reach 4m, with anything over 2.5m requiring a 2m gap between the structure and the edge of your garden or fence.
Our natural finish cabins and summerhouses at Dunbar Garden Centre are made from kiln-dried Scandinavian or Baltic redwood which will reduce shrinkage. Bear in mind that there will be contraction and expansion with climatic conditions, so ensure you invest in a good paint or oil to keep it protected for longer. All our cabins have double-glazed windows, with the summerhouses being single glazed as standard. We don’t recommend using felt covering for your roof and instead pair our buildings with bitumen roof shingles or eco slates – 100% recycled and with the option of a few colours.
Your summerhouse or cabin comes with optional floor and roof insulation so you may want to think of having a power source for an electric heater in the cooler seasons. Whilst wall insulation and log burners are feasible, just be aware that they can double your original cost and there are extra regulations to meet. Your height restrictions will also have to take into account any flue that reaches above the roof.
A guttering kit is essential for looking after the external wooden walls of your outdoor building, so put it to good use by collecting rainwater for your garden with an added water butt. In Summer the average household’s water use in the garden can spike to almost 70% of all water supplied, up from only 3% during the rest of the year. Not only will you be taking some strain off the environment, but you’ll be insuring yourself against hosepipe and sprinkler bans.