The ultimate guide to garden rooms and why they are so popular

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As the popularity of working from home continues, so does the need for a separate working environment away from the hustle and bustle of the main house. Garden rooms have been filling this niche for some time, but now these truly habitable spaces are becoming a popular choice for home owners who want to extend their living space for a multitude of uses including hobby rooms, home studios or even relaxing areas to unwind in their spare time.

Why are garden rooms so popular and what are the benefits of owning one? Here garden room specialists Oeco Garden Rooms talk us through some of the advantages of choosing a garden room instead of the traditional house extension or loft conversion when adding space to your property.

5 reasons to use wood when planning a new home


Planning a refurbishment to your home or a new build? Consider wood as one of the key materials in your plans. Wood features can bring out the cosiness of a country cottage or be used as contrast to modern fittings to great effect in contemporary design. Here are some good reasons to check out the options with wood for that perfect finish. Article in association with

Installers – play your part in Chimney Fire Safety Week 2016


As part of Chimney Fire Safety Week 2016, which takes place from 5th to 11th September, Schiedel Chimney Systems is reminding installers of the important role they have to play in keeping their customers safe from chimney fires, a problem that still causes 382 deaths a year on average, despite reducing by 30% in the last decade.

From competent installation and tailored advice from the installer, through to ongoing maintenance, an integrated approach to chimney safety will help stop preventable accidents.

Interest rate cut leads to 55% rise in mortgage enquiries


Week on week mortgage enquiries have increased by an average of 55 per cent since the Bank of England cut interest rates from 0.5 per cent to an historic low of 0.25 per cent earlier this month, deVere Mortgages reveals.

Mike Coady, Managing Director of deVere Mortgages, part of deVere Group, which specialises in UK mortgages for expats and overseas buyers, attributes the uptick in enquiries directly to the BoE’s rate cut on 4 August that was aimed at cushioning the UK from a post-Brexit vote recession.

Global Shop Solutions Celebrates 10-Year Milestone with Director of Consulting


THE WOODLANDS, TX, AUGUST 2016 – Global Shop Solutions, a developer of enterprise resource planning (ERP) software simplifying manufacturing for 40 years, celebrates a decade of consulting excellence under the leadership of Nick Knight, Director of Consulting.

Under Mr. Knight’s leadership, Global Shop Solutions has seen a historic increase in the size and scale of ERP manufacturing software and implementations. During his tenure, the Consulting team has tripled in size, increased years of experience on the team, and expanded to China, Asia-Pacific, Mexico, Australia and Canada.

Bringing a 17th century farmhouse to modern standards of energy efficiency and comfort – Houlston Manor, Shropshire

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Houlston Manor is an unlisted mainly 17th century box framed farmhouse, which has been substantially added to and altered since it was first built. Originally a single storey building, the building has expanded over the years to include a second storey, double depth bays and a substantial chimney stack. The house was also ‘gentrified’ according to the fashion of the early 19th century when the timber-framed front wall was replaced with brick to create a unified exterior.

Owned by the same family for generations, the current owner was born in the house in the mid 1950s and has lived there ever since. His long family connection with Houlston reaches back to his paternal grandmother, whose uncle was a tenant of the Manor in the mid 19th century – they even have a very early photograph of him sitting in front of the house!

DHF warning follows Harrison Ford accident court case


The company responsible for a hydraulic door that badly injured actor Harrison Ford has pleaded guilty to criminal charges in a prosecution brought by the Health & Safety Executive. Sentencing was due on Monday, August 22 but has been adjourned until October.

The accident happened at the Pinewood studio during the production of the latest Star Wars film. Harrison Ford was hit by the rapidly closing metal-framed door and pinned to the ground. An HSE representative compared the power of the door’s drive system “to the weight of a small car. This was a foreseeable incident,” the court was told.

Kenshō Boutique Hotel & Suites: Where Architecture & Interior Design Truly Shine


Overlooking the sapphire waters of Ornos Bay in Mykonos, Greece, the newly opened Kenshō Boutique Hotel & Suites is surely a sight to behold. Designed by Greek architect Alexandros Kolovos, the property blends the natural beauty of Cycladic architecture with a signature take on functional spaces.

Upon arrival, guests are quickly immersed into an environment reminiscent of the labyrinth paths found in Mykonos Town: Handcrafted walls and passages of wrought iron plate and stone slabs meet at the core of the complex, where benches of carved marble showcase fine Greek products, vintage wines and exquisite delicatessen. From there, each nook and cranny has its own story to tell, and whether you’re a furniture maker, craftsman, art enthusiast or someone who simply appreciates the finer things in life, you will no doubt find that the hotel’s architecture and interior design is where it truly shines.



The UK’s biggest independent distributor of quality timber and panel products, James Latham, has supplied 110m2 of E47 Amboise French Oak wood flooring from their Bausen range to complete a barn conversion in Ulnes Walton, Lancashire.

The Amboise French Oak wood flooring was specially cut and engineered to fit around the original brick walls of Calverts Barn, and was fitted by Inspired Solutions in Standish.

Cool Off This Summer With 8 Serene Outdoor Showers


The outdoor shower is the architect’s answer to the waterfall. Merely because of its proximity to nature, the outdoor shower becomes an elevated space. Outdoor showers engage with a site and landscape in a way unique to many functional spaces. At the same time, architects needs to consider privacy and sight-lines for each shower, as well as how light and materials will affect the space.

Architecture on the Market: 7 Idyllic Modern Farmhouses


Before our period of industrialization and mass urbanization, small-scale farms were vital to the development and sustainment of communities across the globe. The typology that dots lush countrysides has, particularly in the west, become synonymous with the signature A-frame shape, a symbol of agrarian architecture which still endures despite the ever-evolving format for farming.

NEW ‘Vivaldi’ textured carpet collection


Natural Elements Flooring’s new ‘Vivaldi’ carpet has a multi-level loop pile, which gives it a beautifully distinctive aesthetic.  Not only does this help it to look good, but it also ensures optimum wear.  This is a wool mix carpet that won’t show up footprints and doesn’t mind heavy furniture sitting on it.  The loop pile also gives it increased insulation – which is excellent for maintaining ambient room temperature.  In short it’s the ideal flooring solution for rooms and areas with high volume footfall, including hallways and stairs.  Its textured appearance and neutral hues means that ‘Vivaldi’ will work with any interiors scheme – both contemporary and traditional.

Breaking News: The future is here. Vista System launches VISTA SHARP – the frameless, flat and sleek signage system


Written By: Pnina Kedar Feldman – International Sales and Business Development Manager at Vista System

For the past 21 years, Vista System, a world leader in way-finding signage, continuously fulfills its pledge to the market, by relentlessly developing and launching new, exciting and innovative signage solutions.

August Interior Style Trends


Luxury bathroom company Hugo Oliver can reveal the key interior trends that have increased in the past couple of weeks. Based on Google trends data*, Hugo Oliver’s interior designer, Nancy Straughan, provides advice and tips on how to achieve the most sought after trends in your bathroom.

Restaurant Design


It is only six weeks until the first ever Restaurant Design show takes place at ExCeL London on the 27th and 28th September. This free to attend event has a whole host of exciting features that are guaranteed to inspire you.

You will have the opportunity to experience 50 different educational seminars, over 120 inspirational suppliers, as well as the newest trends, ideas, and advice. The speakers attending the show feature an all-star cast of award winning interior designers, architects, and hospitality professionals.

Infrastructure construction halted in July with a 20 per cent decrease in contract value


With the first full month of post-Brexit figures in the books it was the infrastructure sector that experienced a decline, with the value of contracts for July decreasing to £1.5 billion, a drop of 20 per cent compared to June based on a three month rolling average.

According to the August edition of the Economic & Construction Market Review from industry analysts Barbour ABI, construction new orders were down to £5.8 billion in July, a month on month drop of £400 million. Along with infrastructure, the other prominent sector in construction was residential, which saw a decrease of seven per cent in contract value and a drop of 2,000 units compared to the previous month.