The Rise of Garden Villages: Its effect on Housing and Outdoor Trends

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February 16, 2018

The UK gardening industry is getting ready for a huge rise in new consumers, due to the government’s recent sign-off for the creation of 17 new garden villages and towns. With more than £7 million in funding and locations across the country chosen as bases for these large building projects, how will these new garden villages — which are new communities built on brownfield land — affect gardening trends and UK society?  

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The government’s stance on garden villages

Perhaps seeing the garden village as a solution to the country’s housing issues, those in power are firmly behind the construction of multiple garden villages. The government plans to give £6 million towards funding 14 new garden villages and a further £1.4 million to support three new garden towns (similar to garden villages, only larger).

If you think that these villages are likely to be restricted to a certain area of the UK, you’d be mistaken. Fortunately, future garden villages will pop up all over the country. Expect to see them in: Lancaster, Cornwall, Lincolnshire, Stratford-on-Avon, Essex, Cumbria, Hampshire, Merseyside, Oxfordshire, Derbyshire, Cheshire East, East Northants, Devon, and Runnymede and Surrey Heath. Plans are also in place to build garden towns in Aylesbury, Taunton, and Harlow and Gilston, which are anticipated to provide an extra 200,000 homes.

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How to define a garden village

Even for experts in the field, describing exactly what a garden village (or town) is can be difficult. In essence, a garden village is made up of between 1,500 and 10,000 houses that are all part of a single, self-contained community. As they must be a settlement outside of a town or city, they’re typically surrounded by a lot of green land.

It’s encouraged that garden villages create their own ‘identity’ as a community, which is why every garden village is constructed with a collection of its own facilities to lessen its dependence on neighbouring towns or cities. Usually, garden villages have their own schools, shops and transport stations; which makes this type of living space perfect for families and first-time buyers looking to lead the picture-perfect life.

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How will garden villages affect what we buy for our gardens?

This boost in new private and communal outdoor spaces means a rise in the consumer market for garden furniture and other products. So, what does this mean for future garden trends? Here are a few to watch out for:

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Get ready to see even more variety when it comes to lighting up your garden for relaxing warm evenings outdoors. From hanging Chinese lanterns between deck posts to filling jam jars with twinkling LED fairy lights, illuminating your garden in a creative way is set to be a big spring and summer trend.

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As for garden tables and chairs, tomorrow’s trends will likely focus on utilising retro designs. We’ll see more natural, traditional materials — such as teak and rattan — to create a more rustic look, as well as a rise in woven and crochet techniques for the retro effect.

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With more people having the benefit of their own gardens, it’s probable that we’ll see a boost in products that maximise our time outside. Summerhouses are great for making the most of garden space and creating an extra room for families without having to pay for an expensive house extension — ideal for first-time buyers in new garden villages. Typically, these are small and easy to fit into your garden with enough room for a few chairs and a table to unwind with drinks and food, so these are likely to be a big hit for garden village homeowners.

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For those who want to spend plenty of time in the garden, but don’t want to build a sun house, there’s the opportunity to install quality decking for family get-togethers and barbecues. The construction of more garden villages means more people looking to make the outside like home, so get ready to see a rise in decked areas and decking furniture.

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This luxury item has been growing in popularity for years, so new garden village homeowners are only likely to add to the demand. These are great additions to any outdoor space, especially if you have a rural view of the surrounding countryside.

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Just because more people are going to have access to a private garden, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they will be keen to take up gardening. Since some people find gardening a chore, so it’s expected that there’ll be an increase in demand of artificial grass to make outdoor maintenance easier. If you’ve decked much of your back garden, you can add colour by creating a small space of artificial grass on the ground level, or putting a full artificial lawn at the front of your home that you don’t have to keep weeding and watering.  

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Garden villages and established communities

The construction of any new building, facility or town is always going to have an effect on surrounding environments. But how will the rise in garden villages impact on nearby communities? Since these building projects will supply Britain with more than 50,000 homes, we should witness a rise in manual work and job opportunities in these regions, which will help to drive money to several parts of the UK.

But will this rise in population in certain areas of the UK put a strain on existing services, such as surgeries and schools? Hopefully not. Garden villages are built with their own facilities, including schools and general practices, so they should instead cause the creation of more jobs and facilities in a district rather than put a strain on current services.

Despite the rise in traffic and increase of commuters on local buses and trains, the impact of a garden village on neighbouring communities appears mainly positive.

This article was researched and created by Arbordeck, a leading retailer of composite decking boards.

Andrew Mills
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Andrew Mills

After completing a degree in English Literature from Northumbria University, Andrew worked as an English Tutor for two and a half years, then completed a Masters degree in Modern & Contemporary Literature from Newcastle University. Andrew now works as a copywriter at Mediaworks and tutors in English when he can.
Andrew Mills
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