The plot surrounding the couple’s pink Edwardian house has always been a joint project. Peter did a course on landscaping and realised that what they really needed was more room for plants. 20 years after first designing the original garden, they undertook a radical Caribbean makeover.
Inspired by regular visits to Abbotsbury Subtropical Gardens in Dorset, the couple decided they wanted a Caribbean style garden. They created a paved seating area surrounded by lush foliage including tree ferns, Fatsia japonica and spiky phormiums and also built an outdoor lounge space, taking inspiration from pictures of the Caribbean using corrugated tin for the roof and painted panels for the walls.
Peter Richmond and wife Julie, who run a hairdressing salon, live here with their youngest son Harry, 21, and miniature schnauzer, Marmite
A former farm cottage built in 1904 in Chelmsford, Essex
Words – Constance Craig Smith