Bentley Manor

Bound by themes of sensitivity, sustainability and context, the house is set within a series of stepped gardens and terraces where the hedges and walls mark the boundary between architecture and the surrounding woodland. The house is sprawling with no clear beginning or end. The arrangement of open rooms and enclosed gardens blur the distinction between indoor and outdoor spaces.

The natural woodland setting is restructured into a series of ‘playful’ landscaped spaces of varying degrees of formality and privacy. The threshold of each garden is defined by walls, which allow the land to rise and fall in a series of sloping gardens. Some of these walls are thin, while others are thick and carved, creating habitable rooms. Each of the gardens have different characters – a rose garden, courtyard, topiary maze, pools, water gardens and planted roof terraces – all of which are evocative of the traditional English garden.