Bespoke Log Cabins – A Journey

There is often an incorrect assumption that a bespoke log cabin is a costly and difficult process. Up to half of the cabins we supply and install are bespoke. These range from typical garden log cabins to large school builds. We understand that everyone has a specific need when it comes to their log cabin, whether that be the purpose of the cabin, or that perfect place it is intended to sit. We love helping customers get the log cabin of their dream and this article will outline how simple the process is.

Starts with a sketch

Firstly, we require a very simple sketch to work from. All the sketch needs to do is show the overall dimensions, any additional rooms, window and door placement. From this we can produce some preliminary CAD drawings for you to see and make any amendments if required.

Below are some samples of a variety of log cabins and timber buildings we have drawn for customers:

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We are happy to make alterations to the design, for example if you require larger windows, we can place them in the drawing. If you wanted an overhang, we can add that too! At this stage in the process, the main aim is to get the design correct in terms of size and position of the windows and doors. We would also arrange a site visit to your property at this point, to get an overall understanding on where the building will be positioned. This is important in terms of exposure, drainage and base requirements. Different buildings in different locations can potentially bring difficulties further down the line. Some of our competitors neglect this stage of the process. However as we are passionate about making the right building for you, we insist on seeing the site before continuing on to the next step.

Finalising the design

Once we have completed the site and finalised the aesthetic design, we move onto the practical design. This is where we can work out the exact specification, the materials required, and the all important price! From this we can create more detailed technical drawings which we can manufacture to. Below is an example of a building we installed very recently in Seaford, East Sussex. A fantastic design, incorporating two summerhouses, a storage shed and a canopy on the left hand .

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At this stage if you are happy with the design, you can place an order. Typically our schedule is very busy, and the lead time is 6-8 weeks, which is important to bear in mind. If you have an important upcoming event, it’s far better to order sooner rather than later!

Construction

Once the building has arrived, we will call to book a date for delivery. We can provide the building as supply only, but we recommend one of our experienced team of installers complete this part of the project. As timber is prone to expansion and contraction, our installers understand the best methods to overcome such issues. Seaford Cabin 2

Seaford Cabin

The above two images show the completed build in Seaford. A fantastic design by our customer, which is made to measure and adds a great feature to their garden.

Aftercare

We cannot stress enough how important is it to apply one coat of the free can of wood preserver – followed by at least two coats of a proprietary wood stain (we recommend Protek). A full detailed guide on why this is necessary can be found in the our Log Cabin Maintenance and Care Guide.

If you have problems with the building, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We like to ensure that our customers are 100% happy with their purchase.

Special Offer – £100 off Log Cabin orders!

Following on from the success of our launch over the Easter Weekend: NFF are offering £100 off Log Cabin orders placed at our Merriments Display Centre until the 30th April. Make sure to quote MERRIMENTS2015 to qualify for this amazing discount.

 

This special offer applies to our entire range of premium Log Cabins.  All our Log Cabins come complete with full double glazing and are built using strong 44mm thick logs. This ensures that they are highly insulated and are designed to last for many years.

Oak Log Cabin

If you visit our Merriments Display Centre you can see a selection of our Log Cabins. Oak  features large 1.5m high windows providing ample light. This is an excellent choice for a west-facing garden, to make the most out of those long summer sunsets. One of our customers uses their Oak as a personal art studio. Another appealing feature of Oak is it’s under 2.5m high, which typically more planning friendly – as always check with your local area authority before ordering!

Elm Log Cabin

 

For those looking for something larger, Elm features 3 separate rooms. Although most use the two rooms to the rear as bedrooms, they can be used for much more.  For instance, one room could be used to store books in, while the other could be a mini gym. The large room could be used as a seating area, while another used purely for storage. The possibilities are endless!

Cherry Log Cabin

Perhaps space is an issue? Cherry is the smallest of our Log Cabins, however it still features all the benefits of our larger models. This can make an excellent guest room at an incredibly low price. Using this months special offer, the price is just £1,200!

 

Getting to Merriments is easy; from Hastings or Tunbridge Wells its just off the A21 at Hurst Green. For those coming from Maidstone, its on the A229. For the rest off us here’s the address!

Merriments Merriments Gardens
Hawkhurst Road
Hurst Green
East Sussex
TN19 7RA
www.merriments.co.uk

A glowing review from a customer

We recently installed a bespoke log cabin for a customer in Lewes, for use as a summerhouse. They sent us a lovely letter…

“We are writing to say thank you so much for our new summerhouse. The product speaks for itself. We are really pleased with the finished result. We would like to thank you as a company for your professionalism. Nothing was too much trouble. There was always a can do approach.

We would especially like to thank Chris and Rick for their hard-work as they managed to get the roof on and make the product water tight just in time before the rain came. They both worked extremely hard to finish the job and took great pride in what they have achieved. They will both go a long way and we understand this job was quite a challenge because of its uniqueness.

We would also like to thank you for liaising with the contractor and for achieving a great result on our behalf as customers. We would happily recommend you as a company to others considering purchasing a new summerhouse.

Once again it is nice to meet a company that takes its customers concerns and ideas on board and goes the extra mile to provide the customer with a product that they are entirely happy with.

Yours sincerely

Mr & Mrs P.

We love receiving such great feedback! So if you have had a wonderful experience with us, please leave us a review on Facebook or on Google+.

Our new Gazebo!

NFF’s new Gazebo

If you go down to our Merriments Display Centre you will find the latest addition to our already huge range of garden buildings. Our Gazebo offers the best of both worlds – two solid walls acting as a wind break and providing a nice shady spot. The two frame sections allow a nice summer breeze to flow and a place to sit in the sun. It all depends on the choice of position in your garden: a north facing spot will provide a cool shady sanctuary – while a west facing spot will give you a place to enjoy splendid sunsets.

 

Measuring 3.5m x 3.5m, this gives you a huge space for garden furniture. There is plenty of room for a table and chairs, enough to seat a large barbecue party. If you would rather just have a quiet place for a sun bed, there’s room for two and a table.

 

The Gazebo is built using the same 44mm thick logs found on our Log Cabins offering the same high level of durability and longevity.  As with our Log Cabins, the Gazebo comes with free roofing felt and free wood preserver, included in the price.

 

Prices

£1750 – 3.5m x 3.5m Gazebo

Optional

£650 – Install

£370 – Shingle Roofing Felt

£600 – Timber Base

 

Don’t forget to have a look at our other gazebo – The Wentworth. This octagonal gazebo can be built using fully boarded sections to act as a windbreak. The placement of these sides are fully customisable, allowing you to order the perfect building for your garden. The Wentworth is a smaller building, in either 8′ x 8′ (2.4m x 2.4m) or 10′ x 10′ (3m x 3m).

Wentworth Summerhouse

As with all of our buildings, it is always best to get in contact us or call (01435 813 535), if you have any questions. Our experienced team will be able to advise you on the best possibilities for your garden.

Poplar Log Cabin

Top Ten uses for a Log Cabin

Our Log Cabins make fantastic guest rooms but there are a huge range of possibilities that a Log Cabin can offer. Below are ten of our favourite uses for a Log Cabin!

1. Animal House

A Log Cabin can make an ideal place for pets, providing an indoor space without having to be in the house, making a mess. A cat-flap can be installed making it a great place to pop a bowl of milk and some cat food for your fluffy felines, or a place for your dog to play with its toys. For smaller animals, a Log Cabin gives plenty of space for hutches and cages while providing the warmth that rabbits and guinea pigs need. Some have even built an aviary inside a Cherry!

2. Library

You might be thinking this can be achieved with a trip to Ikea and purchasing a few Billy bookcases, which is true.. but why not fit it with something a bit more classy. Then install a nice comfy old leather reading chair and an ornate end table – giving you the ultimate cosy sanctuary to ‘read’ in with a nice big glass of wine!

3. Private Bar

In some of our larger models it can indeed be feasible to install a bar area, complete with stools, a music system and of course an area to mix your favourite drinks! There is plenty of space in a 5m x 5m Birch for a table or two, allowing you to create that ‘down the pub’ night in your garden!

4. Games Room

Ever wanted to set up your own poker night with the lads (or lasses) but a late night in the kitchen is less than ideal? Or a place to practice some darts into the evening? A log cabin can provide the space you need to have a few mates over to play as late as you like, without waking up kids/wife/hubby!

5. Teenager Hangout

Of course you would never stop your child/grandchild from spending time with their friends, however: teenage boys can be smelly – teenage girls can be noisy. Why not give them a small ‘home’ of their own? A log cabin is a great solution as it allows teenagers to have the freedom and privacy they crave… but it allows you, the parent, to keep an eye on them and make sure they stay out of trouble!

6. Artists Studio

With plenty of light and space, a Log Cabin is ideal for setting up an easel and pursuing your artistic passion for painting. Perhaps you’ve been putting it off for years but now you have the time and space to finally pursue that long lost hobby!

7. Barbecue Buffet

Barbecues are great, however a common problem is with the huge amount of dishes: green/rice/potato/pasta salads, bread, sauces, and that’s even before the myriad of meats has started sizzling! A log cabin can provide a buffet space for guests to serve themselves, and act as a makeshift kitchen to cut up rolls, toss salads and marinade meat.

8. Music Room

A log cabin can be sound-proofed to provide a place to practice a new instrument in peace or jam with a few friends. You could even go all out, filling it with the latest recording gear and turning it into the ultimate home studio!

9. The Study

If you have a child in school or college, you will probably know that it can be difficult to get them to focus and get on with their homework. With so many distractions in the house, such as phones, iPads, computers or games, it’s no wonder they get distracted. A log cabin can be a great place for a quiet area in which to study, not just for kids but adults too! Why not learn a new language or a new skill to help your career go in a more exciting direction!

10. Workshop

Our Log Cabins provide a nice retreat within the garden to work on a project or repair bikes, electronics, broken pottery etc… Being out of the house means being away from typical distractions such as the phone or emails. Plus you can let the kids know that it is your space, and your space alone!

Our log cabin range offers one crucial benefit compared to a standard shed or workshop: 44mm walls. This means that the building benefits from greater strength and rigidity when compared to perhaps a standard timber workshop.We supply various different designs, which can provide plenty of daylight to help with those fiddly little jobs!

New Timber Buildings Coming Soon

Timeless Pod

We are really excited by our new range of Timber Buildings from Timeless Timber, with some very exciting models on their way to us. Pictured above is the Pod shed, based on the fashionable ‘glamping’ pods featuring the trademark, distinctive domed roof. The Pod continues the interesting aesthetic theme with a unique design on the door providing light through its three glass panels and via a small fixed Perspex window on the rear of the building. The building will be available in the following sizes:

  • 1.8 x 2.4m (6′ x 8′) 2.5m high
  • 1.8 x 3.0m (6′ x 10′) 2.5m high
  • 1.8 x 3.6m (6′ x 12′) 2.5m high
  • 2.45 x 3.0m (8′ x 10′) 2.7m high
  • 2.45 x 3.6m (8′ x 12′) 2.7m high
  • 3.0 x 3.6m (10′ x 12′) 2.7m high

 

Timeless Georgian Shed 3-4viewrsz

The Georgian in contrast to the Pod is a much more traditional garden building. Pictured here in a subtle light green, the design was inspired by the symmetry and straight lines of the Georgian period and this is carried through with brass ironmongery and the side window. The building is available in three sizes:

  • 1.8 x 2.4m (6′ x 8′) 2.7m high
  • 2.4 x 2.4m (8′ x 8′) 3.1m high
  • 3 x 2.4m (10′ x 8′) 3.35m high

 

Gothic Shed

Perhaps the Gothic shed will definitely add character to your garden. With its distinctive arched doors and windows, this shed captures the style of the period. The style is continued with black Gothic ironmongery and finished with a light brown stain as standard. There are an additional range of colours, to make this building suit the aesthetic needs of your garden.

Available in the following sizes:

  • 1.8 x 2.4m (6′ x 8′) 2.7m high
  • 2.4 x 2.4m (8′ x 8′) 3.1m high
  • 3 x 2.4m (10′ x 8′) 3.35m high

Watch this space for more updates!

Events Season!

We are attending a whole raft of events this season. So far we have been to a few local business events (yawn) such as the Crowborough Business Expo, the Lewes District Enterprise Expo and the recent Let’s Do Business Brighton. More interestingly we have been to the Ardingly Spring Show and the Plumpton College Open Day with our three display buildings. We had lots of visitors check out our latest range of timber buildings including a pint sized Cherry and an Acorn Wendy-House.

Holly Log Cabin

Looking ahead: we have the Heathfield Show coming up this weekend (23rd May) which includes tractor displays and quad bikes performing outrageous stunts! A great day out for the family and make sure to pop by and see us with our range of cabins and as usual we will be giving away treats to all our visitors.

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For the more mature reader, we will be attending the Eastbourne Over 50s Lifestyle Show (30th and 31st May). I am told that the event will be welcoming to over 40s and over 30s too! For this event we will be constructing and taking down one of our Log Cabins inside the historic Winter Gardens. Make sure to visit and see one of our exclusive 44mm log cabins which provide superior strength and longevity.

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We will be attending the South of England show at Ardingly (11th til the 13th of June) for the very first time this year, and we are very excited about it. Come and visit us while enjoying the displays of showjumping, award-winning farm animals and a range of other fun activities!

Heathfield works

We are proud to help Heathfield Works!

tomorrowspeople

Tomorrow’s People is a national employment charity that works with those facing the greatest barriers to employment and helps them to get and keep a job. The charity’s vision is to break the cycle of unemployment and dependency in deprived communities throughout the UK by aiding both young people and adults to build up their confidence and their CVs. Tomorrow’s People has been changing lives for 30 years and has helped over 470,000 people on their journey into work since it was set up in 1984.

 

The causes for long-term unemployment are often complicated and multi-faceted, ranging from turbulent family life or mental health issues to social barriers or physical disability. Tomorrow’s People views each of its clients as an individual and works with them to develop a bespoke route into sustainable employment.

 

The Works! is a ten-week programme that helps unemployed young people in isolated rural areas find new opportunities and work. Newton & Frost Fencing works closely with Heathfield Works!, providing work experience for young people on the programme. In a week they get to understand the fundamentals of being in the work place, such as team work, adherence to Health and Safety rules and how to conduct themselves in the workplace.

 

We are proud that several of our current full time staff have come through the Heathfield Works! programme. We provide them with the necessary skills and experience to help bridge the gap between education and employment. Some use it as purely a stepping stone to a new career, or further education, while others have found Newton and Frost a place in which they are happy to stay!

 

For more information please visit www.tomorrows-people.co.uk

Classroom

Classrooms & Educational buildings

As the cost of building a typical ‘brick and mortar’ classroom is somewhat expensive, local schools have approached us to build affordable additional classrooms. Whilst working with them, we have developed an understanding of the needs of creating additional teaching space. Our range of interlocking log cabins have proven very popular as they can be bespoke to a school’s individual requirements in both size and with extras such as windows or insulation. Built using 44mm thick logs and double glazed as standard, our log cabins are built to be durable and to last for years to come. Unlike traditional timber buildings that are constructed using a frame and cladding system, our log cabins are built using interlocking timbers which makes a more rigid and robust building.

As schools need to adhere to budgets, we realise that energy efficiency is key in the design of such classrooms. Based on this we have developed a ‘twin-skin’ system which creates a cavity between the exterior and an interior wall. This allows for additional insulation to be installed within the building ensuring it can be used throughout the year. The cavity area can be used for cabling for electrical purposes or even computer networking.

Watch the video below to see the construction of a classroom we recently built for a local school. Measuring 6.3×8.3m, this building was bespoke to include a storage area at the rear and for several additional windows. With a build time of just five working days, this enabled us to erect the building with the minimum level of disruption to normal classes. The building included floor, roof and wall insulation in the form of Celotex boards. This ensures the building will be kept warm the whole year round while being as energy efficient as possible.

As many schools are looking to teach outside the classroom, we can also provide solutions to supplying and installing undercover areas, such as gazebos available in both octagonal and square shapes. Pergolas can be supplied on request.

For a free quote for your classroom, contact us today. We are happy to advise on the correct building for your school’s needs, whether it is a classroom, offices, or just additional storage space. We understand that cost is an essential consideration and our bespoke building services offers some of the most competitive prices in the South East. A range of our buildings can be seen at Merriments Garden Centre, Hurst Green, East Sussex TN19 7RA