Planning Investments in Your Home and Garden

Wednesday, May 19 , 2021

Planning Investments in Your Home and Garden

Stone lasts a long time, so you need to plan it properly.  Your garden design, landscaping and building projects are major investments so you want to be sure that you have quality materials and a well considered design.  All our stone is handmade to order and it takes time to craft, so you need to factor that into your timescales. There are so many options available but with many holiday destinations on hold now is a good time to install a pool, a patio or an extension to make the most of your home.


If you are sectioning your garden to add a patio or outdoor swimming pool, balustrade is an effective way to define an area. The balustrade can be colour matched to the other stone around your garden and property or you can paint it any colour you like! We create different styles, but we can match your existing balustrade if you want to extend or repair what you currently have.

Chilstone balustrade around an outdoor swimming pool.

We try to use our components in the best possible configuration to create the look you want in the most cost effective way. Balustrade doesn’t have to be straight, there are ways to create beautifully flowing lines that curve and balustrade can be used to create decadent staircases. Our team can advise you and produce free CAD drawings so you can visualise your plans.

Chilstone balustrade used to create a terrace for alfresco dining.

Balustrade can create an impressive terrace.  It can also make a feature of a garden on a hillside or slope, using steps to access and define manageable garden areas. These can be populated with benches, statues and feature planters. You can also experiment with your flower beds in each section, why not try a tropical theme with banana plants, cannas and hibiscus in one section, with a traditional cottage garden in another, with hollyhocks, roses and cornflowers?

You could pave each section to match your theme. We make paving on request which can be engraved, like many of our products, to create something truly unique. In the past, we’ve even made a brightly coloured, engraved hopscotch! There are too many things to fit in our brochure, it’s just a flavour of what we can make, but please just ask if there’s something you’d like us to create for you.

Use balustrade to make a beautiful terrace that looks out over the rest of the garden, or swimming pool.

Of course, balustrade is perfect to enclose a patio, define a path or just to add romance to a petite garden. You don’t need a sweeping estate to create a beautiful garden. A well designed courtyard will maximise the use of the space you have available and make it an extension of your living space to enjoy all year round.

Create a petite patio and define the boundary between your planted beds and dining area. This is a vintage photograph as we have been is business since the Queen’s coronation!

There are many styles available and we can create a bespoke pattern to match your existing stonework, please just ask as Hever Castle did when we replaced damaged sections from the famous hurricane in the 1980s.

Detail of stone balustrading

Our balustrade comes in a range of styles but we can make it bespoke to match stonework already in place.

Water Features

Another feature that needs planning is a fountain. Make the process as tranquil as possible with some preparation. Think about where your water and power sources are and hire a professional to hook these up for you. The ground needs to be level and secure, you don’t want to place a stone fountain on uneven ground that is prone to land slips, you want a beautiful feature that lasts.

Chilstone’s Kew fountain has been the center piece of award winning stands at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show.

Our fountains and water features aren’t just for large gardens, they can be wall mounted and we can adapt our planters to sit flush with your wall to catch and recirculate the water. We can also adapt statues into fountains. Think about your space and what you need and our team can advise you.

Wall mounted fountains work well to add interest and optimise the space in your garden

Double up with fountains to transform your pond into a striking feature as well as healthy, well oxygenated aquatic environment. The flow of the water tumbling from a fountain will create a restful sound for a ambiance of tranquility, but more importantly it will help to create the right conditions for the fish and other aquatic life. If you have a large pond, two smaller fountains can be more interesting than one large fountain that would dominate the center. Placing fountains and each end of a pond helps the water circulation to aid oxygenation and adding water lilies can reduce the build up of algae.

This smart pond is full of healthy fish. You can add water lilies to add shade for the fish and beautiful blooms.

Of course your water feature doesn’t have to be a fountain, swimming pools, whether indoor or outdoors are huge investments, the paving, surrounding features and embellishments are key to making it a successful project. Stone benches won’t rot and are practical for towels and other items all year round. Columns, urns, statues and planters transform your swimming pool from a practical rectangle of water into a heavenly space you will enjoy and love.

Columns around an indoor swimming pool.


Porticos combine practically and stature. They mark out your entrance and offer shelter from the weather. A badly designed portico will look terrible, it has to be in proportion with the rest of your property and in keeping with the style. A portico needs to be the correct size, if it is too large it will seem heavy and dominate the space and an undersized portico diminishes the perspective from the approach to your property. You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression and you want the installation of a portico right first time.

This portico clearly defines the main entrance, which is important when it is on the side of the property.

A well designed portico can create impact and character for a new build and helps it stay in keeping with the neighbouring  properties, which is particularly important in rural communities or on a street with matching period properties.

A portico needs to be in proportion with the rest of the house and match in with the windows and other stone details.


Gates with smart posts to support them look gorgeous no matter how large your property is. Victorian terraces look dapper with a low garden gate and a well maintained path, tiled in black and white or with rope edging to separate walkways from growing planted beds. Gates work well to clearly define your entrance, which can be really important in the countryside, especially where properties have an entrance along a stretch of A road that could be otherwise missed. Whatever your situation it is important to think about the usage and the level of privacy you desire.


Traditional privacy gates with pier capitals to protect them from rain damage.

Gates will last for years, in our seventy years of business we have supplied gate posts for country estates with traditional finials to modern new builds in urban areas with sleek lines. Plan your space and think about how it will weather. Do you want painted posts or Portland stone that will develop moss and lichen over time? Don’t forget your pier capitals tops that will protect the them from rain damage over the years and can match in with your surrounding walls topped with coping.

Traditionally styled gates that are now vintage as they have been in place for decades. Topped with classic finials for a rural setting.

Remember that our stone is made to order by hand. This allows us to create the detailed finish our customers love, but it takes time to create.

Our handmade product creates fine details, but takes time to produce.


Now, we know that not everyone has the space for a temple, sometimes called a garden pavilion, but they can look make your garden design extraordinary! This new build dream-house has created a wonderful focal point, cleverly placed to admire both the garden and the house depending on where you are standing.

Chilstone pavilion in a well considered landscaped garden. Installed by Hedges and Swan.

Garden pavilions make great patios or bandstands for garden parties. The columns offer support for climbing roses and clematis that can grow right up and over the roof. This garden feature allow you to enjoy the outdoors whatever the British weather throws at you. Add a fire pit or chiminea to enjoy cosy evenings all year round.

Our handmade temple installed by Hedges and Swan.

Our temples are also popular with hotels and venues as they meet registrar requirements for weddings, allowing greater scope for outdoor events and intimate ceremonies.

The landscaped gardens at the Spa Hotel in Tunbridge Wells.

Finishing Touches

Wall coping, well placed planters and statues create the finesse of a well groomed garden. These little touches can protect walls and create a  unique finish. Statues don’t have to be grand statement pieces, our iconic, sleek doves, designed by Ev Mynell can be placed on pedestals. walls or between your planting scheme to look beautiful every season.

Chilstone doves are loved by our customers.

Interesting planters can be as decorative as the plants they house, like this garden designed by Kate Ball, who uses our Harewood Jardiniere on lion’s feet at a center piece. The woven details on this jardiniere look magical covered in frost in winter, so don’t just think about summer when planning your garden.

Private garden designed by Kate Ball

Do think about how the light changes in your garden throughout the day and the seasons, but there are no limits or rules, just create the right spot that makes your heart sing! These little beauties can make all the difference. Fill urns and planters until they over flow with blooms!

A decorative urn and pedestal makes an impressive feature for your planting

Or go for classic evergreen. Create the garden just right for you. Happy planning!

Our Octagonal Jardiniere makes a beautiful feature planter, but it can be adapted into a water feature.

Open by Appointment

We make all our stonework by hand, without power tools or machinery in our workshop in Kent. We have worked this way for almost 70 years, since the coronation of the Queen, to produce the quality detailed work that our customers love. Because we work this way we can adjust your order to accommodate your needs, adding space for cables, drainage holes or embedding steel rods etc. for weight support, depending on your project design, please just ask our team.

Our show gardens display some of our statues, fountains, temples and more.  We are open by appointment and dogs on leads are welcome to accompany you as explore what we offer. Our phone lines are open seven days a week 01892 740866 or email

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