The Shropshire Sheds David and Rosie Hoult have built their shed – called The Hideaway – in a small wooded area of the garden where they enjoy feeding and bird watching.
The trained holistic therapist and her retired husband wanted to create a quiet hideaway and birding retreat.
They’ve done it with a certain style – and now their shed has been shortlisted for the prestigious Cuprinol Shed of the Year 2021 competition.
Entered in the Natures-Haven category, The Hideaway was born from the idea of building a creative bird table from old oak, before the idea turned into a project to build a recycled patio, intended for become a bench.
The project progressed further when David built the hangar frame from recycled materials. As each section was completed, Rosie painted the facade and interior of the hangar to reflect a Moroccan theme.
The shed has now become a great talking point for visitors to the couple, who live in Ploxgreen, between Church Stretton and Shrewsbury.
Rosie said: “ The project has been a tremendous escape and an enjoyable distraction over the past 12 months – evolving from a birdhouse, to the patio, and then to The Hideaway.
“The idea was to create a modest studio-style skin nestled among the trees where I could store bird food and where we could spend time birding.
“It has certainly helped us with both mental health and well-being through what has been a difficult and difficult time and I am sure we will benefit from it for many years to come.”
The competition will now see the 22 finalists lost in the nine categories.
One winner from each will be determined by public vote, before a panel of hangar experts decide which top winner will receive the giant gold crown.
In addition to Eternal Glory, the Grand Prize winner will also receive £ 1,000, a plaque and £ 100 of Cuprinol products.
Chief Judge and Competition Founder Andrew Wilcox said: “The past year has been an incredibly difficult time for all of us and, now more than ever, we recognize the importance of the Humble Hangar.
“Sheds aren’t just unloved brown structures at the back of the garden that house tools and household waste, they’re vital spaces where you can go to relax, work on a project, or let off steam.
“This year’s high caliber entries really prove why we put the competition together in the first place – to highlight the valuable role that hangars can play in our lives, in our businesses and the positive impact they have on our well-being. “
Kirsty Woodbine, Cuprinol, added: “We are overwhelmed by the number and quality of applications we have received this year.
“The hangars were of such a high standard that reducing them to just 22 was an incredibly difficult task.
“The level of innovation, imagination and creativity that we have seen has been incredible, as has the number of people using their sheds as dedicated spaces to help others in their community. This year’s competition was truly a life affirming.
Last year’s shed-building superstar Daniel Holloway won the coveted title of Cuprinol Shed of the Year 2020 after wowing the judges with his nature-inspired Bedouin Tree-Shed hideaway, built around two trunks of trees in his back garden.
Ashley Bates won the competition’s very first Special Mention in 2020, having created The Shed School to help educate children while the lockdown closed classrooms.
Public voting for the contest opened last night.
In the 15th year of the competition, Nathan Macara and Rebecca Roseff transformed a corner of their garden in Great Malvern, Herefordshire, into a place where the biggest and the smallest of horseshoe bats can relax .
Father Len Black of Inverness advanced to the final with The Oratory Of St Joseph summer pavilion. The Catholic Priest broadcast Mass from the hangar daily during the lockdown, drawing viewers from Essex to Australia.
Influencer Danielle Zarb-Cousin also wowed the judges with her 1970s-inspired Creme de Menthe bar in her parents’ backyard, which she created after a breakup.
Other finalists include specialist bra fitter Joanna van Blommestein, who built the Bra Boss lingerie store in her summer home.
Isle of Wight resident Nicholas Pointing built a Chitty Chitty Bang Bang-inspired hangar because he wanted a space to build a replica of the car from the movie.