My input after being asked to assist Lesley Bremnes with her entry to the


Le Paradou June 2007

Two years ago in 2005 I had the great pleasure to meet Lesley Bremnes, here, at Le Paradou as my guest. I treasure the kind gifts of her, signed, books! This initial contact led to Lesley inviting me to help her with the designing and planning of her entry submissions for the Chelsea Flower Show in 2007! Lesley already had her basic format, ideas and layout in her head, but requested further ideas in respect of my knowledge of fishkeeping, pond building, natural history and as an inventor and craftsman linked with my technical skills. Her intitial plan required my help in teaching her computer graphics skills to formulate those thoughts. Then further ideas to make the designs more unusual in content and workable. This started with Lesley asking me to design a "musical water chamber" at the head of the stream (top right). I suggested tubular bells and chimes at first, but she wanted something more unusual, possibly using bells. My ideas for this are below, a chamber utilising bamboo cantilvered tubes to drive the chimes. The speed controlled by the water flow. ( At the last moment, just before creation, this idea was shelved due to the cost of the bells, and, apparently, the chinese advisor not being keen ) By request, I therefore simplified the idea back to a simple set of chimes, the clapper being driven by water spray. I had proposed the idea of Koi Carp in the lowest "tranquil" pool. It was found that we could no longer have live animals or fish in the show, and so the idea was deleted. I had also enthused Lesley with the idea of having a whirlpool just above the centre bridge, the flow being offset to produce this effect and then disappear down a bore hole to well up in the tranquil pool. I suggested using colouring in the building of this one section similar to the strata at Roussillon, but more subtle to continue the natural rock colours to be used in the main garden.


The layers of ochres at Roussillon

Lesley's final designs changed greatly from the above as you see by the final work below, but I feel pleased that I was able to offer her choices and help her formulate her final path. I congratulate her upon her success in gaining a bronze, as she well deserves after such hard work and effort to gain entry and complete such a project for many years.


The new pond at Le Paradou becoming established.

In 2010 we moved to Theddlethorpe in Lincolnshire and in 6 months planned and executed all of the work below - and more. Films showing all of this may be seen on my youtube channel.

Final plans

The gardens in July 2011

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All images copyright © Peter Wood