Landscape design – In Ex Design

Visualisation produced by The Archilime Collective


In Ex Design were approached to create a family home within a historic walled garden close to the River Exe in East Devon.

Getting planning permission wasn’t a forgone conclusion; not only is the site Curtilage Grade 2 listed, but it is also within an area of outstanding natural beauty and is classed as open countryside (outside a built up area).

We worked hard to design a building that was something special and something East Devon District Council would approve.  We submitted a full planning & listed building application for a new dwelling within the walled garden off Courtlands Lane, Exmouth in August 2022 – we were delighted to receive an approval notice almost a year later.

When you are looking to buy a house sometimes your budget doesn’t quite meet your needs! That is what our client found recently!

With a brief for 3 double bedrooms, a large open plan living space, HAS TO BE IN LYMPSTONE… with a large garden, double garage and space for a pool! ‘Now come on’ we said… they don’t want much do they?

Well sometimes you just need a bit of vision and you can have what you need, other times you need ‘our vision’ and we will get you what you want.

Living in the beautiful village of Shaldon in South Devon, our client’s property overlooks the Teign Estuary and the Sea. The house has an amazing outlook but the garden felt awkward and unusable. The elevated position of the house meant the site was cut into the hillside. This resulted in the use of large retaining walls and a steeply banked garden.

Our clients originally approached us as they wanted to create an outdoor space where they could cook, entertain that would feel like an extension of their living space. The brief later expanded to include the rest of the garden and the front of the house.

We produced a concept for the whole site which we delivered through to completion.

The property is Grade two listed and is one of five grand semi-detached houses located in the St Leonard’s Conservation area of Exeter in Devon, South West England.

The clients, who had recently purchased the property approached In Ex Design with a simple brief. They wanted a space within the house where the whole family could all be together at the same time.

In Ex Design explored how to achieve this connected space, establishing the concept of a small extension and slight alterations to the internal walls. To create rooms which read as different spaces but still felt integrated.

As part of the process of learning and understanding the client’s requirements In Ex Design proposed looking at the house and site as a whole to give a better connection to the garden. Achieved by bringing the garden up to the ground floor new extension and sloping the existing ground down to the basement level. As well as an extensive landscape design scheme.

Historically a single pitched roof extension was added to the side of the property providing a kitchen. The extension was not of high quality and although subservient to the original house looked to be an oddly portioned addition. The scheme proposed a new rear single storey extension, leading off the existing side extension which would be reroofed to match the new. It was proposed to remove the oppressive timber balustrading to the decked area which severely limited the connection between the garden and the house, blocking light and access to the basement.