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BlackSofa is a brand new type of architectural recruitment agency. A new fresh approach, yet with years of experience behind it.

At the core of our approach is a fabulous line up of talent. Every member of our team comes with almost unbeatable credentials; in fact the team has over 50 years combined top-flight architectural and recruitment experience.

The foundations for our future success will come from a very simple philosophy: only hire the very best so we can give you the very best.

Giving you the very best means building careers that go way beyond expectations.

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As part of the RedSofa family our offices are in Shoreditch. Cool on the outside and cool on the inside. The perfect environment for a great architectural recruitment business. Why not pop and see for yourself, you're always welcome.

Address
68 Redchurch Street
London, E2 7DP

Fax
+44 (0)20 3006 8882

Phone
+44 (0)20 7729 5129

News

NATIONAL GARDENING WEEK: 3 GARDENS TO VISIT THIS SUMMER.

Steve Buss 3rd May 2022

It’s National Gardening Week! And to celebrate, we’re sharing with you some of our favourite gardens in the U.K. that we think you should visit this summer!

 

National Gardening Week is held between 2nd and 8th of May and is run by the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) to raise awareness of gardening and horticulture, and to encourage more people to take part in the healthy and productive outdoor activity of gardening.’

 

Kew Gardens (Kew, West London)
Kew is the jewel in the RHS’s crown and one of the most beloved gardens in the UK, and handily situated in West London for those not looking to trek too far out of the capital for a great attraction.

The botanical Gardens at Kew were founded in 1840 and house the largest and most diverse botanical and mycological collections in the world, boasting more than 50,000 living species and a further 8.5 million preserved plant and fungal specimens. The picturesque UNESCO World Heritage site spans 330 acres taking in Kew House, The River Thames, a host of beautiful lakes, tree-top walkways, giant pergoda’s, japanese gardens and a variety of green houses containing some of the most rare and beautiful collections of plants in the world. David Attenborough uses these for a number of his nature shows.

 

 

 

 

Lost Gardens of Helligan (Nr Penzance, Cornwall)
“Anyone who has ever read the book or watched the movie: The Secret Garden will be able to relate to this story. In the early 19th Century: Heligan, a thousand acre estate near Mevagissey, Cornwall was at its zenith. A monumental 16th century gardenesque style walled garden and grounds. Sitting on the temperate peninsula fed by the warming Gulf Stream, which provides the perfect conditions for growing some of the many tropical plants brought back from abroad by traders and explorers during the last 400 years such as Dicksonia Antartica (tree ferns) from Tasmania, Gunnera Manicata from Northern Brazil which combine to form sprawling tropical rainforest like conditions within the borders of the UK.

With the outbreak of WW1, most of the local men went away to fight the war including the custodians and gardeners of the estate, with many sadly not coming home. The estate was left to disrepair until a chance encounter in 1990 when a secret gate was discovered with the message etched into the stone arch “Do not come here to sleep or slumber: August, 1914” signed by all the groundsmen. The grounds were left unattended to overgrow for nearly 80 years until a team of local volunteers led by the now world renowned Tim Smit (The Eden Project) prised their way in and spent the next decade cutting back, pruning and restoring the gardens to their original splendour.

The 80 years of un-capped growth has led to some enormous rhododendrons and camelia’s some of which are over 200 years old. They also fully restored the house walled veg and salad gardens which incorporates an ingenious 16th Century compost heating system which is piped into the large original greenhouses and cold frames to provide heat during the winter to some of the tropical fruits and veg again mostly brought back from the tropics centuries ago.

The lost gardens of Heligan is my favourite garden in the UK as it is local to where I am from, contains probably the best tropical collection in the UK and the fact it has been left to re-wild for 80 years provides a unique resonance to the incredible story behind the gardens and the sympathetic restoral project led by the dedicated volunteers. A true national treasure!”

Hever Castle (Near Sevenoaks, Kent):
A great day trip for all those looking for a day out of London. Hever Castle was built in 1270 and has had many owners since then including Ann Boleyn’s family and more recently the Waldorf Astor’s who have invested a huge amount of time and money restoring the castle and its outstanding gardens to the original splendour that their original designers intended.

The gardens encircle a huge and picturesque lake which faces the property and supplies many hidden creeks and tributaries which are a perfect place for a quiet picnic. The lake is headed by a grand pillared open atrium which in turn leads to some incredible rose gardens and alpine gardens which lead to the main house taking in a number of beautifully crafted bridges. If you have time afterwards do head to the Henry VIII pub about 100m away. It is an incredibly beautiful medieval pub that does fantastic food.

 

 

Images: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/kew-gardens-plant-signs-will-acknowledge-links-to-slavery-wktdk5hfv

https://www.hevercastle.co.uk/visit/gardens/history-hever-gardens/

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