RHS Wisley Glasshouse, Surrey

External Decorative Concrete Path, Landings and Stair Treads

Lazenby’s Stone Buff meanders purposefully around this iconic and cathedral-like Glasshouse at RHS Wisley. Installed at the end of 2006, the Glasshouse was officially opened by the Queen in 2007 to celebrate the RHS Bicentenary. Photography by Lazenby.

ClientLandscape Architect
ColourStone Buff
Visual/textural finishRiven stone
Project typeNew Build

Technical detail:

Lazenby installed over 3000m2  Stone Buff decorative concrete paths and landings 100mm deep over a concrete subbase, that meander through Wisley’s Glasshouse. Stone Buff concrete stair treads, fixed to steel structures, link the different levels to create an exciting route through the 12m high building. The installation took 4 weeks of carefully planned concrete pours and involved a team of 8 Lazenby Master Craftsmen, led by Ed Lazenby, founder and Managing Director of EJ Lazenby Contracts Limited.

Lazenby was chosen to install this extensive and important feature, because of the company’s exceptional experience and pedigree installing decorative concrete, in theme parks and public spaces internationally. The riven stone effect was created by hand using a modified rake. The decorative concrete has to withstand warm and humid conditions and exceptionally heavy footfall due to RHS Wisley – and this Glasshouse in particular – being one of the most beloved and popular features in the UK.

The Stone Buff colouring was selected to create a warm and inviting start to a wild and adventurous journey that explores Wisley’s world-class collection of tender plants. The glasshouse is divided into three computer-controlled climates – dry, moist temperate and tropical. It also features a large reddish-brown rock outcrop – actually concrete – at the centre with a 5m waterfall cascading over it.