Summer sizzlers

Round & About

June heralds the start of summer and that means one thing – spending time in the garden with your nearest and dearest with a drink in one hand and a burger in the other, enjoy!

Can there be anything better than enjoying lazy summer days in the company of friends and family soaking up the sun’s rays while sipping something cool and refreshing in your garden?

With the image in your head and before you reach for another ice cube to plonk in that drink, there’s some prep to do.

There’s something special about sitting out eating on your patio or decking that feels almost luxurious, perhaps thoughts of sun-soaked holidays are in your mind, so how to recreate that at home.*

Imagine your outdoor space is another room in your home, the lawn is the carpet, plants the decoration, you get the idea so just as you’d fashion your indoor space why not do the same outdoors with a few additions / exceptions / tweaks.

The biggest difference of course, is that you are outdoors so top priority has to be shelter or a shade of some variety to allow for the vagaries of the great British weather. We all know how unpredictable it can be but don’t let that deter you and yours from dining al fresco. Shades, sails and awnings have become popular in recent years to add a stylish touch and are the ideal way to protect you from a shower and also to ward off excess heat. Depending on your home and garden, perhaps a pergola, gazebo or lean to is a more permanent option?

Bridge the gap between home and garden with a sleek, high quality, durable awning from Outashade. Available in a variety of styles from traditional to contemporary, they feature modern hard wearing fabrics and boast lightweight folding arms. Most awnings are motorised now, but they also offer manual operation for less frequent use. Outashade give you a shaded patio and a cool home – a winning formula. Visit to view the full range of their products.

Don’t neglect your ‘flooring’ once you’ve dealt with the ‘ceiling’. A large colourful rug enhances the indoors out idea, hard wearing and weather resistant, they’ll add to the outdoor lounge look.

If it’s going to be a late night, you’ll need some well-thought out lighting to keep the party going – solar powered ones are a popular choice, from strings of fairy lights to lantern styles available in brilliant or warm white or add a splash of colour.

You’ve created your ‘room’ so now it’s time for the good stuff, bring on the food and drink. Perhaps you’re a stalwart fan of the original BBQ, no summer garden feast is complete without one, whether it’s the traditional kettle style, gas powered for cheats, or you’ve gone the whole hog and got a brick built one and talking of brick built additions, pizza ovens have grown in popularity over the past few years and with an endless array of toppings to choose from to conjure up your perfect pizza, why wouldn’t you?

If you’re in need of inspiration, head to Ascot Racecourse on July 20th and 21st for Smoke and Fire Festival where you can enjoy family fun with gourmet barbeque flavours from award-winning street food vendors and pop-up restaurants. Get up close with live fire and BBQ demos and smokers. Rides, workshops, a mini real ale and cider festival and live music all add to the entertainment.

If space allows and you really want to go all out then there’s no better way to really bring the indoors out than with an outdoor kitchen, guaranteed to add the wow factor.

Storage space is a useful addition so you can leave some utensils there permanently and of course, the obligatory chef’s apron, while a fresh herb garden will enhance the flavours of your food for extra special finishing touches.

You can’t enjoy the full al fresco experience without a drink, outdoor bars became all the rage during that time a few years ago when we couldn’t go out but as long as you’ve got plenty of ice you’ll be doing fine.

Family-run Bourne Buildings in Farnham supply quality garden buildings of all structures, designs and styles fit for all budgets and all gardens. From sheds, greenhouses and playhouses to garden offices, summerhouses, workshops and garden bars, there’s sure to be a building that’s perfect for your garden and your needs. How about an open-sided structure where you can dine looking out over your garden to enjoy the summer fun. See what’s on offer at Bourne Buildings Ltd

There’s a great summer of sport ahead of us with the Euros from June 14th to July 14th, swiftly followed by the Olympics, July 26th to August 11th, and you won’t want to miss a minute so how about adding a big screen to complete your entertaining?

Of course, there’ll be times when you just want someone else to do the entertaining so make the most of our wonderful local pubs in the summer and chill out in one of their gardens with a beer or the quintessential summer drink, a Pimm’s.

* Sun not guaranteed!