Oxford Planters

“Very few companies are able to offer bespoke outdoor joinery to the same quality as us,” says Sarah Pierce, Director of Oxford Planters. “Planters are readily available in many outlets but are often mass produced in set sizes and finishes. We handcraft each of our planters, tables, benches and obelisks meticulously, using the finest raw materials and hardwood timbers, in any size, shape and colour.”

Led by Sarah and her husband Leon – a fully qualified architectural joiner and machinist – this specialist joinery company, based in the heart of the Cotswolds, may be small but it is mighty, with commissions from as far afield as the US and the Caribbean.

“Being small enables us to keep an eye on absolutely everything that is made in our workshops,” says Leon. “It ensures quality and a personal service, which is something we’ll never compromise on.”

Sarah, who delivers all UK orders in person, from the Channel Islands to the Scottish Highlands, is committed to providing an outstanding customer experience. But equally she is not afraid to advise a client if their design doesn’t work. “It’s all about longevity,” she explains. “We want to give our clients exactly what they want but in a way that will last. Very often, designs drawn on paper can be beautiful but don’t necessarily work once marked out to scale. There are many small details which we take into account when we translate a design into a beautifully hand-crafted piece of furniture. As a specialist company we look at the design and check that it allows for the natural movement in the timber and check that the angles have been designed to prevent water from gathering in the joints, and so on.”

Materials are important, too. As a hardwood specialist, Oxford Planters uses oak and iroko for a natural finish and Accoya for all painted products. “Last year, we were commissioned to make a 33-metre bench for the Thiepval Memorial in Amiens, northern France. It forms part of the Welsh Peace Garden, which commemorates the end of the First World War. We made the bench in Accoya because it’s one of the hardiest timbers available, with a 50-year no-rot guarantee.

“Our philosophy is to make it properly the first time and make it last,” explains Sarah. “Oxford Planters are proud makers of exceptional, timeless pieces of outdoor furniture that will adorn your property for years to come.”