A Canterbury based family demonstrate how to remove an unsightly old concrete fence from sight and clad it cost effectively to take the concrete out of sight, using with our beautifully handcrafted flat top featherboard and trellis panels.

After initially concentrating on improvements to the interior, the homeowners began developing plans to make the small South West facing garden into a place the entire family wanted to use as a communal area for social occasions.

Cleared garden before makeover

Removing old concrete fencing is the aim

Firstly, its important to note the new homeowners’ vision for their project did not include 6ft high old slabs of concrete fencing running from the back of the property to the far end of the garden.

The family’s key considerations were focused around creating an open plan environment where they could grow as a family, ensure privacy, and allow their children to play while being able to host friends.

The requirements were to:

  • Replace or hide the ugly concrete fencing
  • Maintain privacy using 6ft fencing
  • Screen the wheelie bins from sight
  • Include soft garden features
  • Use naturally occurring materials

Being sandwiched between terraced Victorian-era properties overlooking both sides of the garden meant using 6ft fencing was essential to helping maintain the family’s privacy. With this in mind, the family surveyed the garden to understand how high the existing concrete fencing was and whether they could cost effectively remove and replace the precast concrete fencing.

Old style concrete fence

The family considered the pros and cons for dismantling precast concrete fencing and installing new fencing in its place but decided not to proceed due to the amount of time, effort and cost involved; choosing to conduct further research into timber fencing options.

For advice about concrete or wooden fence posts see our blog.

On built on the left side of the garden, sat an old 1m high picket fence which was no longer fit for purpose and didn’t provide much in the way of privacy, so it was recommended to be replaced.

Old rotten picket fencing

Why removing concrete slab fencing is hard

Lifting out heavy concrete slabs is hard. One of the main reasons being they are immensely heavy (in excess 20kgs each) and virtually impossible to move. What’s more, the practicalities of transporting and dismantling an entire concrete fence run with concrete posts is time consuming and expensive, it requires space too, as you will likely need to hire a skip for the disposal.

Choosing timber fencing over concrete

After considerable time spent conducting research into the differences between timber fencing, timber posts and concrete posts and even PVC fencing, the family visited open days at RHS Hampton. They investigated the handcrafted nature of our timber fencing products and our 25 year guarantee at Jacksons Fencing. They even discussed the subject of concrete vs wooden fence posts with our Sales team during the event, so when it came to selecting environmentally friendly materials it was a no-brainer to choose our timber fencing. 

1. Our 25 guarantee for fencing, gates and accessories as standard
2. All our timber used is environmentally friendly
3. A variety of contemporary fencing  
4. Simple to install

A tidy solution

After enlisting additional advice from a local garden landscaping firm (JP Beeny) the family opted to clad the old concrete fence with a run of our 1.83m high Featherboard fencing. Our 140mm gravelboards were installed under the fencing for added protection against rot and insect attack, finished with a wide capping rail on the top.

To ensure the concrete was out of sight, the landscaper removed the top layer by carefully paying attention to the heavy nature of the concrete, lifting one slab layer across the top between the posts. The posts were also trimmed down to size to ensure all parts of the old concrete slab fencing were completely hidden from view behind the Featherboard installation. The low paling picket fence on the left side was been replaced with handcrafted Featherboard fence panels, complete with Lattice Trellis panels on the top; known as Trellis Topper panels.

Featherboard clads old concrete fence

Did you know?

Traditionally, Trellis is used to add additional height to a fence while adding a stylish finish but its important to remember: you cannot legally add Trellis to a fence above 2 metres high. For advice covering the subject see our blog: do I need planning permission for trellis toppers.
Lattice trellis - is planning permission needed

The Featherboard fencing runs the length of the long narrow garden down to a full height 1.83m x 1.83m Lattice Trellis panel installed at right angles to the fence, which creates a clever hide for the waste and recycling bins.

At the far end of the garden, there is matching fencing with Trellis and a Featherboard garden gate next to the new shed.
Lattice trellis panel hides bins

All in all the homeowners are happy to have found and installed a cost effective solution to replace the ugly concrete fence without having to completely changing the garden's landscape, resulting in all of their project requirements being met.

Additional resources

The Guardian recently published a report discussing why concrete is the most destructive material on Earth. For more information, follow this link

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