Coblands Landscapes celebrates 40 years

Celebrating 40 years and onwards

In 1973 on 6th April in the year that the UK, became member of the European Economic Community, thousands strike over pay and prices and  inflation was 8% and rising, Coblands Landscapes became incorporated as a limited company.

Its activities, largely then in the domestic market had grown firstly operating at Ivy Hatch near Sevenoaks, as a department within Coblands Nurseries, transferring in 1972 to Tunbridge Wells on the acquisition of the garden centre and landscape business in Eridge Road of Arthur Charlton & sons this by its then parent company, Coblands Nurseries.

Despite the economic gloom and industrial relations difficulties this was a time of swift change for landscaping becoming an identifiable industry. Coblands Landscapes joined the newly formed British Association of Landscape Industries in 1972, a body amalgamated from several trade organisations in an effort to speak with a single voice for this rapidly expanding sector.

Along with the huge post-war redevelopment of towns and cities in the 50’s and 60’s there came recognition of the importance of the treatment space between buildings for its landscape and amenity value. The work of Landscape Architects such as Jellicoe and Crowe was evident in new towns where building occurred within planned landscape.

Coblands Landscapes became involved in some of these innovative projects including the New Village of New Ash Green in Kent when Bovis took over the project from Span implementing landscape schemes by Landscape Architect Preben Jakobsen.

For Coblands Landscapes in 1973, staff boosted by those of Charltons rose to 10, who were managed by Geoffrey West, remaining in charge of the business until 2001 by which time staff numbered about 30.

Coblands Landscapes became increasingly involved with public authority commercial sector contractor with including significant projects for Greater London Council and Inner London Education Authority until their demises in 1986 and 1990.

From Grain Power Station site in the late 1970’s

Building the Holocaust Memorial Garden in Hyde Park in 1983

In 1992 the Landscape business moved again to purpose built offices and its current base in rural Tunbridge Wells.

A policy change in the nineties saw the phasing out of most domestic works and the expansion of grounds maintenance services that then included multi-site contracts for British telecom attending over 100 telephone exchanges and for London Electricity to service over 2000 electricity substations.

This decade saw the commencement of what have proved to be continuous and lasting relationships with clients such as English Heritage for the maintenance of historic gardens, Liberty Property Trust UK at Kings Hill, West Malling and Turkey Mill Business Park in Maidstone.

Similarly, in landscape construction long term associations have been established with building companies such and Willmot Dixon and Wates Construction.

40 years on and we are placed today with a responsive contract management team and flexible work force with diverse skills, we continue to expand our scale and range of landscaping activities, because we believe the immense value of good landscape development contributes to the quality of our lives and the built environment.

Accreditations and Memberships: Coblands Landscapes are founder members of British association of Landscape Industries (BALI) we hold numerous awards from BALI Annual National Landscape Awards. We are also SSIP accredited and are members of the Landscape Training Group.

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