Although the year is edging forwards towards spring, it may not feel like ‘sitting in the garden’ weather quite yet! However, we do like to be optimistic, and it really won’t be long until the weather improves and we’ll be thinking about venturing outside again – possibly with a coat on and holding a large cup of tea! To help you get ready for the spring, we’re taking a look at garden benches and what you can get for your money.
The amount you want to spend will obviously depend on your budget, but the amount of space you have and how much you think you’re going to use your bench will also be factors. Metal benches look pretty, but can need cushions to make them comfortable and may also need repainting at some point. Wooden benches are classics, but will need oiling or treating if you want them to last, and can be heavy to move around.
Save – garden benches under £100
Metal garden bench in sage, Wilko
A simple, classic-looking bench, this design would suit contemporary settings and costs £75.
Pros: Larger than other benches we’ve seen for the money, and made of powder coated steel for durability.
Cons: Fiddly to put together, and quite heavy to move once it’s up.
Folding metal bistro bench in clay, The Farthing
Neat and simple, this folding bistro bench will look good in any environment and costs £99.
Pros: Great for small gardens or even balconies, it will fold up out of the way when not in use.
Cons: Probably isn’t that comfortable for long periods, so ideal if you just need a place to sit when enjoying your morning cuppa. Otherwise, you’d probably need to invest in a seat pad.
Norfolk wood bench, B&Q
At just £43, this wood and metal bench is the very definition of cheap ‘n’ cheerful.
Pros: It’s nice looking and certainly won’t break the bank – ideal if you’re not sure how much you’re going to use it.
Cons: It needs two people to assemble it and needs treating a couple of times a year if it’s going to be left outside. It’s unlikely to last forever, either, as the price will be reflected in the materials used.
Two seater metal bench, Sue Ryder
At just £79.99, this bench is good value and you’re helping to support a charity at the same time.
Pros: Ideal for smaller spaces, and would look good covered in bright cushions.
Cons: It’s powder coated but not rust proof, and it’s recommended that you cover or store it in the winter months. The design is also very ornate and may not be to everyone’s taste.
Splurge – garden benches costing £100 to £500
Verdi three seat wooden garden bench, Norfolk Leisure
A contemporary, sturdy large bench, this looks like good value at £219.
Pros: Has an angled back for added comfort and comes with its own seat pad.
Cons: You’ll have to remember to keep taking that seat pad indoors with you when it rains!
Roma polished concrete and wood bench, Jo Alexander
This fibre reinforced polished concrete and wood bench, with an acacia lime-washed wooden frame, has an matt finish and a smooth top. It costs £395.
Pros: Unusual and hard wearing, this will be a feature in your garden and can also be used as an imprompt table.
Cons: It has no back, so needs to be placed against a wall if you plan to lounge on it.
Roble St George 5ft bench, Alexander Rose
A sturdy, classic design, this traditional wooden bench sits up to three.
Pros: Advertised as ‘weather resistant and durable for 25 years’, this could be a good choice if you’re planning to use your bench a lot.
Cons: Requires self assembly.
Lutyens style bench, House of Bath
Originally designed over a century ago for Gertrude Jekyll’s masterpiece Edwardian garden, the Lutyens bench has since become an icon of architectural excellence. This version costs £179.95.
Pros: Made of hard-wearing, certified acacia wood, this bench has a maximum load of over 50 stone so must be pretty sturdy!
Cons: Requires some self assembly, and being made of wood will require treatment.