National Shed Week is an annual event run by the curator of the Nations Sheds Andrew Wilcox - Uncle Wilco. The event was started in 2007 to celebrate the British shed in all of its diversity. Partly as a place to escape and also as an architectural phenomenon.
Visitors to the website Readersheds.co.uk can post pictures and descriptions of their shed on the website for others to look at and comment on.
Each year in the spring visitors are invited to vote on their favourite sheds in each of 8 different categories. The public vote is at the end of May and lasts for two weeks. The shed winning the most votes in each category goes forward to the final, where the winner is decided by 'experts' on shed design.
The competition finals unfold over four weeks towards the end of the summer and are covered on a Channel 4 TV mini-series featuring the Amazing Spaces team. Each week the winner in two of the categories is revealed with the overall winner of the competition being announced in the final episode in September.
The two principal figures who decide the category and overall winner are:
Uncle Wilco - the founder of the event. Legend has it that he wrote to 10 Downing street suggesting that it be made a national event, in one of the world's greatest faux pas they turned him down. Not being one to take no for an answer Uncle Wilco pressed ahead and started the event anyway to great success. The event has gone from strength to strength since starting in 2007.
George Clarke - the host of the television show Amazing Spaces. George has experts in design and construction to help and advise him on different aspects of each sheds design. For this series, his advisors are:
The range of sheds on show is truly outstanding with everything ranging from a standard chain store garden shed to bespoke Tardis sheds. The sheds in the competition are divided into eight categories to decide the finalists. The categories in 2017 are:
If I was a betting man, my money would be on a Pub/Entertainment shed, an Eco shed or a Unique shed being the overall winner. With a Cabin/Summerhouse or Workshop shed as outsiders.
However, like the Grand National, the field is wide open and who knows which shed will win the overall title this year.
If you are keen on entering the competition the requirements for entry are very simple a minimum of two photos are needed, one of the outside and one of the inside of your shed. It is free to list your shed on the site and of course to share your new creation with your friends so that they can comment and ultimately support you when it comes to time to vote.
I will be uploading my main shed on to the site for 2018. It fits into the Workshop /Studio shed category. I mainly use the shed for woodwork, fixing my bikes and storing lots of screws and bits of metal in screw top glass jars. ;-)
As well as a description of what I use the shed for, I will be including a few details of its construction.
|The first winner in 2007 was Tony with his Roman Temple shed|
|The following year in 2008 the winner was Tims pub shed.|
|The winner in 2009 was Steven Harwood's Kite Cabin in West Wales.|
|The winner in 2010 was the Pirate themed, Lady Sarah out of Worthing created by Reg Miller.|
|The winner in 2011 was 'Songs from the shed' owned by John Earl from Clevedon in Somerset. John's shed is full of unusual objects and he has recorded over 1,000 sessions with a huge variety of bands in the shed.|
|Another pub shed won the prize in 2012. This heart shaped shed at the heart of John (Henry) Plumridge' garden in Shrewsbury, Shropshire has a collection of over 500 bottled real ales and 110 different ciders. The shed has evolved from a pergola to a gazebo and now it is just a great venue for parties.|
|The winner in 2013 was Alex Hollands's Boat Roofed Shed, from Machynlleth in Mid-Wales.|
|The winner in 2014 was created by Joel Bird and was called The Allotment Shed.|
|The winner in 2015 was the Inshriach Distillery by Walter Micklethwait who refurbished an old chicken shed and 'upcycled' lots of items that he had stored on his farm in the Scottish Highlands.|
|In 2016 the competition was won by Kevin Herbert with a lovely green roofed shed entitled 'The West Wing'|
|In 2017 Ben Swanborough was the worthy winner. He got a bit carried away when his daughter asked him to build a shed in the garden with a budget of £500! No prizes for sticking to the budget, huge kudos for such a lovely crafted design.|
|Could you be the winner in of Shed of the Year in 2018?|
So go ahead don't delay visit readersheds.co.uk and put details of your shed on the site. Who knows next year it could be your shed that wins the accolade - Shed of the Year.