Shed Type and Roof Size
The first thing that struck us about this playhouse is just how well proportioned it is, and in fact it has one of the largest volumes of all the playhouses we’ve reviewed at a similar price level. The overall width is 1.85m and the overall depth is 1.30m, so you’ll need to make sure that you have a flat area of at least these dimensions available on which to position the playhouse. There were many reasons that we liked the apex roof at the summit, and one is that being made out of polypropylene plastic it’s very durable and very resistant to rain, and yet is lightweight and easy to manoeuvre into place during installation. It also gives a generous ridge height of 1.32m and an eaves height of 1.01m.
These accommodating dimensions mean that there’s lots of space for the children or grandchildren to enjoy. You’ll be able to include a large selection of toys and games, and it makes an ideal all weather play area for when it’s raining outside.
Cladding, Frame and Floor
The children will love the appearance of the playhouse, as it does look like a house for grown ups that’s been shrunk down just for them. What we liked most about it however was the tough and high quality cladding used. Tongue and groove cladding makes up the walls, and it locks tightly together to keep rain out and heat in. At 12mm thick it’s as thick as many full sized wooden sheds and workshops we review, so it feels very strong and stable when assembled.
We were also pleased to see that a floor has been included as standard, which isn’t always the case on the playhouses we’ve reviewed. It’s made of cost effective solid sheet material, and at 9mm thick this provides more than adequate support for young and energetic children. Even more pleasing was the inclusion of pressure treated runners that protect the base by elevating it away from ground moisture.
Treatment Requirements and Warranty
We were glad to find that the timbers had been given a dip treatment with preservative, as this provides vital initial protection. It does mean, however, that the onus is on the customer to keep up preservative treatments on an annual basis, but that needn’t be too time consuming a task even on a playhouse of this size. If the treatment schedule is adhered to, the manufacturer provides a 10 year warranty against rot, which we feel is generous.
As well as adding wood preserver, we recommend that the wood is painted. There are two reasons for this: firstly it will create a vivid colouring that children love, and secondly it gives added protection to wood by stopping it fading because of the UV in the sun. The polypropylene roof is naturally UV stable, so there’s no need to worry about fading there.
Doors and Windows
The door was another feature of this playhouse that we really liked. It has a width of 0.49m which is easily enough for most primary school aged children to get through, even if they’re carrying their favourite doll or toy. What we liked most about it, however, was its split design, meaning that the upper and lower sections swing open independently like a stable door. It’s a fun entranceway, and one that we can imagine children utilising to the full in their games.
On either side of the door is a large window. Once again we were glad to see that they had been designed to appeal to children, with their attractive cross hatched design. Even more importantly they feature styrene glass which is much tougher than standard glazing, and shatter resistant as well.
Safety and Security
Safety is vitally important when it comes to play areas, so we were very pleased to find that it complies with both of the latest British safety standards that apply to child safety. The styrene glass is one reason for that, as well as the attention to detail that’s been paid to ensure that there are no sharp edges and no tripping hazards. One thing we feel that is lacking on this playhouse is a secure locking system, so you may not want to keep toys with monetary or sentimental value inside overnight.
Customisation Options and Extras
There are no optional extras available to buy with this playhouse, but that is in itself an indicator of just how much is included as standard. We would advise sourcing a good quality exterior wood paint, and this can be an opportunity to teach your children a few basic DIY skills as well if you let them join in with some supervised painting. You may wish to add a padbolt or padlock as well, but again this will have to be sourced and bought separately.
From the moment we saw it, we knew that this was a high quality playhouse, as shown by the use of tongue and groove cladding for the walls.
Longevity of Materials 8.5/10
The cladding is itself durable and reliable, although annual preservative treatments will need to be carried out to ward off the threat of rot.
This is a mid sized play area on just one level, but there’s easily enough space for two children to enjoy.
Ease of Installation 9/10
This is a very easy to assemble playhouse, especially as the roof is light and easy to install. With a friend’s help, expect to take around two to three hours.
This is a well constructed and good looking playhouse, so we feel that at just over two hundred pounds it represents good value for money.
Final Thoughts: This may not have the bells and whistles that multi-level playhouses have but it’s very safe and very well built, and with the addition of a nice paint scheme we feel it will be very attractive to the youngsters in your life as well. The cladding is reassuringly strong, and the use of a polypropylene roof means that you won’t have to worry about rain coming in or it feeling cold and damp inside. The two windows mean that children can have lots of fun looking out at what’s going on in the garden, and you’ll have the reassurance of knowing that it won’t shatter as a result of accidental impacts.
Prices around: £214.99
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