Head Judge: Andrew Wilcox
Channel 4’s Head Judge & Founder of Shed of the Year Andrew Wilcox has worked to help design an impartial judging system for WhatShed. The judging system uses many different parameters to help give a large degree of impartiality to the way we select products for each of the league tables we do. You can read more about the system here.
When you take great pride in your garden, quality sheds can be the ideal finishing touch. They take care of all your garden storage needs, but have that little bit extra that elevates them above the ordinary, and of course they can become a talking point among your neighbours and friends. If you’re looking for a superior quality shed that’s just right for you, take a look at our WhatShed guide to the very best quality sheds that can be bought online in the UK today.
Here at WhatShed we review all varieties of garden building, so we know what makes a truly quality shed stand out from the crowd. We also wanted to ensure that they were easy for consumers to find and purchase, which is why we’ve only considered sheds that are sold by the UK’s ten leading online retailers of garden buildings. They make up more than 95% of the market, so they’re the retailers that you can trust. more...
We were pleased, in such an exacting category, to find ten excellent sheds worthy of a place inside our league table. We then ranked them according to many factors such as cost and value for money, build quality, visual appeal, and value adding factors such as long extended warranties.
All of the sheds featured in our league sheds are sheds of quality, of course, but for this special quality sheds guide we have discounted any shed that doesn’t utilise tongue and groove cladding throughout. Qualifying sheds also have to have strong frames, and be visually appealing, offering consumers above what they could ordinarily expect. Finally, we have discounted sheds with a base area of ten foot by ten foot or greater, thus excluding log cabins and workshops. With these criteria in place, we were pleased to find ten models worthy to be in our league table.
With such a uniformly high quality list, selecting an overall champion was difficult. Well done then to the ten foot by eight foot Shed-Plus apex shed; thanks to its great value, classic design and long warranty period it tops our league table of the very best quality sheds that can be bought online in the UK today. From sheds to greenhouses, WhatShed’s independent reviews can help you find your ideal garden building.
10' x 8' Forest Tongue & Groove Apex Pressure Treated Wooden Double Door Shed (3.10m x 2.63m)
One thing that unites all the quality sheds in this WhatShed league table is that they use high quality components that not only look good, but are built to last. A perfect example is this ten foot by eight foot apex shed from Shed-Plus. Smooth planed tongue and groove cladding has been used throughout, giving it a luxurious appearance that caught our eye from the moment we saw it. It’s also very strong and stable, thanks to a 45 x 28mm frame which is much thicker, and therefore resilient, than the framing we see on standard quality sheds. With a great value for money price as well, this deserves to be sitting in the top position.
We were pleased to find that added value had also been provided in the shape of a 15 year warranty against rot. The manufacturer has been able to do that because all the timbers have been given an initial pressure treatment. This gives them very long lasting protection against rot, and it also means that the owner won’t have to add their own wood preserver treatments on a yearly basis. On a shed of this size, one of the largest quality sheds in our guide, that can save a considerable amount of time over the years, and money too. Another feature we liked was the wide opening double doors, making it very easy to move objects in and out.
10' x 8' Shed Republic Ultimate Heavy Duty Reverse Apex Workshop - Single Door (3.02m x 2.44m)
These quality sheds share a base area of approximately ten foot by eight foot with our table topper, and yet they have a very different look. That’s because this shed utilises a reverse apex roof, meaning that the shed is wider at the front than it is deep. This makes it ideal for those whose gardens are a little shallower, or who would find it hard to site a traditionally oriented shed. It’s also a little more expensive than the Shed-Plus shed we just looked at, which accounts for their relative positioning, although we still feel that this represents very good value for money with a price tag of under a thousand pounds. Of course, this looks even better value for money when you take the 15 year manufacturer’s warranty provided here into consideration.
Quality sheds as large as this one can be used for multiple purposes, from storing gardening tools to acting as a workshop for either leisure or business purposes. That’s why we were pleased to find two large windows on the front panel. They allow a lot of natural light to enter, which we think is essential if you plan on working inside the shed, and as they can both be opened they can be used for ventilation purposes too on a hot day. We were also glad to see that they feature toughened glass, a quality component that is virtually shatter proof.
7' x 5' Shed-Plus Champion Heavy Duty Pent Shed - Single Door on Right (2.21m x 1.6m)
Garden sheds don’t have to be large to be luxurious or to show their true quality, as this seven foot by five foot model shows. It’s the second smallest of the quality sheds within our league table, and yet there’s still more than enough storage space inside to suit most small to medium sized gardens. This also means that owners of more compact gardens can also enjoy a shed of the highest quality, and with an initial pressure treatment and a 15 year warranty against rot in place, it’s one they can rely on. It’s also the second cheapest shed here, and this combination of toughness and value is enough to earn it a place inside our top three.
Whilst most of the other quality sheds in this top ten guide make use of an apex roof, this model has adopted a pent roof. We know that many people prefer this very traditional look, and as it’s less obtrusive than an apex shed it may be easier to hide away behind a fence or wall, thus shielding it from prying eyes. Security is also enhanced by a key operated lock, which is something we always welcome in these days when shed security is so important. Another advantage of the pent roof is that this shed may be able to be situated underneath overhanging branches, in areas where an apex shed would not be suitable.
BillyOh Expert Tongue and Groove Apex Workshop
These eight foot by eight foot quality sheds lack some of the features found in our top trio; for example the timbers haven’t been pressure treated, and it doesn’t have toughened glass. It also doesn’t include a floor as standard, although a high quality floor can be added for just over sixty pounds, which we highly recommend. It does, however, provided exceptional value for money for such a well built shed, carrying a price tag of less than five hundred pounds, with a 10 year warranty included. This makes quality sheds available to even more people, and is one of the reasons that it gains such a lofty position within our league table.
Another reason that this is placed above tougher quality sheds is that it’s one of the most visually pleasing wooden sheds we’ve reviewed. It has a very traditional apex shed design, with double doors for easy access at the front, but what really caught our eye was the bank of four windows that run across the full length of one side. It means that this is a very well illuminated shed, which also means that it feels very welcoming when inside. If you want a quality shed on a tight budget, then this is well worthy of consideration.
Waltons 10 x 6 Overlap Double Door Apex Wooden Shed
These quality sheds are an especially appropriate choice for environmentally aware gardeners. That’s because they are produced in conjunction with the Woodland Trust, the charity committed to maintaining this country as a green and pleasant land. Five percent of the proceeds from every sale go to the charity, which we found a very nice touch. We were also impressed, of course, to find the the sheds lived up to the excellent name attached to them, and at less than eleven hundred pounds for a shed measuring approximately ten foot by eight foot we feel they represent reasonable value for money as well.
As you might expect this is a very traditional looking building, and one that we found very pleasing on the eye. It’s also made from sustainably sourced timbers, again as you might expect, but we were pleasantly surprised to find just how tough they were. The floor, at 16mm thick, is among the strongest we’ve seen in a shed of this size, making it ideal if you want to install machinery or furniture inside. The framing too, at 56 x 56mm, is among the thickest we’ve seen on any of the sheds we’ve reviewed. That makes this an excellent choice if your garden is in an exposed area that’s often subject to strong winds.
10' x 8' Windsor Groundsman Dutch Barn Wooden Shed (3.06m x 2.57m)
While all of the quality sheds featured within this top ten league table are made of wood, we were pleased to find that doesn’t mean that they all have to look the same. This shed has a very different appearance to the ones that have preceded it, and it’s one that we found very aesthetically pleasing. It takes as its inspiration a traditional Dutch barn, as emphasised by its four sided roof. This is not only effective at carrying rainwater away, we’re sure it will also be effective at attracting admiring glances from friends and neighbours.
The looks weren’t all that impressed us about these continental styled quality sheds. We were also impressed by the very wide double doors. They open to a width of four and a half feet, so this could be an ideal garden shed in which to store a ride on lawnmower. We were also pleased to see that a key operated lock is included as standard, so whatever you do decide to keep inside your shed should be much more secure. It was also good to see that although the warranty provided by the manufacturer is only for 10 rather than 15 years, the integrated floor joists have been pressure treated, which gives the structure as a whole protection from wet rot caused by ground moisture.
8' x 6' Forest Overlap Apex Pressure Treated Wooden Double Door Shed (2.4m x 1.91m)
We know that many people prefer very traditional looking garden buildings, and they’re sure to be impressed by these apex roofed quality sheds from Mercia. The tongue and groove cladding used throughout means that this shed catches the eye, and it was obvious from the first moment that we were looking at a very high quality shed. We were even more impressed when we looked into the cladding a little further, as the manufacturer has used 16mm thick cladding. This is 25% thicker than the standard tongue and groove cladding we usually see, and twice as thick as typical overlap cladding, and this brings real benefits when it comes to strength, stability, and weather resistance.
We feel that the eight foot by eight foot dimensions of these quality sheds are ideal for small and medium sized gardens, as they have a good amount of storage space inside without being so large that they take up too much room from the lawn. There’s also more than enough room to move around in, a factor helped by the taller than average ridge and eaves heights. With double doors as well, this could be a good choice as a cost effective compact workshop, as it’s easy to manoeuvre large or wide objects in and out. Once again, we were pleased to see the security boosting inclusion of a key operated lock, a good indicator of quality.
Waltons 6 x 8 Pressure Treated Shiplap Single Door Apex Wooden Shed
These quality sheds share an apex roof with many others inside this WhatShed top ten guide, and yet they have an original look that grabbed our attention at first sight. That’s because the two windows on this shed are included on the front panel rather than on the sides, and they positioned on either side of a centrally positioned single hinged door. We really liked the Georgian style cross hatching on the windows, and we were even more pleased to find that toughened glass had been used for the glazing. This not only makes them more secure, it also provides added peace of mind for owners who are likely to have young children playing in or around the building.
The other design feature of these high quality sheds that really stood out for us was the overhanging roof; it creates a canopy that gives added protection against the rain as well as providing a welcome shaded area outside the entrance on sunny days. We also liked the option to upgrade this shed by adding features such as in initial pressure treatment and a cedar slatted roof that’s as attractive as it is functional. Only the lack of an extended warranty and a higher than average price tag prevents this eight foot by six foot shed from climbing much further up our top ten league table.
Tiger Value Overlap Apex Shed
The ninth entry in our league table takes quality sheds in a different direction, as it earns its place not so much through its toughness, durability and build quality but through its unique designer looks. Whilst it may not be to the taste of traditionalists, we found the styling both original and exciting. The first thing that struck us was the apex roof that overhangs on all four sides; we also liked the triangular window on the single hinged door, allowing just enough light to make storage and retrieval easy, without allowing passers by to see if anything valuable is being stored inside.
Whilst it’s the aesthetic appeal of these quality sheds that makes them stand out from the crowd, we were still impressed by the quality of components used, and by just how tough they are. Tongue and groove cladding has been used throughout, but with a thickness of 19mm it’s significantly stronger than we usually see. With a base area of 1.80 x 1.80m this is also among the smallest high quality sheds we’ve reviewed, and although this makes it suitable for people with a restricted amount of lawn space available its large price tag and back of an extended warranty account for its position towards the foot of our table.
8' x 6' Shed-Plus Champion Heavy Duty Apex Single Door Shed (2.42m x 1.82m)
We always prize competitive value and good value for money, but sometimes when it comes to quality sheds you have to push the boat out a little. That’s why although we accept that our final shed’s asking price of nearly four thousand pounds may put it beyond the reach of some consumers, especially as it has only a mid sized base area of approximately six foot by eight foot, we still feel it deserves a place inside our top ten. Indeed, if you have a budget that stretches to this price and want a garden building that’s truly unique then this should be near the top of your shortlist.
These really are quality sheds that look like no other sheds that we’ve reviewed. They have a garden pod design that will make them a garden feature in their own right, and yet the attractive curves of the building will still carry rainwater away. The three vertically placed windows on the single door were another eye catching, and yet practical, feature. We were also impressed by the high quality timber used, although we would have liked to see an initial pressure treatment applied by the manufacturer and a long extended warranty included with a shed of this price, rather than the one year given here.