What Other Outdoor Buildings Companies Don’t Want You To Know

When looking for wooden sheds it appears very straight forward to buying a garden shed – just click on the ‘internet’ find the size shed you want and then look for the best price. Easy YES? Well not really as there is such array of garden buildings available from the ‘cheap and nasty’ right up to ones which would feel at home at Hampton Court Palace. So you need to do your homework to ensure you buy the right one for YOUR needs.

1st Choice Leisure Buildings – ONLY Sell Sheds Made to Very High Standards

Buy From An Established Business

By choosing to buy from an established business you can be sure that they have a great deal of expertise in the garden buildings industry. Also, they have become established by selling the right buildings at the right price and, most importantly, have been listening to their customers. By choosing a business which actually has a fixed ‘brick and mortar’ address’ you can be sure there is somewhere to contact them if you need to.

With businesses ONLY on the ‘web’ they can be ‘here and gone tomorrow’ (as they say in Winds in the Willows). With a business with a fixed address, you will also find you can ACTUALLY talk to someone in the flesh if you choose (as it used to be in the olden days) and not rely on emails (as good as they are) which most web firms expect you to do. Just by typing in ‘sheds to buy near me’ or ‘heavy duty garden sheds to buy near me’ or ‘garden shed suppliers’ will find a local business.

1st Choice Leisure Buildings, a Family Business – was established in 1979. They also have a physical office AND Show sites.

Is There A Garden Shed Installation Service?

Garden buildings by their very nature are large and heavy so building them can be a challenge. This may be fine for some people who like a challenge but a company offering sheds delivered and installed service will always be a better option. Not only does it save you a lot of hassle you can be sure it has been assembled correctly.

1st Choice Leisure Buildings offer a delivery & assembly service (and mostly free of charge) to save you time and effort. Not just dumped in your garden.   Read More Secrets

Consider The Following Before Buying A New Outdoor Building

STOP And Think BEFORE Buying Your New Shiny Garden Building
What you should ask and check BEFORE buying

1/  Are the buildings you want to buy on display ?
2/  How good is the timber cladding ?
3/  Are the floor and roof SOLID timber – is there any chipboard ?
4/  Can you choose your size and style of shed ?
5/  Are the sheds delivered and installed FREE and delivered FREE ?
6/  How thick is the framework ?
7/  How tall are the buildings, are you a midget ?
8/  What conditions are attached to the guarantee ?
9/  Is the shed made in the UK and is it stockpiled ?

The Answer is YES!! Click For Buying Advice from 1st Choice Leisure Buildings

Viewing and Display Sites

Questions often asked on Google is are there any ‘garden sheds near me for sale ‘ or ‘shed companies near me’. With almost 80 buildings on show seven days a week including timber, steel, concrete and plastic we positively encourage you to come and inspect the quality of our buildings for yourself by visiting our extensive display centre. Located between Woking and Guildford, in Surrey, we display a selection of products from all of our main ranges. No hiding behind a computer screen with us. Other queries are there any ‘sheds to buy near me’ or ‘shed retailers near me’ so it is obvious actually seeing a garden storage building is very popular. We will make you feel very welcome.

Timber Cladding And What To Look For

With a large array of different timber cladding to choose from it’s important that you make the right choice to ensure the longest life for your new shed. Read About Quality of Timber Which Should Be Used

Your New Shed Roof Is Crucial To Its Life

How well designed the roof is on your new garden building is crucial to its life so you need to pay particular attention to the specifications. Do NOT be afraid to ask questions BEFORE buying. Afterwards is too late. Read About What you MUST Know about Timber Roofs

Your New Building Floor Needs To Be Strong

How well designed and how strong the floor is made is important to the comfort and longevity of your new garden building. Check it out to ensure it will meet your demands. Read About What you MUST know about Wooden Floors

Ensure The Roof Style Will Suit Your Needs

With a choice of roof styles on most garden buildings you need to ensure you understand the differences an the benefits of the different ones. Also which one do YOU like the look of? Read About Range of Styles and Sizes from 1st Choice Garden Buildings

Garden Shed Installation Service – What You Need To Know

Garden storage buildings and stores tend to be quite heavy and can be hard work to build. You may like the challenge of building a shed but, if not, why not select the option of fully assembled sheds delivered to your home. All you need is a solid level base and a chair to relax in whilst we take the strain with our free garden delivery and assembly service allowing our shed fitters to do the hard work – how good is that? Why not have your garden sheds built on site. Read About Delivery and Assembly Options

Important To Know About Windows And Glass

With the choice of windows and their construction as well as the type of material used in them it’s important to ensure you know what you are getting. Don’t risk being ‘short changed’ with a cheap option, check it out before buying your new timber store. Read About Glass and Windows

If You Are Not From Lilliput Then Be Wary About Your New Building

Over the years the human race has been getting taller and taller but no one bothered to tell some shed companies. They still make them for ‘vertically challenged’ people which might save a few pounds but is not so good for your head as you go in and out your new outdoor unit. Not from Lilliput ?? Then Read About Height and Doors

THOSE Wonderful Extra Long Guarantees Being Offered

Many garden buildings shout from the hills about their extra long guarantees and warranties on their range of products HOWEVER they are not all that they seem. With VERY strict conditions which must be adhered to ensure the guarantee can seem to be worthless. In fact, we are happy to match any of these guarantees with the same conditions but would not insult your intelligence by doing so. Read About What you MUST Know about Guarantees and Where your Building will be Made

Outdoor Buildings Over The Years

These buildings are a British institution and have been for many years. Even before the 2nd world war sheds in the garden were popular with the nation and many gardeners ‘dug for victory’ during that time. Since then they have played a large role in the hearts of the country and there are very few gardens which don’t have a garden storage hut of some sort. Whether it’s a small one for our modern day houses or a big garden workshop for the more affluent homes you will find these buildings are very well used.

You will find that houses built from the 1930s to the 1950s have substantial gardens so this is where the larger garden workshops are found. However, as we got into the late ’60s and through to the 90’s you will find that they have got a little smaller due to the smaller gardens. After the housing bubble burst in the 90’s you will find that new houses tend to have small gardens so only the smallest ones would fit the bill. Buildings and huts delivered and installed is now popular from companies such as ‘1st Choice Leisure Buildings’


What Is A Shed?

In essence storage sheds and garden buildings are normally single storey buildings and are used in the garden or, quite often, on allotments. The size of the building varies depending on the usage, the needs and, more importantly, the available space for them. In all instances, all these garden buildings in use play a useful role in the day to day life of the UK. The sheer versatility is helped by the many different designs which are available. So from very basic huts, in its simplest form, to high-end garden workshops suitable for multitasking within the family you will find these buildings will suit.

Essentially these garden rooms consist of an internal frame onto which cladding is secured which made the sheds waterproof to the elements. The roof would normally be either apex (gable or V’shaped) or pent (single or mono pitched) although some buildings, usually in the higher price bracket can sometimes have a hip roof like on a house. These are quite striking buildings but the price can put a lot of people off. The reason for the price is the complexity of manufacture.


What Materials are Garden Buildings Supplied In?

These buildings can come in a variety of materials such as wood, timber, metal, steel, plastic or concrete. Often the choice of materials used for these outdoor buildings tends to be personal preferences but different claddings have different pros and cons. Timber or wooden buildings for sale tend to be the most popular due to the natural feel they give to the homeowner. They feel very strong but one of the downsides of these types of buildings is that they need treating to maintain a long life. However, you will find that tanalised or pressure treated ones won’t require treating, normally for about 15 years so are very popular.

Metal or steel sheds are normally made from galvanised steel which would have a long guarantee against rusting so there is no treating of these sheds required. Beware of metal buildings which are only ‘electro-plated’ rather than ‘hot dipped galvanised’ as this treatment won’t last as long. Plastic sheds won’t rust so are a viable proposition for the owner who does not want any maintenance issues. However, these type of units can look a little bland but do serve their purpose in the garden very well.

Concrete sheds are the ‘bruisers’ of the shed world. Being made from solid concrete these don’t need any maintenance to speak off as they will brush aside easily everything that the weather throws at it. One of the downsides of these concrete large prefab sheds is the limitation in sizes available and, to some people, they can seem a little utilitarian. Other than that these garden buildings for sale are a preferred choice for some garden owners.


1st Choice for Wooden Buildings, garden huts, Workshops, Timber Outdoor Storage Sheds

How Qualified Are We To Offer This Advice?

We, being a family business, have been involved in the manufacture of quality garden buildings for sale since 1979 when Robin started his first production unit. Craig, Robin’s son, joined in 1990 and trained at Guildford College in joinery. And for over 20 years we ran one of the largest UK shed companies in the south of England and made the conscious decision to only deal with quality materials which we knew would last the test of time. This ethos probably comes from our upbringing. Robin’s father and grandfather were Master Butchers in Cleethorpes, Lincolnshire and Quality and Customer Service was always the keyword behind their businesses.

Craig is a key member of the business and is helping 1st Choice to embrace the challenges of the 21st century. And with his two children, Daniel and Rebecca, the future looks very promising. So as you can see we are not just salespeople selling a range of products who know nothing of little about the products but have the history behind us to ensure that when you choose ‘1st Choice’ then you know your building actually will be ‘1st Choice.

Author is Robin Antill - expert in garden buildings Written By Robin - Expert in Garden Buildings For 39 Years.
Hi, I'm Robin Antill, founder of 1st Choice Leisure Buildings, and I use my expertise gained over 39 years in the garden buildings industry to understand that each customer is different. With my manufacturing, retailing and customer service experience my articles help people choose their ideal shed, garden workshop, summerhouse, log cabin or garden office needs to suit their requirement and that is key to satisfaction. And what do I do when I'm not writing? You may find me following Grimsby Town Football Club or riding roller coasters - so plenty of 'ups and downs' in my life.

Help With Planning Permission For Garden Buildings

If you need help about planning permission take a look at our page about planning requirements for garden storage sheds on our web site or go direct to the Planning Portal Official Site


General Help And Advice for Buildings in the Garden

If you need help and shed buying tips then take a look at our page with advice about buying on our web site or go direct to the Which Garden Shed UK Reviews

Should I Consider Buying An Insulated Garden Shed In The UK?

The garden shed is used traditionally as a storage place and sometimes as a workshop which limits its use, especially during the cold winter months. There is another option which means you are able to use it all year round. By investing a little more and upgrading to an insulated building you will be able to use these wonderful buildings all through the year. Your children could use it as a den and maybe play computer games in there or chill out with their friends and at the same time will be out from under your feet. Mum or Dad could use it as a ‘man cave’ or ‘she den’ for their own hobbies or pastimes and have some ‘me’ time. Or an insulated shed could be used as a home mini-factory as a business and if so, the cost would be tax deductible which is a ‘win-win’ for you.

Can I Insulate My Shed After It Has Been Delivered?

If you are a reasonable DIY’er then it’s relatively easy to insulate the shed yourself. You would just need to buy the insulation material, such as fibreglass, polystyrene or a purpose made material, as well as the sheets of plywood, hardboard (which can be veneered) or maybe T&G boards. You would cut the insulation to size and tack into place between the internal timbers. And after doing that you would cut the wall sheets to fit and screw or tack into place. The roof can be challenging as the insulation, due to the delights of gravity, tries to fall down. So you would need 2 or 3 people for this to make life easier. You would then finish it off with cover strips on the inside – job done. Challenging but quite rewarding.

Are There Any Other Options Available?

We are able to offer a full range of insulation options on all the Platinum sheds saving you the hassle. The walls and roof would be insulated and lined in a variety of ways and to suit your needs and this will mean your building would be available all year round. As standard, we would use a Kingspan type quality insulation which is a solid composition board and foil backed to help with thermal efficiency. Internal trims would be used to give a pleasing look inside and all with no hassle to you, except maybe in the wallet, but how much is this service worth to you?

Will These Garden Buildings Be Warm In The Winter?

Provided your new shed is insulated and lined either by you or us then it will be nearly as warm as inside your house. However, like your house, during the colder spells, you will require some heating inside to ensure a good working environment. We would recommend an electric radiator as the best option. Stay well away from any form of Calor type gas heaters as they produce a lot of damp as well as being a fire risk. The bonus is that the insulation will help to keep your shed cooler in summer as well and this was something I didn’t know in my early days of garden shed manufacturing (I started back in 1979 making sheds). I discovered this when going from an uninsulated building into an insulated one. The difference was amazing. So this insulation option is well worth considering.


How Much Will Insulating A Garden Shed Cost?

On the Platinum buildings pages there are links to the basic prices of the buildings but not the cost of insulation (at the moment). On some of the outbuildings, there is even an option to insulate the floor for even better protection from the elements. The question to ask is whether you can afford it and can you justify the cost. Well, if you would like to use your new garden building all year round then it’s worth working out what this all year round use is worth to you. To be able to utilise your shed all year can be a great asset and, maybe, a little piece of calm away from our mad ‘day to day’ world.

Can I Receive A Personal Quote?

We are, of course, very happy to supply you with a firm no obligation quote for your garden shed to meet your needs.
Just call us on (0333) 800 8880, use our contact form or visit our display sites near Woking and Farnham.

It’s always worth taking a look when buying a new shed for your garden. Come and visit either of our showrooms and see how good these buildings are

Guildford Surrey, Display Site

Please visit our show room within the Sutton Green Garden Centre conveniently situated directly off the A320 Woking to Guildford Road where you will a large range of garden buildings, including log cabins, garden workshops, summer houses, concrete garages and garden sheds.

The site is open and manned 7 days a week for viewing as well as obtaining free advice and ordering your delightful new building.



Farnham Surrey, Display Site

Please visit our show room within the superb Squires Badshot Lea garden centre, close to the Shepherd and Flock roundabout on the A31 Farnham to Guildford Road where you will a large range of garden buildings, including log cabins, garden workshops, summer houses, concrete garages and garden sheds.

The site will be open 7 days a week for viewing and will be manned most days in the week including weekends.



Now Fully Open With Nearly 30 Different Buildings On Display To View

Nuclear Powered Garden Shed

Gardens sheds are really practical additions to any garden and there is no reason why they can’t be used for many different and creative uses. Over many years summerhouses have been increasing in popularity but a basic ‘bread and butter’ shed can be just as versatile. This is because not only can they store the garden tools and furniture away they can be use as places of inspiration and creativity.

Among the many people who have been inspired in sheds and to be creative was David Charles Hahn, a young man who was 17 at the time. However, he took this to the extreme by trying to build a home made breeder nuclear reactor in his backyard retreat. He became known as the ‘Radioactive Boy Scout’ for his pursuits in his shed which remained unpublished until a Harpers article written by journalist Ken Silverstein in 1998. Hahn also was also behind the Silverstein’s book called ‘The Radioactive Boy Scout’ about Hahn and his infamous shed.

Hahn who was a boy scout in the Boy Scout’s of America, in Commerce Township, Michigan, and conducted his experiments in the garden shed at his mother’s home. This was a quiet place where he could work away from any disturbances and in peace. Whilst he was not successful, which is not surprising as Iran have all their scientists working on a nuclear reactor at the moment, his work in the garden shed attracted the attention of the local police who discovered radioactive materials in the boot of his car. As you can appreciate he was not too popular with his aims. About 10 months later the garden shed and his mother’s home and property was cleaned by the Superfund Cleanup site to remove all radioactive materials. However, Hahn had earned the right to be Eagle Scout rank in the Boy Scouts of America prior to the discovery of his experiments. I don’t think there is a badge for creating a Nuclear Reactor, but I understand there is one for Atomic Energy, which is a far cry from what was available to me in the Scouts in the 1960’s and I know Lord Baden Powell said that scouts should be creative but I don’t think he meant to go as far as this.

A little less controversial use of a wooden shed is by Damien Hirst who uses his down in Devon for his painting. He said that with practice you can make great paintings and the perfect place for him is his garden shed. It would appear that the solitude and peace and quiet of the ‘man cave’ is the reason behind this creativity. Maybe the mere fact that a garden shed is often used for making things can create inspiration. Either way these buildings are well loved members of the garden community.

Many authors have used their garden sheds to write some of their best work and this includes Roald Dahl who used his shed to write his very popular children’s stories. His family were very keen to preserve this building for the museum and they have raised an appeal so it can be added to their collection. In history there are many more examples where these buildings are used creatively.

So if you are asking the question where can I get sheds near me or garden sheds in the Uk then 1st Choice Leisure Buildings is the place to go. Established in 1979 and have a great track record and superb range of buildings to choose from.

Always View Buildings for Sale Before Buying

The ‘web’ is a wonderful thing but even with the flashiest of web pages and glossy brochure you can never get a REAL feel for what you are buying. For many items, this is not a problem but with YOUR new garden shed or building it’s important to know that what you getting will meet your expectations. By actually viewing your proposed building you can be sure of the quality and how well constructed it is, you can see how tall it is so you won’t bang your head and are the doors and windows made from stern stuff.

This will help you to distinguish from the ‘cheap and nasty’ sheds made ‘down to a price’ and which are readily available on the web and the well made, well-constructed buildings which are designed to last a long time. The purely ‘online’ retailers claim that it’s good to buy online as you can save money BUT how can you know that you won’t end up with that ‘cheap and nasty’ building. By viewing beforehand you can save yourself from the potential heartache and stress. Always remember that the cheapest price is not always the best.

Visit One of the 1st Choice Leisure Buildings Showrooms – and see garden buildings display near Guildford and Farnham in Surrey. You will be glad you did.

Click Here For A Walk Through Of Our Display Site

Do You Want a ‘Run of the Mill’ Shed or Are Your Special?

There are certain advantages for standard sizes or designs as these can help keep the costs down a little however wouldn’t it be good to buy a building to suit YOU and YOUR garden. By doing this you can utilise your garden building to have the best use and to fit in the space that you have got. By talking to a company which can make a garden building in the size and design for you then this is what can happen. It may be a little dearer but this small extra cost can be the difference between ‘making do’ or being 100% satisfied. Surely that’s got to be worth it?

Any Size From 1st Choice Leisure Buildings – We can make nearly all their garden buildings in ‘more or less’ and size or design to suit you.

Ensure the Timber Used is the Best for YOUR New Building

Again a great deal of money can be saved by selecting cheaper timber such as whitewood which, to a certain degree, is OK’ish for a basic garden shed. It’s far better to insist on a redwood deal timber building as this grows far slower than whitewood so the grain is more tightly compacted ensuring a longer life. A little more expensive but a better long term prospect. Whitewood because it grows quickly can be subject to lots of little knots dropping out.

Redwood Timber From 1st Choice Garden Buildings – Most of our buildings are made predominately with redwood deal timber for longer life.

Beware of Chipboard, Sterling Board, OSB Boards Being Used

You will find that most of the ‘cheap sheds’ will use chipboard, OSB board or Sterling board on the floors and roofs to save money. In an ideal scenario this would be fine but as soon as any damp gets into these boards (and being outside is nearly unavoidable) they will start to swell and then disintegrate meaning the end of your shiny new shed. These shed companies know this so they try to hide the fact by saying their floors and roofs are made from ‘Sheet Materials’. They avoid using the words ‘chipboard, OSB board etc’ as they know there could be problems in the near future.

Solid Timber From 1st Choice Leisure Buildings – They do NOT use chipboard, OSB board, Sterling board on any of their wooden sheds.

Are All Panels Fully Pre Made For You?

Surprisingly many of the cheap sheds, besides being made of chipboard etc, are delivered in pieces where you have to build some of the panels yourself. Ludicrous! If you are buying a cheap shed always double check what you are getting. Your new buildings are unlikely to be ready-made sheds leaving you with loads to do.

All our Buildings are delivered in complete sections (and mostly assembled free of charge) to save you time and effort. Not just dumped in your garden.

Where Can I find More Information?

Visit this page for more Garden Buildings Buying Advice You will be pleased that you did. Also visit 1st Choice’s UK display site and see for your self. Many garden sheds Surrey built on our show site for you to view.

Author is Robin Antill - expert in garden buildings Written By Robin - Expert in Garden Buildings For 39 Years.
Hi, I'm Robin Antill, founder of 1st Choice Leisure Buildings, and I use my expertise gained over 39 years in the garden buildings industry to understand that each customer is different. With my manufacturing, retailing and customer service experience my articles help people choose their ideal shed, garden workshop, summerhouse, log cabin or garden office needs to suit their requirement and that is key to satisfaction. And what do I do when I'm not writing? You may find me following Grimsby Town Football Club or riding roller coasters - so plenty of 'ups and downs' in my life.

If quality big, large, small & the best wooden sheds for sale are on your shopping list, then our range of buildings should meet your needs. Made to suit your needs in size and design so you don’t have to compromise. And we have two UK display sites, near to Farnham, Woking and Guildford in Surrey, so you can view examples for your self and see the quality, sizes and styles. Open seven days a week for your convenience at Guildford. Most garden sheds include free delivery & assembly. Take the opportunity to browse our range of buildings online & then come down to see us, a family business started in 1979.

Main Product Ranges

Farnham Show Site

1st Choice Leisure Buildings
Squires Garden Centre,
Bagshot Lea Road,
Badshot Lea,
Phone 01252 311085


Woking Show Site

1st Choice Leisure Buildings
Sutton Green Garden Centre,
Whitmoor Ln,
Sutton Green,
Phone 01483 237550


1st Choice Leisure Buildings For Log Cabins, Summer Houses, Garden Offices & Concrete Garages

Call us today on 0800 999 6995 email [email protected]