|People all over the world are turning to backyard sheds as more than just a storage space for garden equipment. Whether they want a backyard bar, an art or yoga studio, or just a comfortable place to hang out, homeowners everywhere are turning to the humble shed as the solution. In the United Kingdom, Channel 4 television hosts an annual competition for Shed of the Year.
Homeowners have been competing in Shed of the Year since its inception in 2007, and winners receive a wooden plaque, £100 worth of products for the shed, a £1000 cash prize, and a giant crown to be placed on the shed. There are eight categories that sheds can be entered into, including pub, cabin, and eco.
Twelve finalists have been chosen for the competition, and the winner will be selected by public vote. Notable finalists include a distillery located inside a former hen house, complete with house sheep, a “Starlight Diner,” an observatory with telescopes, and a tree house. A micro shed just four by two feet was entered by Colin Edmundson, while Terry Meredith’s tree shed seats ten and includes a barbecue from its 14-foot high perch. The Starlight Diner features a vintage juke box and comfy booth seating.
Citizens who wish to vote for their favorite sheds may do so before noon on May 29, 2015. Later in the summer, the category winners will be showcased on television as they compete for overall winner. Over 2,500 homeowners initially entered the competition, so the judges had quite the task of paring the numbers down, first to 32, then to 12.
Homeowners interested in building their own sheds should consult their local zoning boards to learn about required permits and building restrictions. Sheds with concrete foundations may require a permit to install, while some temporary structures can be added to yards with little fuss.