Canal Water Feature

"The team at Harrod Horticultural are the perfect partner for us in projects like this and we trust them completely to help deliver our vision"

James Basson, Scape Design, Monaco

One of Harrods areas of specialist expertise is water feature design and engineering – we understand the science of water behaviour; what pumps/valves to use, also and essentially, water chemistry – including filtration, chemical treatment and corrosive interaction.

Our ability to turn a concept into a fully realised, reliable, low maintenance feature is one of our key strengths. We were approached by James Basson of Scape Design with a vision for the St Remis de Provence Courtyard feature which was inspired by the region’s historic maze-like network of irrigation canals and surrounded by Achnatherum calamagrostis grass. It was conceptually important that the water appeared to enter the feature at a single point and flow from this point outwards into the network of ‘canals’ and drain via multiple outlets at the end of each branch. The two large pools within the system are filled by water flowing from the ‘canal’ troughs via weirs forming definite water falls; it was essential that these were reliably created and of course their power tuneable to give the desired effect.

Harrod Horticultural started with the outline concept of the water feature, as detailed in drawings provided by James Basson /Scape Design. These were turned into full 3D solid CAD models – essential for visualisation and communication to all involved including client, manufacturer, designer, installer and maintenance contractor. From these the hydraulic circuits were designed with consideration of flow rates, solutions were found to achieve the ‘flowing from one point’ brief and the reliable tuneable waterfalls into the two pools. Practical considerations such as maintenance / drain-down, ease of installation/ levelling, debris / leaf filtration and drain down, were included in the design process. All essential for our ‘right first time’ philosophy. A failure mode and effects analysis was carried out as a routine to identify any potential catastrophic failure modes and physical models were also built to test assumptions about water flow at the weirs and to gain client approval.

Once the design was finalised and agreed we quickly moved into the construction phase. The troughs were made from 8mm steel, laser cut, folded and then welded. Much skill is required to keep such large fabricated structures from bowing and distorting significantly during welding. The trough components were carefully loaded onto an articulated lorry and shipped to France for installation by contractors engaged by James Basson / Scape Design.

Harrod Horticultural were fantastic partners to work with on this project and we in effect handed the whole design over to their team of design engineers for them to use their manufacturing knowledge and experience to suggest improvements and any required amendments. Harrod kept us informed at every stage of the process – even sending us photos during manufacture to forward on to our client – and the whole project was delivered on time and on budget. The team at Harrod Horticultural are the perfect partner for us in projects like this and we trust them completely to help deliver our vision”

James Basson / Scape Design

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