Paul Cameron the founder of Treehouse Life stumbled on his great idea in 2002 when he was looking for a treehouse for his sons. Being uninspired, inspired him.
After all, a treehouse should be a place that fires the imagination. Paul realised that it was also more than child’s play. A treehouse could also be a retreat, a second home, a luxury cabin. And so much more.
Soon, it became apparent that this was not just a British phenomena, but an idea with global appeal. From English country garden to uber cool Ibiza beachfronts.
In the past 5 years, Paul and his team has created, built and delivered more than 100 treehouses and rope bridges throughout the UK and all around the world.
Ben Raby, Head of the South East at Department for International Trade, says: "For many small firms, entering a new market is challenging, but Treehouse Life has a reputation for high-quality, British made products. This, paired with an accessible website configured for international customers, has allowed the business to enjoy real success in Qatar."
What is the most unusual treehouse structure you have ever designed?
Somewhere in-between a treehouse specifically for a pool table in Yorkshire to a table tennis treehouse in Ibiza, a hill top treehouse with a hot-tub and shower to suspended treehouse platforms 14m high in the tree-canopy. We branched into Igloo building a few weeks ago in the snow and needed to gift-wrap a Treehouse present from Santa just before Christmas - what a beautiful present that was!
The idea of a treehouse also brings the family together. Paul says the children get involved from the very start with the design process, and then the fathers love helping out with the build part of it. The best part is that generally you don't even need planning permission, depending on where you live, the treehouse you are going for and as long as you don't go over four metres.
“Millie loves her treehouse - she's out there every day and she's in fantasy land, dressing up as a princess while her 'boyfriend' dresses up as a man in armour and has tea parties, with her. That's what it's all about," says Cameron.
Treehouse options have proliferated to such an extent that companies such as Cameron's now present clients with computer-drawn, three-dimensional models of potential designs, wrapped around their chosen trees, long before a saw is taken to wood. Increasingly the brief is to include all the trappings of conventional houses.
"Because we live on a slope, there was little scope before for our children to play games outside before,but now, every day when the kids come home, we go outside and play battles across the fortress. You have to be a big kid to think of something like this, but who doesn't have an inner child just waiting to be released? "
At Treehouse Life we believe that a tree house can, and should, be so much more than just a country cottage or a log cabin perched up in a tree. So in all of our designs we like to look beyond the traditional, the obvious or even the expected, and offer something that's a little bit different.