Reimagining Rainwater at Hampton Court Palace

With water shortages a growing concern in Britain, ACO partnered with the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) and Tom Massey, garden designer featured in BBC Two’s Your Garden Made Perfect, to reimagine rainwater as a resource for positive use rather than simply being disposed of at this year’s RHS Garden Festival at Hampton Court Palace.

Concerns about water quantity and quality are often in the news. Summer 2023 has delivered a hosepipe ban in Kent and Sussex, while cars swim through flash floods in London. This is driven by the climate crisis, population growth, and with that, urban creep that seals rain-absorbing ground. However domestic practice lags behind concern: we put rainwater down the drain and throw drinking-quality water on the garden.

Images reproduced with permission from RHS Resilient Garden, Dorling Kindersley: © AVA CGI Ltd, 2023

Images reproduced with permission from RHS Resilient Garden, Dorling Kindersley: © AVA CGI Ltd, 2023

Supporting water conservation efforts, ACO was delighted to sponsor the RHS Resilient Garden at this year’s RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival. This show garden transforms an aesthetically and environmentally unimaginative domestic plot into a biodiverse garden resilient to climate change.
The garden was designed by Tom Massey and built by Landscape Associates. Domestic rainwater management is central to the RHS Resilient Garden, with ACO products featured in the show garden and on the adjoining ACO House & Garden Stand during the six-day show. Both the stand and garden together demonstrate the power of plants and products to channel, store, enjoy, slow and disperse rainwater on its journey from rooftop to ground level and below.
Reimagining Rainwater with ACO’s Solutions Rainwater lands first and is slowed down on its journey through green roofs of the house and garden office in the show garden. Planting and ACO RoofBloxx slow and disperse the rainwater while providing natural cooling and insulation. ACO Threshold Drains protect the house from flood and feed rainwater into the pond, to join water from roofs. The rainwater pond offers enjoyment for all, with ACO Wildlife products encouraging animals to stay.

Rainwater is kept out of the drain to combat sewage overflows that plague our news. ACO GravelGuard has replaced paving, allowing rain to pass through and stabilises the surface for access. Water from the rainwater pond flows on into a soakaway, constructed using ACO StormBrixx, and is dispersed into the ground.

Peter Ridgway, Brand Development Director for ACO Technologies plc, said: “The Garden Festival is always a pleasure to attend and this year we were thrilled to work with the RHS and Tom Massey to expand the conversation on rainwater in our homes. We all know water quality and quantity is of increasing national importance, but struggle to achieve solutions that benefit both our own homes and the wider ecosystem.
“We encourage everyone with an interest in gardening and nature to explore how stand and garden use the power of ACO products and plants to reimagine rainwater in our gardens.”
For more about how ACO is Reimagining Rainwater, please visit
For more about ACO House & Garden, please visit

For the latest industry news visit

Get all of the big headlines, pictures, opinions and videos on stories that matter to you.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram for fun, fresh and engaging content.

You can also find us on Facebook for more of your must-see news, features, videos and pictures from Landscaping Matters