Isle of Wight-based sheddie Nicholas Pointing, a recently retired navy veteran from Sandown, entered the contest with his shed – called Chitty Inventors Workshop – in the Workshop/Studio category. Nicholas built the shed from scratch when he needed space to build a replica of the film’s iconic car for his wife.
“My wife Carolyn is a Chitty Chitty Bang Bang fan who asked me if I could build her the car. I spent four years building a replica Chitty Chitty Bang Bang from a 50-year-old Land Rover.
“Initially, we only had a workshop made out of pallets but, as time went by, we built the Chitty workshop.”
Nicholas – the second Islander to reach the finals of the competition – says the space has taken on “a personality all of its own” to become a real inventor’s workshop, with the whole family getting involved.
“The grandchildren all take part in painting, making and inventing!
“It’s not only a Chitty garage, but it’s also an eclectic mix of nostalgia, film memorabilia and a practical workshop.
“My favorite time is sitting on a bar stool at my work bench, garage doors wide open with the sun streaming in, a cup of tea in hand, thinking about the next possibilities!”
The competition will now see the 22 finalists go shed-to-shed across the nine categories. A winner from each will be decided by public vote, before a panel of shed experts decide which overall winner will be awarded the giant golden crown. Alongside eternal shed glory, the overall winner will also receive £1,000, a plaque and £100 of Cuprinol products.
Head judge and founder of the competition Andrew Wilcox said:
“The past year has been an incredibly challenging time for all of us and, now more than ever, we’re aware of how important the humble shed can be.
“Sheds are not just unloved, brown structures at the bottom of the garden that house tools and household junk, they are vital spaces where you can go to relax, work on a project or burn off some steam.
“The high-calibre entries this year really prove why we set up the competition in the first place – to highlight the valuable role sheds can play in our lives, in our businesses and the positive impact they have on our wellbeing.”
Kirsty Woodbine, Marketing Manager for Cuprinol, added:
“We are overwhelmed by the amount and quality of entries we’ve received this year.
“The sheds were of such a high standard that narrowing them down to just 22 was an incredibly difficult task.
“The level of innovation, imagination and creativity we’ve seen has been incredible, as has the number of people using their sheds as dedicated spaces to help others in their community. This year’s contest has been truly life affirming.”
Last year’s shed-building superstar Daniel Holloway walked away with the coveted title of Cuprinol Shed of the Year 2020 after wowing judges with his nature-inspired refuge Bedouin Tree-Shed, built around two tree trunks in his back garden.
Ashley Bates took home the competition’s first ever Special Commendation in 2020, after setting up The Shed School to help educate children while lockdown closed classrooms.
Public voting for the 15th annual competition opens on Wednesday, 2nd June, and will close on Monday 12th July. Check out all of the 22 finalists and cast your vote here.