Back in Victorian times Conservatories and Orangeries tended to be glass structures built onto large country houses designed so that wealthy travellers could admire and protect tender plants which they had brought back from their overseas trips.
The exotic nature of plants such as orchids was reflected in the increasingly ornate nature of the glass structures – and this resulted in competition for the most diversified plant collection and also the most elaborate conservatories and orangeries. As citrus trees such as orange and lemon were included in the vast collections, the less than humble conservatories became more commonly known as Orangeries.
Over the years, building techniques improved and glass became more affordable through mass production, consequently conservatories and orangeries became more popular. Their use gradually changed from glorified greenhouses to providing genuine habitable accommodation with views of the surrounding gardens, whilst offering protection from the British weather.
Conservatories and Orangeries became more practical and functional living spaces and are now increasingly popular additions to a wide range of housing styles across the United Kingdom.