How to Create a Sand Pit

Sand pits can be a great way of giving the kids their own area in the garden to have endless amounts of fun in (and keep them from touching things in the garden they shouldn’t!) Using our high quality wooden sleepers, you can have the flexibility to cut these down to make what ever size sand pit you’d like. Using our materials alone means this little project will cost less than £100 to create – making it a bargain for a play area that will last up to 10 years! This example will make a rectangular sand pit measuring 1.4m x 1.2m.

What you’ll need:

Wooden sleepers x 2 – from £22.80 each (inc. VAT)

Play sand x 10 bags – £3.99 per 20kg bag (inc. VAT)

Weed fabric x 1 – £7.99 (inc. VAT)

Hand saw – available in store

Spade – available in store

Wood preserver (optional)

Sprit Level


Heavy duty scissors

Sand paper

Tape Measure

Paint brush

8 x exterior coach screws

10mm Flat Wood Drill Bit

32mm Flat Wood Drill Bit

17mm Socket and Rachet

Step 1:
Choose where to place your sand pit

Your sand pit will be best placed somewhere that offers shade and sunshine at different parts of the day, this will mean your children aren’t exposed to sun rays for too long and your sand will keep dry too. A location that is fairly flat is an advantage as well (check using your spirit level) but this can always be altered later on.

Step 2:
How to build your sand pit

These pine sleepers measure 2.4m x 20cm x 10cm and are easily hand sawn to your chosen size. Be sure to measure these equally with a tape measure and mark where they need cutting down all the way around with a pencil. Once you’ve done this, use the hand saw to cut through and ensure the lines are straight. For this example, you will cut each wooden sleeper exactly in half to measure 1.2m. Once the wood has been sawn, paint on some wood preserver to the cut ends to add protection against harsh weathers.

Step 3:
Place down your sleepers to see where looks best

Place your sleepers down on the desired area of your garden. You can use the example diagram below to create a sand pit with a 1.2m area with a slightly shorter width, this tends to look neater as opposed to a perfect 1.2m square outside. Once you’re happy with how they are, mark this by lightly digging a spade around the outside perimeter.

Step 4:
Dig out your sand pit area

You can now remove the sleepers and begin to dig at least 3cm into the ground of the entire area of these markings. Make sure you remove any roots or stones, and use your spirit level to ensure the ground is level.

Step 5:
Prevent those pesky weeds!

Now you’ll need your weed fabric. Use the dug-out area to measure how much fabric you’ll need to cover the entire area. This may mean using two layers to ensure all under soil is covered. Our Weed Fabric roll measures 14m x 1m. This will allow water to drain out from the rain and will also prevent weeds from growing through. Cut the fabric with heavy duty scissors and as an extra option, you can pin down this fabric using nails, although the sleepers should hold this down.

Step 6:
Secure the sleepers

The sleepers can now finally be put back into place. Drill 2 pilot holes into the end of the outer sleeper, into the shorter sleeper. You’ll do this by using the 10mm flat wood drill bit. Then use your 32mm drill bit to drill approximately 1cm into the wood on top of these 2 newly drilled holes. This will allow the screw heads to be recessed. Place the 15cm exterior coach screws into the holes and tighten with the 17mm socket and rachet. Do this process for all 4 corners.

Step 7:
Smooth down the edges

Ensure you use sand paper to sand down the corner edges of the sleepers as well as any visible areas to create a smooth finish. You don’t need to do this if you have chosen to paint your sleepers beforehand.

Step 8:

It’s now time to empty out your play sand into your sand pit. Be sure to put enough sand down so it is around half full, you don’t need to fill it all the way to the top. We recommended using 200kg of our play sand (10 bags). To protect your sand from any unwanted visitors, place down some tarpaulin with some stones to keep this secure. You’re now ready to add some toys and let them play!

Got some left over wooden sleepers? Why not create a flower bed using the same method - just soil instead!