Posted: 02/06/2014 at 10:40
If you can lift the flagstones and set them aside you could maybe reuse them to make a hard seating area for a table and chairs and maybe a BBQ. You could get height by building a trellis panel or a pergola or an arch. Once they're cleared, fork over the remaining soil and add as much well rotted manure or garden compost as you can then rake it more or less level.
There are loads of plants that will do well in a sheltered, shady spot - hostas, foxgloves, ferns, Japanese anémones, astilboides, lots of clematis for scrambling up treliis and pergolas and arches, pulmonarias, hellébores, hardy geraniums, primulas, heucheras, tiarellas.
If you use variegated foliage in hostas and pale coloured flowers the area will shine out, especially on grey days and dusk and make a beautiful addition to your garden.