Sash window styles through history

georgian sash style

Here at Wessex we offer repair and replacement services for one of the most defining features of British architecture: the timber sash window. If you’ve ever wondered more about how this iconic window style came into being you’re in luck. Here’s a quick guide to sash window styles throughout history. How they developed For a long time it was presumed that sash windows originated in Holland during the early 16th century, however recent research undertaken by University of Newcastle indicates that they could have been invented in the UK much earlier. The development of sash windows reflects the development of better glass-making techniques, and the search for a window that … Continue reading

How energy efficient are timber sash windows?

Energy efficient sash windows

How energy efficient timber sash windows are depends a lot on a number of factors, such as age and quality. How old the windows are and when they were constructed, will play an important part in determining their energy efficiency. The development of energy-saving technology over the last few decades has meant that modern timber sash windows are far superior in terms of thermal retention and energy efficiency, compared to older units constructed at the beginning of the 20th century. Single glazed timber sash window In a study of the energy efficiency of a timber, single glazed window, Paul Walker of Glasgow Caledonian University found that the U value of … Continue reading

Maintaining ‘homes fit for heroes’, 100 years after the First World War

Building homes fit for heroes: still from a British Pathé film

This month has seen the centenary of the start of the First World War: the ‘war to end all wars’. When many people think of this monumental conflict, the first thing that comes to mind is not necessarily homes and timber sash windows, but a drive to create better quality housing for returning soldiers was actually a direct result of the war. Housing for the majority of people and families in the United Kingdom in this period was in particularly dire state. Most people, particularly the working classes, had no choice but to live in cramped, poorly designed Victorian slums that were ill lit, ill ventilated, and that fostered disease. … Continue reading

New arched sash windows for Bristol University property

Wessex Restoration renovation of University of Bristol property 15-19 Tyndalls Park Road, Clifton, with new facade of white timber sash windows

In 2013, we were contracted to renovate 30-34 Tyndalls Park Road, by upgrading the timber sash windows and supplying timber fire-rated doors. As part of the University of Bristol’s extensive renovations of period housing, offices and classrooms, Wessex Restoration has been invited back to undertake the restoration of 15-19 Tyndalls Park Road. Project details Project: 15-19 Tyndalls Park Road, Clifton, Bristol Client: University of Bristol Main contractor: Beard Construction Ltd Products installed: Arched sliding sash windows with horns and traditional locks, four-panel wooden fire-rated doors and period timber features, including skirting boards, dado rails and picture rails. Project completed: Summer 2014 15-19 Tyndalls Park Road Profile The project consists of … Continue reading

Why you shouldn’t replace timber windows with uPVC

Energy efficient sash windows

When looking to upgrade your old timber windows, it’s tempting to opt for the cheapness and convenience of uPVC. Some double glazing salesmen use horror stories of rotting wood and cold draughts of single glazed timber windows to persuade people to switch to uPVC. But these are just that – horror stories. Scare tactics to sell. Whilst it’s true your original timber windows might not be the best performing, the reality is today’s modern timber systems are designed to offer better levels of thermal efficiency, security and, above all, the classic charm that draws people to houses with timber windows in the first place. People choose uPVC for a number … Continue reading

Guide to replacing sash windows in conservation areas

Old flaky timber window with Georgian bars

If your house is listed or in a conservation area, there are restrictions to what structural and aesthetic changes you can make, including alterations to windows. Sash windows are a common feature of many historical and listed buildings dating from the Georgian and Victorian eras. Most of these windows have existed for well over a century, but after a while some begin to look sad and shabby and in need of some love and attention. But do you need permission to replace your sash windows, or is it possible to repair them? Planning permission for replacing windows in conservation areas According to the English Heritage, windows and doors “make a … Continue reading

Broken sash windows – repair or replace?

Restored sash windows in a period property

Sash windows are one of the most beautiful features of period properties. When they are properly manufactured and maintained, they can last for over a hundred years; however, timber requires a lot of maintenance. Wooden windows need sanding, painting and varnishing around every 3-5 years, which is why it’s easy for them to fall into disrepair. If your wooden windows look like they have seen better days, read on to see if they can be repaired or whether you will need to consider a replacement window. Damaged timber frames Timber frames exposed to the elements can become tired and worn down over the years, leading to rotting or warped frames. … Continue reading