Repton School Case Study
Heritage Sealed Units were needed to update this historic Private School near Derby without ruining it’s very distinctive appearance. This very sensitive project needed windows that were both traditional in appearance but modern in performance. Gowercroft’s Heritage window range was chosen and the ideal solution.
Three of the school’s 90 or so properties were in need of renovation, and it was decided that the Gowercroft range of heritage windows and doors offered the required modern day performance whilst maintaining the traditional aesthetics of the buildings.
One of the crucial aspects of fitting new windows to such ancient buildings is the window profile. Some of the school’s buildings were erected hundreds of years before double glazing became commonplace. It would be vulgar to install modern day uPVC double glazing in such auspicious surroundings. However, even standard timber windows, even sash windows that have a more traditional look, have double glazing that is patently too thick to fit in with the style of the surroundings.
Single glazed units are the preferred products for heritage projects. Unfortunately ‘old school’ looks come with ‘old school’ performance in terms of heat retention and soundproofing. However, with the use of Pilkington SpaciaTM heritage sealed units these problems can be overcome.
These double glazed units are considerably narrower than other windows – up to 15mm thinner. This eliminates the ‘double shadow’ effect that prevents standard units from being used in heritage projects. The vacuum gap between the panes of glass makes them highly efficient whilst maintaining, as close as is currently possible, the appearance of an ‘original’ single glazed window.
We have a detailed post on the Challenges of Replacing Heritage Windows on our blog.
Repton School in Derbyshire dates back to 1557 and is based on the grounds and buildings of 12th Century Augustinian Priory. The original church was destroyed in 1553 though some fragments remain, most of the structure is from much later. All the additions to the site are in keeping with the original buildings, even modern buildings such as the Science Priory added in 2013. The whole effect of the school is both traditional and grand, and utterly charming. Signs of Roman occupation were uncovered during recent archeological digs.
Famous students include legendary olympian Harold Abrahams, writers Christopher Isherwood, Edward Upton and Roald Dahl. Latterly Top Gear[link] and The Grand Tour producer Andy Wilman and presenter Jeremy Clarkson attended the school.
You can read more about Repton School on Wikipedia.
There are both classrooms and residential buildings for the staff and pupils on the Repton School site, and it was one of the classrooms and two of the staff dwellings that we were asked to supply windows for. Scheduling the work was challenging as we had to work around the school calendar – we didn’t want to disturb either staff or pupils during the renovation.
Products used were the Richmond and Winston heritage window range. These products were developed by Gowercroft during the renovation of a former property of Winston Churchill and have been refined over the years to be a ‘go-to’ solution for heritage projects and have won several industry awards.
You can find more information on the Gowercroft Heritage Window Range. If you would like more information on the specific products used in this case study:
Barry Law, Estates Bursar