The future of tradition

Clare Higgins, product manager at Rehau, looks at how the appeal of heritage windows has stood the test of time and how the industry develops ways of balancing the aesthetics of a traditional wooden sash and the low maintenance and efficiency of PVCU.

Today, the Rehau Heritage sash window profile remains a popular product, often in areas of conservation or just due to its aesthetically pleasing appearance. It is also a product that has been on an interesting development journey.

Rehau Heritage sash window profiles have all the sightlines of a traditional timber box sash window – in 42mm, 52mm and 62mm sashes – with a deep heritage bottom rail. The exteriors of the windows have putty-line aesthetics to enhance the authentic design, and the windows are available in a range of finishes.

The system was developed in consultation with conservation bodies to smooth the planning process and offer the most authentic design and styling on the market. This way, period window features can be preserved and customers can have all the benefits of PVCU. While not without reservations, today the Heritage system has been approved by officers across the country in a variety of conservation areas and is even beginning to have success in listed buildings, due to its ability to mirror a traditional timber sash.

There have also been developments in recent years, including the Timberweld technology. This method provides the aesthetic of a mechanically jointed timber product within a fully welded PVC product. This fabrication approach, although more time consuming, leaves an aesthetically pleasing finish akin to traditional timber windows.

In recent years, the Heritage profile has also begun to gain international appeal and is now exported to markets across the world including India, Australia, South Africa, Turkey, Greece and more. There has also been an increasing interest expressed by customers in Eastern European markets and even in Russia and Ukraine.

In order to cater to varied preferences across regions, the window system is available in standard in Simply White, Soft Cream, Rich Rosewood or warm Golden Oak. There is also a choice of 25 special laminate options available, including the increasingly popular Pearl Grey.

The international appeal of heritage windows was evident at the 2018 Fensterbau Frontale event held in Nuremberg in March 2018. As one of the biggest trade shows in windows, doors and facades, Fensterbau brought together more than 110,000 visitors from 42 countries.

On display at the Rehau stand was the popular Heritage Vertical Slider presented in pearl grey with the newly introduced Timberweld technology. Its traditional timber looking finish sparked great interest among many international visitors and was a key highlight at the event.

Rehau’s Heritage windows system has embraced the phenomenon of globalisation that is bringing us closer together. The window system is superbly engineered with exceptional quality and is designed to add real style to your home, guaranteeing maximum efficiency and performance for your investment.