Holbein House, London

Project: Holbein House, London

New Bespoke timber sash windows, designed and produced by Lomax + Wood (previously Ambass-A-Door), have been installed in the extensive refurbishment of Holbein House, Chelsea SW1.  The £3.3m project was carried out by specialist contractor United House for Guinness South, a member of The Guinness Partnership, providers of good quality affordable homes and services in London, the South East and South Midlands.

The scope of the work included 600 replacement double glazed timber sash windows from Lomax + Wood’s made-to-order Kensington & Chelsea collection, as well as external repairs to roofs and ventilation systems.  The brickwork was restored where possible, or replaced, and fully cleaned to bring the exterior facades in keeping with adjacent buildings.

Lomax + Wood’s traditionally designed high performance box sash windows, operated with weights, heavy duty brass ball bearing pulley wheels and pre-stretched nylon cords that won’t break or stretch, were specially made to replicate the originals and to meet local planning requirements.

“The contractors brief was to refurbish these Chelsea mansion blocks to look as they did when first built in the late 19th Century,” says David Lomax, technical director, Lomax + Wood. “To satisfy the planners and conservation officers we adapted our standard section windows to be within 2- 3 mm of the original sizes giving the visual appearance of the historical single glazed windows that were fitted over 100 years ago.”  The windows were fitted with acoustic glazing which not only improves the comfort of residents living adjacent to the busy road but also increases thermal efficiency.

Access to Holbein House was a great challenge as the estate is enclosed with no vehicular access.  This meant that all deliveries of materials and equipment – from scaffold to bricks and windows – became a manual task.  Each of the solid timber sash windows was carried onto site and man-handled by up to four operatives via the communal stair cases of these six-storey blocks.

The company excels in providing a full suite of beautifully designed products of exceptional quality which are ideal for both new build and heritage refurbishment projects. Lomax + Wood use only sustainably sourced European pine which grows rapidly. This comprehensive range includes single and double glazed sash windows, stormproof and flush casements, external French doors, bi-fold and custom-made entrance doors.  Products are delivered direct to site, factory-finished with three coats of high quality, durable microporous paint or stain, which is available in a choice of fashionable heritage colours.  An optional dual-colour facility is also available.

Unlike mass produced timber windows and doors, Lomax + Wood do not use Swedish grooves on joints.  These grooves were introduced for mass production and are considered unsightly, breaking up traditional sightlines.  The company takes great care in designing their made-to-order joinery to ensure tradition is not compromised to meet industrial production techniques.

Lomax + Wood is a member of FENSA and the British Woodworking Federation and is proud of its 30-year manufacturing history.  The company’s HQ is based in Cromwell Place, South Kensington with offices and showrooms in Ingatestone, Essex.