The Influence Of The Great Fire Of London On Sash Window Development

26/10/2016 - 3 minutes read

The Influence of The Great Fire of London on sash window development

The Great Fire of London would have been devastating to London dwellers at the time, watching their beloved city erupt in flames.

However, as with many of these horrendous events, it often leads to change that will benefit future generations.


One of these was the development of box sash windows. The fire occurred in 1666, sweeping across large swathes of London, destroying hundreds of homes and buildings.

Whilst words like conservation and retrofit would not have been a byword back then, thoughts would inevitably have been on future preservation and safety.

The role of the Great Fire

In this respect, the Great Fire played a pivotal role.

Whilst heritage double glazing would not have come into force at this time, there were some building regulations in place at the time to follow. These were subsequently updated to prevent any future fire of this type.

The new regulations gave guidelines recommending that the wooden window frames should be recessed behind the outer stone or brick exterior.

New regulations

This led directly to the development of Georgian architecture. As we know, sash windows were then created and represented the most up to date advanced feature of the time.

The windows remained popular for many decades after The Great Fire and are still hugely in demand today. Some of the early Georgian building built at that time are still in existence and have at least parts of their original sash windows in place.

Salvage projects

The most important strategy now is to save as much as possible of that construction, through sash window renovation projects. Even if the window needs to be destroyed to be updated, often a small corner can be salvaged to keep the mark of history intact.

If you are lucky enough to live in an older property with sash windows, think carefully about preservation and avoid destruction when considering renovation. Your windows can still be updated to keep you warm, and block out noise and draught.

Envirosash provides high quality sash window restoration services to London and the South of England. We restore, draught proof and install slim double glazing into existing period windows and doors. We also manufacture bespoke made to measure windows and doors, and all our joinery is crafted from Accoya wood.

Contact Alex on 0800 292 2309 today to arrange a free survey and quote with no obligation.