Alongside Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament, there can be hardly be a more prestigious venue than The Royal Academy of Arts in London’s Piccadilly. Founded in 1768 by Sir Joshua Reynolds, it has been the cultural home to so many world famous British artists including Gainsborough, Turner and Constable. Still as relevant today in the world of contemporary art and architecture, its list of up to 80 academicians currently include David Hockney, Grayson Perry, Tracey Emin, and Antony Gormley.
The Royal Academy is based in Piccadilly’s Burlington House and, as part of its 250th anniversary celebrations, the RA decided to link this building to their 2001 acquisition, No 6 Burlington Gardens, via a new Weston Bridge. By uniting this two-acre campus, the RA now have 70% more public space available, enabling the expansion of its exhibition and events programmes and facilitating year-round displays of art and architecture all across the campus.
The redevelopment was designed by Sir David Chipperfield and Julian Harrap Architects. TRC had previously worked with Julian Harrap Architects on a three year project at Cliveden, the renowned luxury Country House Hotel , restoring 300 sash windows, casement windows and French doors. It was especially gratifying when they subsequently recommended TRC for the RA project.
The Royal Academy project involved a thorough refurbishment of 150 sash windows, including timber repairs, draught proofing, and provision of ironmongery. TRC also applied high-performance secondary glazing to a further 52 windows.
As ever with our like for like bespoke Heritage sash windows, the main aim is primarily about maintaining the original look and feel of both of these Grade I and Grade II listed buildings. Nobody should notice that the windows have been updated; they will just look in tip top condition. However, there will be a significant change and this will be the dramatic improvement in their thermal and acoustic efficiency.
Heating historic landmarks has always been expensive and so improving the insulation of the building is a real benefit of our work. If we can help to reduce heating costs, that’s another important benefit of the refurbishment. Additionally, being sandwiched between Mayfair and Piccadilly, The RA is based in possibly one of the noisiest parts of London and so all of the gains in acoustic performance will also be appreciated.
Another exciting element of this project was the supply and installation of two large, uniquely-designed rooflights. This was an extremely challenging design as, due to the priceless value of the exhibited artwork of all vintages and its key sensitivity to light, these rooflights needed to conform to exacting standards of spectral data and, of course, meet extremely stringent security criteria.
If we can help you with your heritage restoration project or you would like custom-made replacement “like for like” slim profile double glazed timber sash and casement windows, please call TRC Contracts, "Experts in Bespoke Timber Sash & Casement Windows Replacement & Restoration" on 01858 469 225 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.