Planners Look Again At Windows Policy

PLANNERS have been forced into a rethink on proposals to stop owners of listed buildings installing double glazing.

Councillors sent the proposals away for a rethink at Monday’s meeting of Scottish Borders Council planning and building standards committee after a last-minute intervention from a Galashiels glazing company.

The proposals had suggested that owners of listed buildings or prominent buildings in conservation areas should only be allowed to install single-glazed windows because double-glazed replacements needed wider wooden bars and so would not have the same dimensions and appearance of the originals.

However, the owners of Mitchell Glass, Susan and Peter Roden, lobbied councillors to change the plan because they said it was now possible to create double-glazed windows which looked exactly the same as the older, single-glazed originals.

Susan said the proposed prohibition was a nonsense in these days of environmental awareness and energy efficiency.

She commented: “It was totally against what we are doing just now – we are trying to get energy efficient windows. Windows will soon be rated like fridges and other appliances for energy efficiency, and we are working at the moment to increase the insulation of windows. It went totally against the grain to say if it’s a historic building it’s exempt.”

She said husband Peter, who is the company’s managing director, had worked closely with experts to develop authentic-looking windows which included double glazing, adding: “We know that you can do the windows that can tick all the boxes – we like to make the houses look nice. We have spent a lot of time with Historic Scotland trying to get the dimensions right.”

By Staff Copy

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