Australian heritage timber sash windows

Double Hung Sash Windows Australia

Wooden sash windows are an integral part of Australia's architectural culture and should be preserved.


Sash Window Specialist Australia Branches

Heritage Sash Window Repair & Restoration

Wooden double hung sash windows arrived in Australia with the early European settlers. With no air conditioning available they understood that fully functioning sash windows allowed for good ventilation and so were well suited to a hot climate. By opening both top & bottom sashes an air current is formed. Cooler air flows through the bottom, as hot air vents from the top. The traditional vertically sliding design and timber construction remained popular for many years before the trend moved towards alternative window types, primarily due to cheaper manufacturing costs.

Many of the original box sash windows still remain today, however due to neglect or wear and tear many heritage windows are left inoperable or rattling and draughty at best. In fact many home owners remain unaware that both the top and bottom sashes should be able to slide, and so miss out on the ventilation potential their windows should offer them.

In some instance home owners have chosen to replace the original windows with alternative window technologies.  Alternatives that offer enormous benefits such as draught seals, ease of operation and security locks, but rarely do these alterations enhance the  internal or external appearance of heritage buildings.

“We believe that our Australian heritage should be preserved and not replaced.”

Sash Window Specialist Australia can renovate your double-hung sliding sash or wooden casement windows; Installing draught seals, security locks as well as replacing damaged wood or glazing.  After our full recondition service your heritage windows will be ready to face many more years of use. 

Originally established over 20 years ago in the UK, we expanded into Australia in 2003. Sash Window Specialist have reconditioned thousands of heritage windows for many satisfied customers. All of our installation staff are fully experienced, qualified craftsmen with an intimate knowledge of heritage timber windows.

We continually strive to offer a friendly & professional service from our Australian and UK branches.

Visit The Australian Blog page For Examples Of Our Work

Australian Sash Windows

Colonial Windows

A First Fleet of British ships arrived at Botany Bay in January 1788 to establish a penal colony. Consequently the earliest Australian architectural style copied the Georgian style from Britain. Most buildings erected in the first 50 years of Australian settlement were simple and plain, windows were usually small, and multi-paned with cylinder glass.  Glass manufacturing was expensive and limited to smaller panes of glass, the narrow astragal glazing bars often termed ‘colonial bars’ allowed for larger window sashes. As the Australian economy developed and settlements became more established, more sophisticated buildings emerged in the Old Gothic and Regency style. 

Australian Victorian Sash Windows

During the reign of Queen Victoria British migration increased and settlers in the colonies were able to utilize the latest and most fashionable advancements in Victorian architecture.  Public buildings, across the colonies, were routinely designed in Britain by prominent architects of the time.

First appearing around 1830, the group of styles, collectively referred to as Victorian architecture is a series of architectural revival styles from the mid-to-late 19th century. With so many different styles arising during the reign of Queen Victoria, it may begin to seem as though these are all different architectural styles.  Sash windows, columns, bay windows, turrets, dormers, cornices, and gables are the common theme.

Victorian Gothic revival

The Gothic style became widespread in the 19th century, characterized by its ornate stone and brick structures.  Victorian Gothic architecture was lavished with ornamentation and decoration.  Victorian sash windows incorporated curved horns, arched heads, intricate mouldings, lead-lights and latticework to adorned the sashes.  Windows were often grouped into impressive bays, offset with ornate stone reveals.  Graduating the size of windows from the ground upwards not only improved the perspective but also increased the amount of  light to the lower rooms.

Late Victorian

The Industrial Revolution brought many technological advancements, including the manufacture of larger panes of glass.  Window styles from this period were simpler, typically featuring either single panes or two over two vertical split glazing pattern.  The bullnose veranda roof started to appear, timber fretwork became common and sidelights were added beside the front door. 

Filigree / Italianate

A prominent feature of Australian architecture is the wrought iron filigree balcony often termed ‘iron-lace’. Many homes constructed during the 1870s and the 1880s were two storey Victorian Filigree terraces.  Filigree also became a popular adornment for gates, verandahs and doorways.

Federation Windows

1890 – 1915  Australia adopted the term ‘Federation Architecture’ when referencing the Edwardian style of architecture in Australia.  It was not uncommon to have casement window frames and double hung windows located in the same house. Fanlights and coloured glass were common features in sidelights and above the doors.

The start of the Edwardian period began when Edward VII became king in 1901 and is generally recognized to have lasted until 1920 – 10 years after Edward’s death. Edwardian style borrowed freely from the eras that preceded it, combining the best features of the Georgian and Victorian styles.  Double hung Edwardian sash windows commonly incorporated a six over two glazing configuration. By the early 1900s, side hinged casement windows became increasingly popular.  A popular style for the casement window was to be grouped into a bow window featuring a decorative Art Nouveau or Neo-Georgian lead lights on the upper section.

Federation Queen Anne (Queen Anne revival)

style was a revived form of English Baroque architectural styles and is considered to span 1880–1900, although the popular style persisted for another decade. The style was named and popularized in England by the architect Richard Norman Shaw.

Lower window sashes usually had only a single pane of glass with the upper sash being multi-paned, typically in a six over one configuration. More elaborate windows featured sashes with stained or coloured glass in the upper portion.


Adopting much from the Queen Ann style, Anglo-Dutch is characterised by the plain red-brown brickwork of their façades and the stepped or scalloped dutch gables in their roofs.  Windows are typically of the Queen Ann style; double-hung and painted white.

Other Australian Architecture


Queenslander architecture is a modern term for the typical residential architecture of Queensland, Australia.  The characteristic trait of these timber homes, built on stumps, is a veranda that extends around the house to varying extents. Alignment of doors and windows to allow uninterrupted air flow helped to cool living areas.   The Queenslander has been constructed in all the popular styles of the time, including Colonial, Victorian, Federation, Art Nouveau, Interwar styles, and post-World War II styles.  Queenslanders are still constructed today using modern styles, as well as “reproductions” of previous styles.


First introduced to Sydney in 1906 the American California Bungalow style was usually a single-storey house with the roof covering a prominent verandah. Timber casement windows were most frequently used on the frontage.  The Federation Bungalow style was the Australian response to the American Bungalow styles. It can be regarded as a transition between Federation Queen Ann and the American Bungalow.  Tuck pointed brick work, ornamental verandahs and multi-paned timber casement windows with leadlights featuring Australian fauna and flora.

Sash Window Specialist Australia renovate, repair & restore your existing wooden sash or casement windows.  Our double glazing & draught proofing upgrades will improve the comfort and security of your home, without detracting from the original heritage appearance.

"I have been delighted with them. I had old secondary glazing in the front which was ugly and did not do the job. I now no longer have condensation dripping down the windows and the house is quieter and warmer. After doing some research into specialist companies I am so pleased that I chose the Sash Window Specialist. Liam is very knowledgeable and the work carried out was done with the minimum of disruption. My new windows have transformed the house. Very happy with the Sash Window Specialists and would certainly recommend without hesitation"
Replacement Double Glazed Sashes & Draught Sealing