Bay windows are the mainstay of UK property windows, with many homes adorned with bays of various styles and sizes since Gothic times.
Churches and cathedrals in the UK have had large stone bays as decoration for centuries, which developed over time to the space enhancing and light filling styles we often see today. There are lots of websites around with more in depth histories of these types of windows.
Rapid Growth During Victorian Times
Victorian times saw extensive rapid building throughout Britain as the population boomed and towns were developed. Along with this came more of this style of window, which are so popular to this day.
Despite the rapid expansion of buildings, many were well constructed by the Victorians, certainly towards the end of the era and with reasonable maintenance bay windows will happily last as long as the property.
A couple of the main repair issues are with rotten wood around the window frames, which need replacing together with possible settling of the building itself, which could mean structural reinforcement is necessary. This website has excellent information about repairs.
Some Styles of Bay Windows
Whichever style of bay windows a property has, dressing them can be stylish and rewarding. Interior shutters offer fabulous versatility as well as privacy when required as these photos show where the top tier of the window shutters are open.
Light control is another benefit to using this type of covering with light being able to enter a room via slats or open shutters. Wood is also an ideal material for window coverings and the natural stain of the shutters can really bring out the structure of a bay window.
This company has plenty of styles to choose from whether a property has three or more sided bays.
As for this element of bays, whether they have three, four or more sides is not really dependent on the era of the property, rather the building style.
Various names have been given to these styles and the angle of which the windows are placed, such as box bays which are at 90 degrees, or angled windows, which sometimes go by the name of canted bays. Round ones which have lesser angles are also pretty common, although they will tend to have more sections.
Whichever number of windows there are, is reflected in the name and up to eight window bays have been seen on UK property, however the most common is decidedly three sections.
You can read a bit more on property eras and styles here on the Guardian website, which gives examples, and info on how to date a property. That can be a fun game if you are pounding the streets in many of Britain’s towns and cities.
Why so Popular
This type of window remains popular for the same reasons that they have been installed in properties for centuries. They are versatile, they allow a lot of light to enter a room, but they still offer ways to give the home owner privacy from the street.
Despite the fact many are now updated with double glazing and uPVC, they still hold a certain charm and provide snugs within a room, perfect for gathering in a cosy corner or dining with friends and family. They are definitely here to stay as a design feature!