Leaded Lights Restoration

A 1920s Traditional Cottage

1920-HouseIn the village of Friston East Sussex, New Leaded Lights.

A delightful and characterful cottage than was showing signs of deterioration to the original windows Our brief here was to carefully remove the offending metal windows and traditional Leaded Lights.

The leaded lights had some broken panes, cracks in the lead at the soldered joints and were showing signs of water ingress, the glass however was generally in a reasonable condition, it was imperative to reuse this glass as it had an attractive and undulating surface, this glass has not been made for many years,today it is valuable and of historical importance.

The metal windows were quite rusty on the lower rail and were due for refurbishment. We temporary glazed with clear glass for security whilst the leaded lights were being restored. The metal windows were shot blasted clean, this revealed the extent of the damage, we welded new rails onto the metal frames where required to give these old metal frames new life, these were zinc primed and undercoated in a black paint ready to be repositioned.

Rebuilding of the leaded lights began in our Horsham glass studio, rubbings were taken of the original lead matrix the glass was stripped away from the old spent lead, this was then recycled, the glass was cleaned with a de-ionised water and lint free cloths, where glass was broken we matched this glass from our own stocks and re-building began.

We used English hand drawn lead came, this lead matches the original lead exactly, we always use this quality lead, we are often asked why don’t we use inexpensive Belgium lead as you get far more lengths of lead to a 25 kilo box, this in itself explains that the lead is thinner, lighter and can therefore not match the original, so we always used English Hand Drawn quality lead came.

Once the leaded lights were completely and waterproofed we returned them to the Friston, East Sussex Cottage to reglaze the metal windows and leaded lights fit to face a good future.

Antique glass

antique-glassFull restoration of traditional leaded lights in-house.

Our glass Conservation and Restoration studio constantly has interesting windows being restored in our hands. We stock very many types of old fashioned glass that are no longer produced. We also stock many types of different lead to suit all types. Our restoration studio has been operating since 1972. Working solely on histories glass.

Arundel Castle

arundleLozenge Leaded Lights.

We have been asked to restore many windows at Arundel Castle over the years. This particular window is in the restaurant, it has the most beautiful clear antique glass and a pleasure to work on.

St Wilfrids Priory, Arundel. Window Restoration.

St-wilfredsSt Wilfrids Priory, today is an excellent care home at the top of the ancient High Street next to Arundel Castle.

It has many very old traditionally Leaded windows all within stone mullions with opening metal casements.

This particular window was due for restoration because the leaded glass was bowing and allowing water ingress plus the opening casements were rusting. We carefully removed the glass & casements from the stone surround and boarding over securely. The glass was taken to of Horsham Studio for complete restoration, photography was taken before two rubbings were made of the lead matrix on full sized sheets of paper.

The glass was stripped away and cleaned for re-use from the spent lead came with was then re-cycled. Rebuilding the complete panels with new English hand drawn lead came began, glass to match the original was selected where some glass was broken. the metal casement windows were shot blasted to remove all rust where the full condition of he frames could be seen, in this case only minimal work was required in ease and adjustment once the rust has disappeared, painting began with a zinc based primer and black undercoat.

Each piece of re-used glass was chosen for its quality in rebuilding these leaded panels any glass with cracks or incorrect glass or sizing were discarded, slowly the panels took shape until complete, then each lead joint were professionally soldered together, once fully soldered and quite firm to the touch the panels were waterproofed with a special sealer and left for two days to harden before being polished with black polish this to help fight the riggers of the weather.

Once the Leaded Lights and metal casements were complete we arrived back at Arundel to re-fit the panels into the stonework. The application of lead panels and metal windows to stonework is not straightforward, we have to use materials that are as soft as the stone itself, materials that are fully compatible. Here we used a hydraulic lime base with washed semi sharp sand and stone dust to match the colour of the stone, carefully application is imperative to make sure that the mixture is bedded deep into the foundations of the rebate then compacted to give a strong resilient pointing to face the rigours of the weather. Fit to face the future.

Stone Mullioned Window Restoration with Traditional Leaded Lights.

mullion-windowsWe are often asked if we are able to restore metal and oak windows along with our traditional leaded light service.

Since the 1980’s we have restored both traditional metal and wooden windows with traditional leaded lights, We understand the stonework structure, the differing types of stone, the materials associated with stonework application, installation and repair, we work with professional stonemasons when large applications of stone are required plus we have good experience ourselves in the delicate removal of windows from stonework mullions and jambs plus the re-application of windows into stonework with professional re-pointing.

We stock large quantities of hydraulic limes, semi sharp washed sands of various types and stone dusts  to enable us to obtain as close a match of mortar finished colours as possible, we do not use Portland cement at all. We take pleasure in working with Conservation officers from many local planning offices.

We pride ourselves in the quality of work that we produce as professionals in our field and service to our customers, we specialise and do not deviate into any other areas at all other than Traditional Leaded Lights and the restoration of Metal and Wooden windows in properties from Tudor times to the 1950s.

Alresford Hampshire, Oak Windows

Alresford-HampshireSussex Pins and Leaded Lights.

We were asked to price for the front elevation of a detached Listed Cottage in the little village of Alresford Hampshire.

The work consisted of five windows which had deteriorated over time, the cottage had recently been sold and the new owners wanted to put the cottage back to how it would have been before it had deteriorated.

We worked with the Conservation Officers wishes to remake these windows in English oak, these windows required the mouldings and dimensions to match the original exactly, they also required traditional “Sussex Pin” opening casements.

Sussex Pins are windows that originated in Sussex but crept over the borders into Kent, Hampshire and Surrey over the many centuries since they were originally made by a Sussex Blacksmith in wrought iron, they are quite a basic construction being made from one inch wide framework and two “pin“ hinges allowing the casement to simply lift off in the opening position allowing for easy painting.

The leaded light is then attached to the Sussex Pin by a series of holes drilled at regular intervals, the leaded light is placed on top then a copper wire is soldered to it through the holes, the copper wire is then soldered from behind literally attaching it to the Sussex Pin.

These we made as you can see in the photo along with “fixed” leaded lights. As very little original glass remained we had to source the correct glass for the era, we do usually keep this glass in stock however with many of the worlds production of Antique glass in demise our stocks were quite low, here we required almost seven metres to complete this order, eventually we sourced this glass and work could begin. Each traditional Leaded Light was manufactured in-house with hand drawn lead came to match the original dimensions exactly all hand made to exacting standards.

We were able to complete this order on time with very pleasing results.

Here we see the order completed ready to be delivered.

Clifford G Durant. P.A.C.R. I.O.C. Accredited Glass Conservator of Historic glass.


We are proud to specialise in traditional Leaded Light glass, we concentrate solely on Traditional Leaded Lights and refurbishing steel windows. We keep large stocks of traditional glass and metal window components. Clifford Durant A.C.R. is an Accredited Glass restorer/conservator.



The Glasshouse Studio
New Street
West Sussex
RH13 5DU

Telephone: 01403 264607
Mobile: 07860 310 138
Email: cliff@surreyleadedlights.co.uk