Peter York on Ads: Yellow is the new white in the world of uPVC. Just ask big Josephine

TWC replacement windows
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The Independent Online

Which is worst dear reader: stone-cladding; new front doors with built-in Georgian fanlights; liver-coloured reconstituted stone paving blocks in front gardens or new porches in Bisto-stained wood with wobbly obscured glass? Or replacement windows? It's all awful but I'd go for replacement windows. There are many of them: 99.9 per cent are made of uPVC and once installed, they're rarely taken away again. Like bright, acrylic teeth in crinkly, old faces they don't work. So anyone selling replacement windows is guilty unless proven innocent to me.

Which is worst dear reader: stone-cladding; new front doors with built-in Georgian fanlights; liver-coloured reconstituted stone paving blocks in front gardens or new porches in Bisto-stained wood with wobbly obscured glass? Or replacement windows? It's all awful but I'd go for replacement windows. There are many of them: 99.9 per cent are made of uPVC and once installed, they're rarely taken away again. Like bright, acrylic teeth in crinkly, old faces they don't work. So anyone selling replacement windows is guilty unless proven innocent to me.

The replacement window industry has a difficult history anyway with hard sell and dodgy claims (noise reduction and energy conservation). And when Nimby conservationist, old-house-loving middle-class types - that's us readers - bang on about aesthetic pollution, things get deeply sensitive because it's a class issue (even a sub-class issue because there are many happy, comfortable, middle-class suburb-dwellers who think that a nice replacement window is a sensible solution - no draughts and no painting ever). So what are we doing invoking against the legitimate aspirations of ordinary working-class people? Sod off back to Notting Hill and Primrose Hill is the response. Or live in Poundbury if that's what you like. It's a peculiarly British thing, the idea that civic pride and architectural activism are middle-class luxuries - and the Turkey Twizzler is a proud symbol of proletarian resistance.

TWC replacement windows, who sell far from the chattering class centres, are pushing a new argument for their replacement windows - colour. Putting back the primary colours of kiddie TV programming. And their commercial's voice-over is in verse, as in "little Josephine's world was coloured and bright, big Josephine's world was bathed in grey light". But she needed new windows and TWC brought back the colour and made her happy - they've got windows in any colour.

Big Josephine seems to live in a Scottish, Victorian gate lodge - not quite Lorimer quality but you or I could make something charming from it with a decent joiner. But the TWC men are delivering in primrose yellow. And municipal marigolds pop up in the gardens. There's a floral car and a lot of luminous pink. It's child-centred, it's even faintly Bollywood. So let's try fitting primrose plastic to Chatsworth and Blenheim and - here's a thought - Admiralty Arch.

Peter@sru.co.uk

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