‘Balconette has been an extremely good company to deal with from Day One’

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More than 22 metres of Balconette’s Aerofoil Balustrade System have created this stunning balcony on a new flat-roofed extension to a 1930s property overlooking the Epsom Downs in Surrey. However, the project was not without its challenges.

Finally installed in August 2022, the balustrade runs along the length of a balcony above a new family room with a new first-floor main bedroom extension. The works also connected the main house to a former separate granny flat, which has been turned into a large kitchen/living area.

Keen on glass to keep the countryside views, homeowner Mike Parsley started his balustrade research online five years ago, saying: “I was very impressed by the amount of information that was freely made available on the Balconette website. Their website is very comprehensive.

“This made me think ‘this company knows what they’re doing, they have got confidence in themselves and their products, therefore, they are very happy to let people view it in a level of detail that was unobtainable anywhere else that I found’. One evening’s browsing and I was already getting to know the Balconette products quite well.

“So, I paid them an impromptu visit the very next day and after a good chat with their technical team, I was very happy that I’d found a company I felt I could definitely do business with.”

The first challenge arose with the positioning of the posts during construction of the flat roof and terrace, as Mike explains: “We needed to fit the systems’ posts onto timber joists protruding out over the front walls. So, my architect had to come up with a novel way of fixing the 60mm posts to the timber flat roof construction so that the leverage of the specified max outward impact force on the handrail would be properly absorbed into the roof timbers without any damage to their construction or loosening of the post foot fixings.

“To achieve this, we used a specific heavy duty metal joist hanger wrapped over a horizontal timber to transmit forces travelling down the posts into the roof joists on which a person would be standing.”

Another concern was a slight difference in the glass tolerances. Working with installer Paul Frampton of Timbertech Southern Ltd, a Balconette Registered Partner, (and his colleague Paul) Mike and the Two Pauls figured that by swapping two glass panels over, they could achieve a uniform look to the gaps between the panels.

“They are really excellent guys, forward thinking as they work, and installed the balustrade in three days,” continues Mike. “Overall, I was very happy with the overall deal and the finished product. Everybody who has seen the balustrade has definitely thought ‘wow, that looks good!’


“I’ve had excellent service throughout, and Balconette has been an extremely good company to deal with from Day One.”

On the choice of handrail, Mike ‘just homed in’ on the Aerofoil profile in Balconette’s unique Royal Chrome finish, adding: “I saw all versions when I visited their showroom. The Aerofoil has the advantage that we could have a greater distance between a wall fixing and a corner – up to a four-metre span. For longer runs Balconette suggested we use 60mm posts. They look well-proportioned under the Aerofoil rail and with their eight-point fixing into timbers we were able to minimise the number of posts while still meeting the structural requirements – another example of real partnership while working with Balconette.

“I also think the Aerofoil handrail, certainly for this application, was more aesthetically pleasing. On first viewing the possibilities, I was immediately attracted to the Aerofoil, and it’s more comfortable to lean on while admiring the view across the fields.

“Then it was a case of do we go silver anodised or bronze or Royal Chrome. Seeing the three options side by side, it was one of the easiest decisions I ever made in the whole of this building project!”

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