Apropos: Quality Engineering Since 1938.

Published on 15th January 2014
It was a big year, 1938. Czechoslovakia was formed, Hitler came to power, the photocopier was invented, Frank Sinatra was arrested on charges of seduction, Los Angeles flooded, China and Japan went to war, War of the Worlds aired on radio, David Bailey and Derek Jacobi were born, and Apropos built their first glass structure.

We’ve been building ever since.

75 years is a long time in both business and architecture. Processes change, technology advances, and yet that’s what makes this business exciting. We’ve grown and developed with the world around us, setting some trends and following others, but while our designs have influenced the glass architectural scene, it is the developments we have made in technique, materials and engineering that make us really proud.

Apropos began life as Hartley Botanic, a company dedicated to the production of greenhouses that were both functional and beautiful. Discovering the unique malleability, durability and strength of aluminium, and its benefits over traditional counterparts, Vincent Hartley was the first to successfully use the material to form a greenhouse frame – he copyrighted the process and Hartley Botanic began. Vincent went on to create not only an extremely successful greenhouse business, but a number of ingenious inventions, including a means of permanently sealing glass into frames to enhance thermal protection.

It is thanks to the inquiring mind of Vincent Hartley that the first Apropos structure is still in use today. However, ahead of his time though he was, Hartley could never have imagined the ways in which glass architecture has advanced in the intervening years.

Glass is now stronger, safer, more thermally sound and available with a variety of coatings that can resist fire, clean itself and switch from clear to opaque. Rolled thermal break technology allows us to offer the finest sight lines possible while delivering an incredibly strong, air-tight frame suitable for use in the home, rather than just for outbuildings. At Apropos, we also have the equipment to enable us to not just design and build bespoke structures, but to actually make every single component necessary to complete each project.

The Apropos “system” now consists of design, custom manufacture, trial build and installation to produce a glass and aluminium structure that will totally transform any building, bringing light, space and a feeling of modernity. But while our techniques and our business brief may have changed, many things remain true to Vincent Hartley’s ethos. Not least the fact that quality was, is, and always will be, a key part of the Apropos experience.

If you would like to order your free copy of Apropos’ 2013 brochure please click here or call us on 0161 342 8200. To book a complimentary design consultation with our highly regarded design team please click here.



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