Manchester Town Hall

Posted on by Hannah Waugh

Manchester Town Hall is a Victorian, Neo-gothic municipal building in Manchester it is the ceremonial headquarters of Manchester City Council and holds a number of local government departments. The front of the building faces Albert Square, the square is home to the Albert Memorial and from the rear you can see St Peters Square which features The Cenotaph and St Peters Cross.

Town Hall Clock

Town Hall Clock

Manchester town hall albert square landmark

Colin Brooks making the detailing on the Town Hall safe

Manchester town hall albert square landmark

Manchester Town hall clock

The building was designed by architect Alfred Waterhouse, and completion of the work was done in 1877. There is a mixture of offices and ceremonial rooms, like the Great Hall that contains busts and statues of influential figures. The building exterior is mainly dominated by a clock tower that is 280 ft. high and has a clock bell within called ‘Great Abel’. In 1938 a extension was built but it was separate to the main structure, so with the extension came two covered bridges over Lloyd Street.

Metrolink near the Town Hall

Metrolink near the Town Hall

Manchester town hall albert square landmark  visit extension

Manchester town hall extension

A few years later, in 1952 the town hall was granted Grade I listed building status; across the world many class it as one of the finest interpretations of Gothic revival architecture.

Manchester town hall albert square landmark clock town

Cogs on in the clock tower

Manchester town hall albert square landmark clock town

Cogs on in the clock tower

Manchester town hall albert square landmark clock town

Cogs on in the clock tower

Manchester town hall albert square landmark  visit china chinese

Richard Leese with His Excellency Meng Jianzhu

Manchester town hall albert square landmark  visit china chinese

China’s President Xi Jinping visiting Manchester Town Hall

Manchester town hall albert square landmark clock town

Cogs on in the clock tower

The original civic administration in Manchester also housed a police office and was located on King Street, this was replaced by the first town hall that would accommodate the growing local government. This town hall on King Street was designed by Francis Goodwin and was constructed between the years 1822-25, the exterior on the front of the building featured columns across a recessed centre, the building stood 134 feet high. As the wealth of the city grew the administration moved to a new building, the façade was removed to Heaton Park in 1912. In 2014 a 24 hour police station reopened in the town hall, unlike the original one it didn’t have custody cells but facilities to interview and is the perfect location should anybody require police assistance.

Manchester town hall albert square landmark virgin media

Virgin Media’s twitter derby lighting up Manchester Town Hall

Manchester town hall albert square landmark clock town

Manchester Christmas Markets

Manchester town hall albert square landmark clock town tower

View from the clock tower

Manchester town hall albert square landmark clock town

Jesnon Button driving his F1 car through Manchester

More recently, as the building bears a slight resemblance to the Palace of Westminster it has been used for a number of TV and film locations. The 2003 BBC series State of Play, 2008 film Sherlock Holmes, The Iron Lady ad Victor Frankenstien. When the queen was touring 2012 the city as part of her Diamond Jubilee celebrations at her stop in the town hall for a lunch but this is also where John and Frances Canning were getting married, while they were there they got the chance to meet the Queen who dropped in on their wedding.

Manchester town hall albert square landmark  visit china chinese queen royalty

Her royal Majesty visiting the Town Hall dropped in on a wedding

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