St. George's Square: Britannia Buildings


Deposited Plan Number:no data
Plans Register:no data
Street:St. George's Square
Property Name / Number:Britannia Buildings
Area:Town Centre, HD1 1LG
Grid Reference:SE1443116847
Building Project:Britannia Buildings
Applicant:George Crossland [commissioned by]
Applicant Address:no data
Architect:William Cocking
Architect Address:Huddersfield
Status of Project:no data
Contractor:no data
Contractor Address:no data
Work Commenced:1856
Work Completed:1856
Occupants:no data
Subsequent Alterations / History:Existing, 1920s ground floor windows & alterations, Grade II* Listed (29 September 1978)
English Heritage Listing:1232119 — listed on 29 September 1978 (old ID: 407016)
Location of Archives:no data
Buildings of Huddersfield ID:3909


Additional Information

1856. Architect Sir William Tite ?(William Cocking). Ashlar sandstone. Hipped slate roof. 3 storeys. North front: Deeply moulded eaves cornice with scrolled brackets, between which are paterae or very rich festoons above each window range. Balustrade with moulded rail, vase-shaped balusters, and panelled piers with elaborate gadrooned urns. In centre parapet is segment-shaped, bears Royal Arms sculpted in high relief and above it a huge sculpture of Britannia. Acanthus decorated cornice above 1st floor. 13 ranges of sashes with glazing bars. Rusticated quoins, verniculated on ground and 1st floors. Ground floor has 6 plate glass windows with bronze mullions, installed in the 1920's with a sandstone ashlar surround in the contemporary neo-Classical manner, eclectic enough, however, to include motifs as varied as fasces combined with a Tudor rose, Egyption asps and Aztec spread eagles. 1st floor windows have cills on 4 scrolled brackets each, moulded frames, Tuscan half pilasters, full entablatures, and triangular modillioned pediments. Central window tripartite, in surround of Tuscan pilasters and entablature, breaking forward around central light, which has 1/4 columns, moulded frame, segmental head, and above this sunk panels disposed radially beneath segmental pediment, which in turn supports apron of window above it. 2nd floor windows have moulded frames, segmental heads and keystones with sunk panels between them. Panels flanking central window have elaborately carved flowers and scroll-shaped brackets.

Other elevations are simplified versions of north front with 2 differences.

1. On St Peter's Street and Station Street the end bays break forward to create a pavilion composition on the corner.

2. Ground floor was not altered in 1920's and therefore gives some idea of Tite's original design for north front.

At its most elaborate (John William Street side) ground floor elevation is as follows: horizontally rusticated plinth with plain ashlar recesses below each window: 7 ranges of round-headed sashes: rusticated and vermiculated quoins and voussoirs very boldly sculpted masks on each keystone (and one more on Station Street side) sculpted floral ornament in panels below each sill. Central bay breaks forward. Tuscan pilasters with alternately vermiculated courses, entablature and modillioned cornices frames 2 parts; the lower part is a doorway, filled in by a display case in the 1920's, segment-headed, with bolection moulding, keystone and modillioned cornice: upper part is a round-arched sash in concave recess, with rusticated voussors and quoins and very boldly sculpted mask on keystone. "John William Street," "St Peter's Street" and "Station Street" are inscribed in good Egyptian lettering on their respective fronts. Much fine classical detailing inside probably dates from 1920's remodelling.

History: Built on the first site reserved by Sir John William Ramsden, 5th Bart, for the Town Hall. When in 1853 this scheme (designed by J P Pritchett) was blocked by the Municipal Authority, Sir John proposed a Post Office for the site. This in turn was opposed by the Government Architect, so the site became vacant.

[Extract from the Historic England web site, list entry number 1232119]


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The red marker indicates the location of this record. Green and yellow dots are locations of other geotagged records, where yellow means the building was subsequently demolished.

What's Nearby?

The following records are located within 100 meters:
RecordDistance (feet & meters)
John William Street: No 17 - 37128ft39m
Station Street: Station Street Buildings 12129ft39m
St. George's Square: No 7145ft44m
Station Street: No 15154ft47m
Railway Street: No 13 - 21167ft51m
John William Street: Lion Buildings (1853) 183ft56m
John William Street: No 22-34194ft59m
Station Street: No 9 - 13203ft62m
Railway Street: Ramsden Estate Office (1871) 221ft67m
St. Peter's Street: Revenue Chambers 11 and 13243ft74m
St. Peter's Street: Department of Social Services262ft80m
George Hotel, St. George's Square: Additions and Alterations to Hotel (amended plan) (1938) - plan# 24820A265ft81m
St. George's Square: Additions to the 'George Hotel' (1899) - plan# [?32)265ft81m
St. George's Square: The George Hotel (1849) 265ft81m
John William Street: No 11 - 15270ft82m
Northumberland Street: No 1 and 3274ft83m
Westgate: The Byram Arcade 10 - 18 (1880)279ft85m
Station Street: No 1 - 7283ft86m
Westgate: New Arcade (Byram Arcade) (1878) - plan# 700288ft88m
Byram Street: No 13 to 18 (consec)310ft94m
John William Street: No 1 - 9311ft95m
John William Street: No 64 and 66319ft97m
Westgate: Ramsden Estate Offices (& adjoining buildings) (1870) - plan# 142320ft97m