Both Macclesfield Town Hall and Crewe Municipal Buildings are fine example of Georgian architecture.
Both buildings are owned by Cheshire East Council. While some parts of the buildings are used for council business, they have both been refurbished and are available to host activities.
Macclesfield Town Hall
Macclesfield Town Hall is a fine example of Georgian architecture, designed by Francis Goodwin in 1823.
The foundation stone was laid on September 4th 1823. The building was extended in 1869, by local architect James Stevens, and again in 1870 the hall had extensions and was remodelled to incorporate a police station and completed in 1871. The town hall was again altered in 1992 to accommodate more offices and the new building was opened by HRH Prince Andrew.
The newly refurbished Town Hall re-opened to the public in June 2012. The work has restored the Town Hall to a standard befitting its outward grandeur as a significant listed building. Works included a new lift access, disabled toilets, glazed lobby area and redecoration throughout.
Crewe Municipal Buildings
Crewe Municipal Buildings was designed in a Baroque style by architect Thomas Henry Hare (1861-1921). Built between 1902 and 1905 and opened on July 19th 1905, the front of the building features bas relief panels by sculptor Frederick EE Schenk (1849-1908). In the centre is a semicircular-headed entrance with wrought iron gates, and this is flanked by semicircular-headed windows; all these are surmounted by carved reclining figures representing the trades and industries of Crewe.
Municipal Buildings Crewe - historical timeline
- The town of Crewe was granted its Charter of Incorporation in 1877 and Crewe Town Council began to take up the reins of local Government.
- As the town expanded and staff increased, a site was sought in the centre of the town for the new Municipal Offices.
- It was in May 1902 that the Borough Surveyor was instructed by the council to advertise a competition on a national basis, for architects to submit plans and specifications and estimates for the new building, with a first prize of £50.
- The winner was Architect Henry T Hare of London and his trade mark of a hare appears in the corner of two of the windows on the main staircase.
- On 3rd September 1903 the foundation stone was laid by the Mayor, James Henry Moore.
- The builders were Robert Neil and Sons of Manchester, the contract price being £14,752, although the total cost including furnishings, fee, and expenses was in the region of £20,000.
- The new Municipal Offices in English Baroque style were opened on 19th July 1905.
- Carved in stone above the main entrance is the model of a famous Crewe built Locomotive – numbered 955 and named Charles Dickens.
- The walls and ceiling are panelled with a decorative plaster design of flowers and fruit. This ornamental design is repeated on the ceiling of the staircase.
- Tuscan columns in entrance hall, York stone geometrical staircase, marble Ionic columns and a window in Venetian style in the Council Chamber.
- On the second floor is the council Chamber which can accommodate up to 80 people and a small Strangers Gallery at one end, which can accommodate about 30 people.
- The Mayoral suite, comprising Parlour and Reception room, has fireplaces of Campin Vert and Cappolino marble and the floors are polished Wainscot oak and the decorative plaster panelling is again used on the walls and ceilings.
- The parlour is 18ft x18ft and the Reception room is 30ft x 18ft. The original furnishings have been replaced over the years.
- There are two large rooms (East and West Committee Rooms) one either side of the Mayoral suite.
- The roof has a small turret in the centre, topped by a weather-vane surmounted by a model of George Stephenson’s ‘Rocket’ – again emphasising the connection of the Town with the railway.
- A weather-vane also tops the extension at the rear, this is a replica of a Rolls Royce motor car, a Silver Cloud 111, indicating Crewe’s link with the then other major employer in the town, Rolls Royce.