Lecture and book celebrating the 150th anniversary of Bradford City Hall

Article dated Friday Jul 14, 2023 at 04:35 PM

In September 2023, the Council will be marking the 150th anniversary of Bradford City Hall and tickets are now available for a lecture celebrating this momentous milestone.

The lecture takes place on Tuesday 5 September in the Council Chamber at City Hall and will be given by local author Dr Simon Ross Valentine who has written a new book in celebration of the building’s milestone.

The book, which has been jointly funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and Bradford Council as part of the council's Bradford District Heritage Action Plan, is now available to buy from Visitor Information Centres in Bradford and Ilkley and will soon be available to borrow from libraries across the district.

More details about the lecture and how to book can be found here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/free-city-hall-150-anniversary-lecture-by-dr-simon-ross-valentine-tickets-658313041027.

Built mainly in a Medieval Gothic style, this Grade I listed building is the crowning achievement of the local architects Lockwood & Mawson, who also designed Bradford’s St George’s Hall, the Wool Exchange, and Titus Salt’s Mill and model village at Saltaire. It was originally built as a Town Hall and although Bradford became a city in 1897 it wasn’t until 1965 that its name was officially changed to City Hall.

Bradford City Hall’s most notable external feature is the splendid campanile clock tower that soars 217 feet above the multi-award winning City Park. The clock tower, which has 13 bells, is Italianate and was inspired by the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence. Another notable feature of the façade are the 35 statues of English and British monarchs which run in chronological order, with Victoria and Elizabeth I on either side of the main entrance. Unusually the statues include Oliver Cromwell who was not a king but governed as Lord Protector from 1653-1658. An extension designed by Norman Shaw and local architect FEP Edwards was opened in 1909.

The building had its Grand Opening on 9 September 1873 and exactly 150 years on, the doors of Bradford City Hall will be thrown open for members of the public to take a look round.

The extra special Open Weekend, which is part of the nationwide Heritage Open Days scheme, will take place on Saturday 9 and Sunday 10 September 2023. Visitors to the free Open Weekend will be able to take a tour around the glorious building to learn all about its rich history.

There will be further special events to help celebrate this major milestone in the history of the Bradford district. For details of this and other special events and activities to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Bradford City Hall see the Council’s website www.bradford.gov.uk


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