The Argent Centre (Former Argent Works)


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
The Argent Centre, 60, Frederick Street, Birmingham, B1 3HS


Ordnance survey map of The Argent Centre (Former Argent Works)
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Statutory Address:
The Argent Centre, 60, Frederick Street, Birmingham, B1 3HS

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Birmingham (Metropolitan Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SP 06085 87418


This list entry was subject to a Minor Amendment on 30/04/2018

SP 0687 SW 28/8

Hockley B1 FREDERICK STREET No 60, The Argent Centre (Former Argent Works)

(Formerly listed as Premises occupied by Gallen Kamp (Argent works))

II* Corner site with Legge Lane. The former Argent Works of 1862-63, architect J G Bland. A large three and four storey L-plan works enclosing single storey shed on two sides. Built as a pen manufacturing for Q E Wiley who also installed a Turkish Baths in the four storey block at the end of the Frederick Street range.

Red brick with stone and gault and buff brick dressings, banding and chequerwork achieving a lively polychromy. The arcaded elevations take their inspiration from Florentine-Lombard early Renaissance palazzi with corner towers to the nine bay Legge Lane front and the Hamman providing a similar emphasis to the end of the 22 bay Frederick Street range. The ground floor is slightly battered, its carcaded windows with polychrome voussoirs. A billet mould string course forms the base of the principal two storey arcade containing two light windows divided by colonettes, those on second floor with stone plate tracery in the arches. Stone machicolated main cornice with low parapet, originally pierced and later heightened in plain brick nearly to the eaves of the tower belvederes. The latter had tiled spires which have been truncated. The Hamman block has plain sash windows in the narrower bays of its arcade corresponding to those in corner towers and with the same arcaded lights to its belvedere storey. The pedimented doorway to Legge Lane is c1900 insertion. Modern waggon entrance to Frederick Street. Segmental arched doorway to former Hamman contained in right hand of three large ground floor arches. The fireproof construction is of some interest, the floors consisting of flat hollow brick arches with wrought iron tie rods linked to right L iron skewbacks, the floors are paved with brick internally and the flat roof was asphalted. The chimney stack rising to the rear of the former Hamman is square and tapered with polychrome banding to the cap. This stack served the engine of the manufactory, excess steam being used for the baths.

The Argent Works are the large in the inner jewellery quarter area and Legge Lane elevation dominates Newhall Hill.

For details of construction see "The Building News" 21 Aug 1863, p 650.

Listing NGR: SP0609387387


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
'Building News' in 21 August, (1863), 650


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

Images of England

Images of England was a photographic record of every listed building in England, created as a snap shot of listed buildings at the turn of the millennium. These photographs of the exterior of listed buildings were taken by volunteers between 1999 and 2008. The project was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Date: 20 Aug 2000
Reference: IOE01/01020/16
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr D.R. Smith. Source Historic England Archive
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