24 Baron Street


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
24 Baron Street, Rochdale, OL16 1SJ


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Statutory Address:
24 Baron Street, Rochdale, OL16 1SJ

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

Rochdale (Metropolitan Authority)
Non Civil Parish
National Grid Reference:


House and workshop, early C19 (constructed between 1824 and 1831).

Reasons for Designation

24 Baron Street, a small house and workshop, constructed between 1824 and 1831, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest: * as an increasingly rare example of a humble working-class house and rear workshop built in the early C19;

* the house retains its original modest appearance being built of brick with a plain stone door frame, architrave and canopy to the off-centre doorway and stone wedge lintels and stone sills to the flanking windows.

Historic interest: *  as a small-scale, back-street, domestic and industrial premises which illustrates a very particular aspect of Rochdale’s economic history within the region in the early C19, a type which now only rarely survives in Rochdale or elsewhere, and only in fragmentary form.


Baron Street was laid out between 1764 and 1795 as the access route to Summer Castle, the residence of Charles Smith (1726-1794), a textile merchant and mill owner. It may initially only have been a track, as the Plan of Rochdale surveyed in 1824 by William Swire (published in 1825 by W Wales & Co in Baines History, Directory and Gazetteer of the County Palatine of Lancaster) only shows the south part of the street. Development was slow and it was still sparsely developed when the 1:10560 Ordnance Survey map was surveyed in 1844 to 1848 (published 1851).

The site of 24 Baron Street was still undeveloped by 1824. The building is first shown as a schematic rectangle on an 1831 map engraved by William Murphy and published by John Wood. The 1844 tithe map shows the current short L-plan footprint. By that time it was part of the plot behind the Junction Inn (number 1 Oldham Road), which was owned by Sarah Ann Barnes and others, and occupied by John Brearley and others. Behind the house was a large U-plan non-residential building, probably a workshop, of which only the north-east range directly behind the house survives.

Lack of street numbering hampers identification in early ratebooks and directories. In 1916 the building was occupied by William Hardwick (or Hardwicke) and in 1935 Mrs Annie Hardwick was the occupier. William Hardwick was a gas works stoker, who is recorded in 1911 as living at nearby number 1 Summer Castle. By 1954 the occupier was H Davies.

The small house and the adjoining workshop are a typical example of the incremental development and expansion of artisan industry. Small-scale industry gradually outgrew the domestic context and moved to workshops to the rear of houses converted to workshops or offices. This is very similar to developments in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter, where purpose-built houses were converted by small jewellery and metalworking firms and their back gardens built over with small workshops. The group of buildings on the west side of Baron Street (numbers 4, 24, 24a, 26-28) is perhaps the best surviving example of small-scale industrial development which once characterised parts of Rochdale.


House and workshop, early C19 (constructed between 1824 and 1831).

MATERIALS: red brick with stone dressings and slate roofs.

PLAN: the house is a stubby L-shape of two storeys and a cellar. The workshop range to the rear is rectangular and is single-storeyed, possibly with a lower ground floor or basement due to the fall of land.


HOUSE: the two-storeyed house is built of red brick in English garden wall bond (5:1) with a hipped, slate roof to the street and a gable to the rear. The front, north-east elevation has an off-centre doorway with a window to each side, that to the left closer to the doorway, and two first-floor windows over the ground-floor windows. The narrow doorframe has a plain stone architrave and a shallow canopy; the door is a modern replacement. The vertical rectangular windows have stone sills and stone wedge lintels. The left-hand first-floor window has a timber fixed frame (probably replacing a sash frame); the other three windows are presently boarded up.

The south-east side elevation is close to, but not touching the adjacent building.

The ground slopes down to the right, north-west side of the house. The north-west side elevation has a single window on both the ground floor and first floor, placed right of centre. The vertical rectangular windows have stone sills and wedge lintels; they are presently boarded up. There are two blocked cellar windows with stone lintels and to the right is a doorway with a plain, stone architrave. There is a rowlock course of bricks above the lintel which suggests that it is a later insertion.

To the rear the rendered gable wall is only visible above the single-storey workshop. To the right (south-east side) of the projecting gable the building is recessed and there is a small yard, which is not visible.

WORKSHOP: the workshop range is aligned north-west, south-east and is built of red brick mostly in English garden wall bond (5:1), with a double-pitched slate roof. The north-east, elevation partially abuts the rear, gable wall of the house and wraps slightly round the rear, west corner of the house. To the right is one large opening with a stone sill, presently boarded up. This appears to be an enlargement of an earlier, smaller opening to which the shorter stone lintel, beneath another brick rowlock course, relates.

The north-west gable wall has two bricked-up windows with timber lintels at a lower level, with two ground-floor windows with timber lintels. The left-hand window has a timber frame with three-over-three panes. The right-hand window is taller, with a timber frame with two vertical panes.

The brickwork of the rear, south-west long elevation is much disturbed, either by subsidence, rebuilding, or the demolition of the two return ranges projecting to the south-west. At the centre of the elevation is a bricked-up ground-floor window with a stone lintel; just below is an opening with a timber lintel and a short, brick buttress to the right.

INTERIOR: the interior was not inspected.


Roethe, J and Williams, M 2019 Central Rochdale, Greater Manchester Historic Area Assessment (Historic England Report Series 56/2019).


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

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