Free Trade Hall, Peter Street, Manchester, Greater Manchester
This building is located on the site of the 1819 Peterloo Massacre. The land was given by Richard Cobden to the Anti-Corn Law League and it held meetings here. This building replaced a simple brick building of 1843 which itself replaced a timber pavilion of 1840. The third building was completed in 1856. It was a permanent monument to commemorate the repeal of the Corn Laws ten years before. It has also been seen as a symbol of free trade and the wealth that it helped to generate for Manchester during the Industrial Revolution. It was built in 1853-6 to the designs of Edward Walters, the main facade to Peter Street is in the Renaissance style of architecture. The building was largely rebuilt in 1950-51, following bomb damage during WW2. This rebuilding was done by L.C. Howitt who was the City Architect.It was also used as a concert hall. The Hallé Orchestra first performed there in 1858 and continued to do so until its move in 1996 to the Bridgewater Hall. It was sold in 1997 and became a hotel. Only the facade was kept.