The façade of Guildhall
|Location||Guildhall Yard, EC2V|
|OS grid reference|
|Area||City of London|
|Owner||City of London Corporation|
|Official name: Guildhall|
|Designated||4 January 1950|
Guildhall is a municipal building in the Moorgate area of the City of London, England. It is situated off Gresham and Basinghall streets, in the wards of Bassishaw and Cheap. The building has been used as a town hall for several hundred years, and is still the ceremonial and administrative centre of the City of London and its Corporation. It should not be confused with London's City Hall, the administrative centre for Greater London. The term "Guildhall" refers both to the whole building and to its main room, which is a medieval great hall. The nearest London Underground stations are Bank, St Paul's and Moorgate. It is a Grade I-listed building.
During the Roman period, the Guildhall was the site of an amphitheatre, the largest in Britannia, partial remains of which are on public display in the basement of Guildhall Art Gallery and the outline of whose arena is marked with a black circle on the paving of the courtyard in front of the hall. Indeed, the siting of the Saxon Guildhall here was probably due to the amphitheatre's remains.Excavations by Museum of London Archaeology at the entrance to Guildhall Yard exposed remains of the great 13th-century gatehouse built directly over the southern entrance to the Roman amphitheatre, which raises the possibility that enough of the Roman structure survived to influence the siting not only of the gatehouse and Guildhall itself but also of the church of St Lawrence Jewry whose strange alignment may shadow the elliptical form of the amphitheatre beneath.
The first documentary reference to a London Guildhall is dated 1128.Legend describes the Guildhall site as being the location of the palace of Brutus of Troy, who according to Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae (1136) is said to have founded a city on the banks of the River Thames, known as Troia Nova, or New Troy.
The great hall is believed to be on a site of an earlier Guildhall (one possible derivation for the word "guildhall" is the Anglo-Saxon "gild", meaning payment, with a "gild-hall" being where citizens would pay their taxes). Possible evidence for this derivation may be in a reference to John Parker, the sergeant of "Camera Guyhalde", London, in 1396.
The current building began construction in 1411 and completed in 1440.Trials at the Guildhall have included those of Anne Askew (the Protestant martyr), Thomas Cranmer (Archbishop of Canterbury) and Lady Jane Grey ("the Nine Days' Queen") as well as Henry Garnet (executed for his complicity in the Gunpowder Plot of 1605).
The 1783 hearing of the infamous Zong case, the outcome of which focused public outrage about the transatlantic slave trade, also took place at Guildhall.On 16 November 1848, the pianist Frédéric Chopin made his last public appearance on a concert platform there.
The Great Hall did not completely escape damage in the Great Fire of London in 1666; it was partially restored (with a flat roof) in 1670. The present grand entrance (the east wing of the south front), in "Hindoostani Gothic", was added in 1788 by George Dance.A more extensive restoration than that in 1670 was completed in 1866 by the City of London architect Sir Horace Jones, who added a new timber roof in close keeping with the original hammerbeam ceiling. This replacement was destroyed during the Second Great Fire of London on the night of 29/30 December 1940, the result of a Luftwaffe fire-raid. It was replaced in 1954 during works designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, but the original hammerbeam design was not retained.
The marathon route of the 2012 Summer Olympics passed through Guildhall Yard.
The day-to-day administration of the City of London Corporation is now conducted from modern buildings immediately to the north of Guildhall, but Guildhall itself and the adjacent historic interiors are still used for official functions, and it is open to the public during the annual London Open House weekend. Guildhall Art Gallery was added to the complex in the 1990s. Guildhall Library, a public reference library with specialist collections on London, which include material from the 11th century onwards, is also housed in the complex.
Two giants, Gog and Magog, are associated with Guildhall. Legend has it that the two giants were defeated by Brutus and chained to the gates of his palace on the site of Guildhall. Early carvings of Gog and Magog were destroyed in Guildhall during the Great Fire of London. They were replaced in 1708 by a large pair of wooden statues carved by Captain Richard Saunders. These giants, on whom the current versions are based, lasted for over two hundred years before they were destroyed in the Blitz. They, in turn, were replaced by a new pair carved by David Evans in 1953 and given to the City of London by Alderman Sir George Wilkinson, who had been Lord Mayor in 1940 at the time of the destruction of the previous versions.
Guildhall hosts many events throughout the year, the most notable one being the Lord Mayor's Banquet, which is held in honour of the immediate-past Lord Mayor and is the first to be hosted by the new Lord Mayor of the City of London. In keeping with tradition, it is at this banquet that the Prime Minister makes a major world affairs speech. One of the last acts of the outgoing Lord Mayor is to present prizes at the City of London School prize day at Guildhall. Other events include those of various law firms, award evenings for the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET), and the banquet for the International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC).The Worshipful Company of Carmen holds its cart-marking ceremony in the courtyard each July.
The Members Bar in the Guildhall is a highly subsidised facility for members of the Court of Common Council and the Court of Aldermen.However access to the facilities becomes a privilege for life even after an individual is no longer a member of either of these courts. Members can also entertain guests there. With spirits available for as little as 60p in October 2017, it is substantially cheaper than any other bar in the City of London. The bar is subsidised from the City's Cash, a sovereign wealth fund.
The City of London is a city, county and a local government district that contains the historic centre and the primary central business district (CBD) of London. It constituted most of London from its settlement by the Romans in the 1st century AD to the Middle Ages, but the agglomeration has since grown far beyond the City's borders. The City is now only a tiny part of the metropolis of London, though it remains a notable part of central London. Administratively, it forms one of the 33 local authority districts of Greater London; however, the City of London is not a London borough, a status reserved for the other 32 districts. It is also a separate ceremonial county, being an enclave surrounded by Greater London, and is the smallest county in the United Kingdom.
The Lord Mayor of London is the City's mayor and the leader of the City of London Corporation. Within the City of London, the Lord Mayor is accorded precedence over all individuals except the sovereign and retains various traditional powers, rights and privileges, including the title and style The Right Honourable Lord Mayor of London.
Gog and Magog appear in the Hebrew Bible and Quran 21:96 as individuals, tribes, or lands. In Ezekiel 38, Gog is an individual and Magog is his land; in Genesis 10 Magog is a man, but no Gog is mentioned; and centuries later Jewish tradition changed Ezekiel's "Gog from Magog" into "Gog and Magog", which is the form in which they appear in the Book of Revelation, although there they are peoples rather than individuals.
The Lord Mayor's Show is one of the best-known annual events in London as well as one of the longest-established, dating back to the 16th century. A new lord mayor is appointed every year and the public parade that takes place as his or her inauguration ceremony reflects that this was once one of the most prominent offices in England.
In local government, a city hall, town hall, civic centre, guildhall, Rathaus (German), or a municipal building, is the chief administrative building of a city, town, or other municipality. It usually houses the city or town council, its associated departments, and their employees. It also usually functions as the base of the mayor of a city, town, borough, county or shire.
Moorgate is the city centre and central business district of the City of London, and is in central London, it is named after a postern in the London Wall originally built by the Romans. It was turned into a gate in the 15th century. Though the gate was demolished in 1762, the name survives as a major street in the City of London. The street with the same name connects the City to the London Boroughs of Islington and Hackney, and was constructed around 1846 as one of the new approaches to London Bridge.
Billingsgate is one of the 25 Wards of the City of London. Its name derives from being the City's original water gate, and this small City Ward is situated on the north bank of the River Thames between London Bridge and Tower Bridge in the south-east of the Square Mile.
Birmingham City Council House in Birmingham, England, is the home of Birmingham City Council, and thus the seat of local government for the city. It provides office accommodation for both employed council officers, including the Chief Executive, and elected council members, plus the council chamber, Lord Mayor's Suite, committee rooms and a large and ornate banqueting suite, complete with minstrel's gallery. The first-floor's exterior balcony is used by visiting dignitaries and victorious sports teams, to address crowds assembled below.
The Middlesex Guildhall is the home of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom and of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. It stands on the south-west corner of Parliament Square in London. It is a Grade II* listed building.
A hammerbeam roof is a decorative, open timber roof truss typical of English Gothic architecture and has been called "...the most spectacular endeavour of the English Medieval carpenter". They are traditionally timber framed, using short beams projecting from the wall on which the rafters land, essentially a tie beam which has the middle cut out. These short beams are called hammer-beams and give this truss its name. A hammerbeam roof can have a single, double or false hammerbeam truss.
The Guildhall Art Gallery houses the art collection of the City of London, England. It is a stone building in a semi-gothic style intended to be sympathetic to the historic Guildhall, which is adjacent and to which it is connected internally.
The Gog Magog Hills are a range of low chalk hills, extending for several miles to the southeast of Cambridge in England. The highest points are situated either side of the A1307 Babraham Road, and are marked on Ordnance Survey 1:25000 maps as "Telegraph Clump" at 75 m (246 ft), Little Trees Hill and Wandlebury Hill, both at 74 m (243 ft). The area as a whole is undefined but is roughly the elevated area lying north west of the 41 m (135 ft) col at Worsted Lodge.
The Guildhall in Leicester, England, is a timber framed building, with the earliest part dating from c. 1390. The Guildhall once acted as the town hall for the city until the current one was commissioned in 1876. It is located in the old walled city, on a street now known as Guildhall Lane. It was used first as the meeting place for the Guild of Corpus Christi and then later for the more formal Corporation of Leicester. The hall was used for many purposes, including council meetings, feasts, as a courtroom, and for theatrical performances; the ultimatum given to the city during English Civil War was discussed here. It is a Grade I listed building, and the surrounding area, also including the Cathedral of St Martin's, is a conservation area, one of three in Leicester.
The Guildhall Library is a public reference library specialising in subjects relevant to London. It is administered by the Corporation of London, the government of the City of London, which is the historical heart of London, England.
Richard Gilbert Scott was a British architect, born in London, the son of Giles Gilbert Scott and great-grandson of the great Gothic Revival architect George Gilbert Scott. He was educated at Harrow, Charterhouse School, Bartlett School of Architecture London University, and Regent Street Polytechnic School of Architecture.
The Royal Arcade is a historic shopping arcade in the central business district of Melbourne, Victoria. Opened in 1870, it is the oldest surviving arcade in Australia, known for its elegant light-filled interior, and the large carved mythic figures of Gog and Magog flanking the southern entry.
Northampton Guildhall is a municipal building which stands on St Giles' Square in Northampton, England. It is a Grade II* listed building.
The Guildhall is a building on Alfred Gelder Street in the City of Kingston upon Hull, East Riding of Yorkshire. The building is currently the headquarters of Hull City Council but is also used as a venue for conferences, civic receptions and formal dinners. It is a Grade II* listed building status.
Gogmagog was a legendary giant in Welsh and later English folklore. According to Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae, he was a giant inhabitant of Albion, thrown off a cliff during a wrestling match with Corineus. Gogmagog was the last of the Giants found by Brutus and his men inhabiting the land of Albion.
Sir Francis Child (1642–1713), of Hollybush House, Fulham, Middlesex and the Marygold by Temple Bar, London, was an English banker and politician who sat in the English and British House of Commons between 1698 and 1713. He served as Lord Mayor of London for the year 1698 to 1699. The goldsmith's business which he built up from 1671 later became one of the first London banks, Child & Co.