Sackville Street Building

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Sackville Street Building
UMIST Sackville Street Building.jpg
The Sackville Street building from Whitworth Street/Aytoun Street
Former namesUMIST Main Building
General information
StatusGrade II [1]
Architectural style French Renaissance [1]
Town or cityManchester
Coordinates 53°28′35″N2°14′03″W / 53.4764°N 2.2342°W / 53.4764; -2.2342 Coordinates: 53°28′35″N2°14′03″W / 53.4764°N 2.2342°W / 53.4764; -2.2342
Construction started1895
Owner University of Manchester
Technical details
Floor count12
Renovating team
Architect Bradshaw Gass & Hope

The Sackville Street Building is a building on Sackville Street, Manchester, England. The University of Manchester occupies the building which, before the merger with UMIST in 2004, was UMIST's "Main Building". Construction of the building for the Manchester School of Technology began in 1895 on a site formerly occupied by Sir Joseph Whitworth's engineering works; it was opened in 1902 by the then Prime Minister, Arthur Balfour. [2] The School of Technology became the Manchester Municipal College of Technology in 1918.

Sackville Street (Manchester) street in Manchester, England

Sackville Street is a street in Manchester city centre, England.

University of Manchester public research university in Manchester, England

The University of Manchester is a public research university in Manchester, England, formed in 2004 by the merger of the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology and the Victoria University of Manchester. The University of Manchester is a red brick university, a product of the civic university movement of the late 19th century.

University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology

The University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST) was a university based in the centre of the city of Manchester in England. It specialised in technical and scientific subjects and was a major centre for research. On 1 October 2004, it amalgamated with the Victoria University of Manchester to form a new entity also called the University of Manchester.


Built using Burmantofts terracotta, the building is now Grade II listed. [1] It was extended along Whitworth Street, towards London Road, between 1927 and 1957 by the architects Bradshaw Gass & Hope, the delay being due to the depression in the 1930s and the Second World War. Originally a swimming pool was planned for the top floor, but after worries the weight of water might cause structural issues it was instead used as a dug in gymnasium and in more recent years as an examination hall. The lower floors contain among other departments the Royce Laboratory for mechanical engineering, named after Henry Royce. Floors are denoted by letters, from BA (lowest), then A to L (highest) missing out I.

Burmantofts Pottery

Burmantofts Pottery was the common trading name of a manufacturer of ceramic pipes and construction materials, named after the Burmantofts district of Leeds, England.

Architectural terracotta Fired clay construction material

Architectural terracotta refers to a fired mixture of clay and water that can be used in a non-structural, semi-structural, or structural capacity on the exterior or interior of a building. Terracotta is an ancient building material that translates from Latin as "baked earth". It can be unglazed, painted, slip glazed, or glazed. A piece of terracotta is composed of a hollow clay web enclosing a void space or cell. The cell can be installed in compression with mortar or hung with metal anchors. All cells are partially backfilled with mortar.

Bradshaw Gass & Hope is an English firm of architects founded in 1862 by Jonas James Bradshaw (1837–1912). The style "Bradshaw Gass & Hope" was adopted after J. J. Bradshaw's death and referred to the remaining partners John Bradshaw Gass and Arthur John Hope.

The building is bounded by Whitworth Street to the north, Granby Row to the south, Cobourg Street to the east, and Sackville Street to the west, where the original main entrance (called the Grand Entrance) lies. The entrance on Granby Row is the usual entrance to the eastern part of the building (there is another entrance on Whitworth Street only for the use of the students and staff of the University of Manchester [3] ). The historic Godlee Observatory sits on the roof and is still in use. The building is used by the University for a number of functions and departments. These include administration, teaching and research in science and technology, and examinations.

Godlee Observatory

The Godlee Observatory is an old astronomical observatory located in a tower on the roof of the University of Manchester's Sackville Street Building, in the City Centre of Manchester, England. It was given to the city of Manchester by Francis Godlee when construction was completed in 1902.

Inside on floors D, E and F are the Joule Library (now part of the University of Manchester Library) [4] and various offices, laboratories, lecture theatres and exam halls. The Joule Library was given this name (commemorating the physicist J. P. Joule) in 1987 when it was refurbished. [5] [6]

University of Manchester Library University of Manchesters library and information service

The University of Manchester Library is The University of Manchester's library and information service. The main library is on the Oxford Road campus of the University with its entrance on Burlington Street. There are also ten other library sites, eight spread out across the University's campus, plus The John Rylands Library on Deansgate and the Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre situated inside Manchester Central Library.

In July 2009, The Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre moved from its original location on Oxford Road to J floor of the building[ citation needed ]. The centre was set up by Professor Louis Kushnick (OBE) in 1999 to provide anti-racist educational resources to its users. [7]

Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre library

The Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre is 'one of Europe's leading specialist libraries on migration, race and ethnicity'. Open to members of the public as well as to students and researchers, it is an open access library on race, ethnicity and migration located in Manchester, England. It actively celebrates cultures and fosters race relations through a range of work and initiatives. The Centre is part of The University of Manchester and is located in Manchester Central Library.

There are inscriptions at the Grand Entrance and at the Whitworth Street entrance, recording important events in the history of the building. The later part of the building was built on the site of St Augustine's Church, the third Roman Catholic chapel in Manchester. It was replaced by the second St Augustine's Church in York Street, Chorlton on Medlock. There is also a plaque recording the previous existence of Ivan Levinstein's laboratory on the site.

In the estates strategy for 2010-2020 for the University of Manchester [8] it is stated that essentially all of the former UMIST campus, described as the "area north of the Mancunian Way," is to be disposed of. The fate of the former UMIST Main Building (Sackville Street Building) is not described. The vice-chancellor of Manchester University, Dame Nancy Rothwell, has stated that a fitting use must be found for this "fine old building."

Sackville Street Building currently serves as the home for the University of Manchester's school of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (EEE) along with providing a base for textile sciences and nuclear science at the Dalton Institute on site.

See also

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  1. 1 2 3 Historic England. "Institute of Science and Technology (1247609)". National Heritage List for England . Retrieved 30 October 2012.
  2. "UMIST campus history". Retrieved 9 February 2008.
  3. "Sackville Street Building, Manchester Disabled Access Guide". Retrieved 26 November 2015.
  4. John Rylands University Library (The). "Joule Library". Archived from the original on 17 March 2009. Retrieved 2 April 2009.
  5. "Design Awards 1992". Archived from the original on 5 October 2009. Retrieved 2 April 2009.
  6. Joule Library, 1987
  7. "Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre". University of Manchester. Retrieved 7 December 2009.
  8. "The University of Manchester : Estates Strategy : 2010-2020". Retrieved 31 July 2016.

Further reading