History Of Our Building
Welcome To Our Historic Listed Building
Altrincham may have got its name from incomers to sites that may have been left abandoned by the Romans. The name would have been taken from the Anglo-Saxon founder’s name, Aldhere. It was probably called ALDHERINGHAM. This meant the ‘ham’ (homestead or village of Aldhere’s ‘inga (people), or more simply ‘Aldhers’s place. Its name would subsequently have developed into ALDRINGEHAM and then to its present name. The Royal Charter allowing the Lord Atrincham, Hamo de Masci, to hold a market and fair at Altrincham was sealed by Edward 1 on July, AD 1290 and was followed by Hamo’s own charter creating Altrincham a market borough. The area where our building is situated is now a conservation area.
Earl Of Stamford
The building was once owned by the Earl of Stamford who resided at the Great Hall (DUNHAM MASSEY) a few miles away. The Stamford Estates Office round the corner from our building was erected by an Isaac Worthington who was Solicitor and Agent to the Earl of Stamford for over 40 yrs. It was possibly built as a speculation and was initially sublet by him. If the Stamford Estate papers are correct (but we cannot be sure) our building could possibly have been built for himself. There is a date of 1748 where Isaac Worthington takes over the lease and there onwards up to the date of 1776. There after an Isaac Harrop takes over on the 8th August 1815. Isaac Harrop was Worthington’s Partner. The buildings have been owned by various people and we have been able to trace only a few. In 1858 Land which included No 7 was sold to a Martha Josepha Naylor.
In October 1895 the land and buildings of No7 were owned by William Cook & Blackshaw who in Nov 1895 sold on to Harris, Lindsell & Harris who are now known as Keoghs, Nichols, Linsell & Harris who are still in practice a little further down Market street. In August 1854 No 5 which we also own was purchased from the Earl of Stamford by a Gillian Nichols. No 5 was once said to be a Magistrates office. No 7 was used as the Bucklow Rural District Council offices at the end of the 19th century, here also the local metalworker, Hugh Wallis first set up his studio in 1900. Hugh Wallis was a leading figure in the Northern Art Workers Guild. He was a founder member of the Red Rose Guild and his work is highly prized. We are currently trying to acquire a piece of his work to display in reception. At No 16 Market Street the artist Helen Allingham lived there in 1849-62, her parents lived in our No 5 building. It has also been said that there was once a cricket/croquet lawn behind the building where the Multi Storey car park is now.
No 7 (grade 11 listed) was built in Flemish brick with a slate roof and gable chimney stack. It has a double depth Grand Central Staircase dating to 1730. There is a similar staircase in Dunham Massey Hall.
The Grand Staircase would have led to the Main Drawing room which would have been on the first floor. The over door just as you come into the main Foyer could have possibly been over the doorway into the Main Drawing Room (Dining Room). The head of the Goddess Diana (with two crescents) surrounded by corn which would mean “plenty” i.e. good food, plenty of food. The over door is known as a scrolled broken pediment, both over-doors are of a similar date to the Staircase or possibly a little later.
No 7 has a stone plinth, eaves cornice and parapet and a centrally placed four-panel door in the Market Street elevation with segmented over-light fluted three-quarter columns, it has a double-depth, grand central staircase plan and three storeys, with possibly later small wings to the rear of the building. The windows are mainly the original sashes with flat brick arches, stone sills, keystones and original glazing bars.
People have asked with it being such an old building “DO WE HAVE A GHOST?” Well yes we do (that’s if you believe of course). Our receptionist has seen a Grey Shadow that drifts past the Windows in the corridor near reception. A smell of highly scented perfume wafts down the Grand Staircase (you can imagine the lady coming down the staircase to greet her visitors in her Evening Gown). An Old Lady with a shawl over her shoulders has been seen briefly down in our Seminar room. But please don’t be alarmed. They are all very friendly! So if you see anything whilst on your visit here do please tell us.
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