Manchester City Council

Sports, leisure & the Arts Withington Conservation Area

Withington and its buildings today

The village centre of Withington is characterised by buildings with shops on the ground floor and one or two storeys of storage or offices above. Some are single storey and the average height is around two or three storeys.

The Withington Ale House, on the corner of Wilmslow Road and Burton Road, is the most striking building, on account of its clock tower, and it thus forms a focus at the southern end of the village. It is a mixed Gothic-style building, built in 1881 of brick with stone dressings. The forecourt is separated from the highway by railings supported on stone piers. The original railings have been replaced by plain steel horizontal poles, but the piers remain.

The Church of St Paul stands back from Wilmslow Road and has a tall, square tower with large pinnacles forming small spires. It is built of red brick, in simplified Norman style, and dates from 1841.

Nearby is the Withington Forge, built of brick in 1881, a symmetrical building with a large central coach-and-horse entrance, and accommodation on either side. The floor above would have been the blacksmith's residence.

The earliest surviving building in the conservation area is the Red Lion Inn on Wilmslow Road, lying to the south of the junction with Palatine Road and on the corner of Marriott Street. It dates from the 17th century, but with many later additions, and of particular interest are the horizontal sliding-sash windows.

At the northern end of the village, the National Westminster Bank is a stone building with much decoration, including a finely carved frieze and balustrade parapet wall at roof level. It was originally built as the Manchester and County Bank Ltd in the 19th century, as inscribed in the stone carving over the entrance. Adjoining the bank is the Methodist Church, a stone building in Gothic style.

At the northern extremity of the conservation area is the Withington Public Library, opened in 1927 and admirably constructed of stone to suit its corner site.

St Cuthbert's Church on Palatine Road was built in 1881 of red brick and terra cotta, with much moulded decoration around the rose windows on the gables.

The Conservation area also includes residential property, such as the Victorian terrace on Tatton View, situated off Tatton Grove at the south end of the designated area. There are also some large Victorian houses on Parsonage Road and Palatine Road, some of which have been converted to offices.

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