Manchester City Council

Into the Unknown

Type Albert Hall Manchester into Google and you will get loads of entries for the Albert Hall, London, the Albert Halls, Bolton, Albert Square, Manchester, even Town Hall, Manchester, but almost nothing about the hundred year old gem on Peter Street.

For the decade or so that Brannigans occupied the ground floor, thousands of punters would have trooped through the place completely unaware of what was over their heads. I have to confess that until a few weeks ago I was equally unaware and so was everybody I spoke to about it. Anyway, this morning I pay a visit to said Albert Hall which occupies virtually the whole of the first floor of the Peter Street building, with a tiered balcony sweeping all the way round. In its heyday it seated two and a half thousand people, and even on this cloudy Monday morning, enormous windows flood the place with light allowing us to see that most of its original features are still intact. I don't know when it was last used, but it would be fantastic to see this beautiful hall restored and brought back to life.

I never lack variety in this job and so this afternoon, after a meeting with the Assistant Chief Executive (People) about how we recognise exceptional performance, it's back up to Crumpsall to George Halstead Court. There's a fair amount of sheltered accommodation in Crumpsall but George Halstead is unusual in that it is run by the City Council's ALMO (arms length management company) whereas all the rest are run by housing associations. There is an active tenants group which also includes tenants from a small group of nearby flats, bungalows and houses. They meet this afternoon and we always have at least one of the ward Councillors in attendance and today that's me. Can't stay in Crumpsall though as unfortunately have to be back at the Town Hall for a 4pm meeting, and then home to a stack of budget papers to be read.

There are 4 responses to “Into the Unknown”

  1. Curious Says:

    Ooh... tell us more... why were you visiting Albert Hall and are there any plans to bring it back into use? It's such a shame when fabulous buildings are neglected and the public don't have the opportunity to enjoy them...

  2. Larry Says:

    Albert Hall is believed to be haunted (not by Sir Richard!) and has appeared on TV's "Most Haunted". Keep up the good work.

  3. Manchester Bee Says:

    There is a forum with some pictures of the hall here:

    It's a pity that there aren't any concrete plans to restore that beautiful hall. (Unless of course, you will be announcing some.) It would be a nice addition to the theatre offering in Manchester, and a nice alternative to the main emphasis of pubs and bars for night time culture in our city.

    I would like to hear more about plans to restore other disused, yet ultimately stunning buildings in our city; for example, the old Fire Station by Piccadilly Station, or the large, disused building opposite the Minshull Street Crown Courts, with George Rex (GR) above the former entrance...

  4. Jim Says:

    Perhaps a better location for the Library Theatre?



The blog of the leader of Manchester City Council, Councillor Richard Leese.

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