|Aglio obtained the contract to decorate the interior of the original
Town Hall that had been built on the corner of King Street and Cross
Street in 1825. Details below.
Unfortunately there are no records of the work available and the
building was demolished in 1912 after a new Town Hall,
designed by Alfred
Waterhouse, was built in 1887 on a new site.
While he was in Manchester he was dealing with the aftermath of
problems with a court case involving Lord Kingsborough
and Sir Thomas Phillipps. The
outcome of all this was bankruptcy. This case was related to Agostino's
work on the Mexican Antiquities.
There are archived many letters sent from Lord Kingsborough to Aglio
at Manchester Town Hall.
While in Manchester, it seems that Aglio produced a number of
drawings and prints. These include 6
sketch portraits which are shown amongst others in the Gallery
Details of the Old Manchester Town Hall
The splendid building in Albert
Square is not Manchester's original Town Hall. In 1814, the Police
Commissioners of Manchester purchased property at the comer of King
Street and Cross Street with the intention of establishing the town's
administrative offices there.
This project took a full ten
years to get off the ground. For one thing, the period following the
Napoleonic War was an unsettled one. For another, the existing building
was used during 1819 by the military authority who remained in
Manchester after the Peterloo Massacre. They felt it in a bad state of
repair. The Commissioners decided to recondition the property and move
in without delay. But this proved impracticable and they agreed to build
an entirely new Town Hall - relying on their gasworks undertaking to
produce sufficient profits to finance the project. The main structure
was erected in 1825 at a cost of £40,000, a great deal more than
estimated, but was not completed until after it had been transferred by
the Commissioners to the Borough Council in 1843. In 1825, the population of
Manchester was around 120,000. This increased rapidly as did the
responsibilities and enterprises of the local Authority. The Town Hall
in King Street proved to be an inconvenient and inadequate public
building. As the operations of the authority extended, it had to hire
rooms in other buildings. In 1863 a sub-committee was appointed to
consider the erection of a bigger Town Hall.
The old Town Hall in King
Street served as the Central Reference Library until 1912 when it was
sold and demolished to make way for commercial development.
The façade was taken to Heaton
Park and erected where it now stands close to the lake.
Taken from a booklet about the New Town Hall