HRH Princess Royal
Visits Iconic Building During Trip To Liverpool
THE 1st phase of major restoration work at
St George's Hall Liverpool has been given the Royal seal of approval by HRH
The Princess Royal.
Staff and visitors at the landmark building were this week treated to a rare
Royal visit by Princess Anne. It coincided with the completion of the first
of five areas of the historic Minton tiled floor which have been earmarked
for restoration work.
Widely regarded as one of the finest neo-classical buildings in the world,
St George's Hall Liverpool is also a favourite building of Princess Anne's
bother, HRH Prince Charles.
Princess Anne was given a tour of the Grade I Listed building by General
Manager Alan Smith, and the Lord Mayor of Liverpool Councillor Tony
Concepcion. Together they discussed the restoration project, which is the
first major repair to the Great Hall since the iconic venue opened in 1854.
St George's Hall Liverpool is the world's best example of an encaustic tiled
floor. But over time, five of the Great Circles of the tiled floor have
become badly worn and colours have dramatically faded and have been
identified as the key areas for restoration.
The 5 Great Circles are located around the perimeter of the Great Hall and
form part of the natural walkway round the Great Hall. They were originally
the route into the Crown Court, therefore they have become severely worn
Work on the 1st area is now complete, and Princess Anne was
full of praise about the end result. The faded tiles have been replaced with
exact replicas, this means the striking and intricate designs have been
brought back to life with brilliant colour. The original tiles have been
retained and will be displayed to the public in the St George's Hall
Heritage Centre. Work on the other four areas will follow in 2016 once funds
have been secured.
The 1st phase of restoration has cost £73,000, which has been raised by the
Trustees of St George's Hall and The Friends of St George's Hall, with the
support of Liverpool City Council. Further fundraising is now required to
continue with the remaining four phases which could take up to 12 months to
Alan Smith, General Manager of St George's Hall Liverpool, commented:-
"Our iconic venue is very much a great asset of Liverpool, so it is vital
that restoration work is done with great care to protect and preserve its
heritage for future generations to enjoy. The Princess Royal was extremely
enthusiastic and encouraged by the quality and expertise required to replace
the tiles. She fully understood the intricacies of the project ahead and
wished us well with the remaining phases. It has cost £73,000 to create the
template and produce the distinctive Minton tiles to repair the first
circle, this has been raised through the efforts of our dedicated
supporters. However, we have a long way to go to reach our target and raise
the funds required to complete the overall restoration project. We hope our
visitors continue to support us in our efforts to maintain one of the City's
most important architectural gems."
While at St George's Hall, Princess Anne also took time to see the Poppies -
Weeping Window display. The Princess Royal's visit was part of a wider trip
to Liverpool, during which she also opened a new building at The Walton
Experts Craven Dunnill Jackfield Ltd from Shropshire, who specialise in
encaustic tile manufacturer, have been commissioned to create the bespoke
tile. They will be installed by world expert restorer of Minton tiled
floors, Brian Joyce from Maw and Co. Ltd, who has worked across the globe on
some of the biggest Minton restoration projects.
During the 20th Century, the Minton floor was only shown 6 times. Since St
George's Hall Liverpool reopened in 2007, the floor has now been showcased 7
times in just 9 years.