Talk on the grand NY county hall

North Yorkshire County Hall in Northallerton.
North Yorkshire County Hall in Northallerton.
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Many people will have passed the impressive entrance gates to North Yorkshire’s County Hall opposite the railway station in Northallerton.

Some, perhaps whiling away the time waiting for the level crossing to open, will have spotted the splendid Baroque frontage of the building – which gives the impression of a country house at the end of its drive.

Few people, however, will have been inside and had a chance to truly appreciate its architectural qualities and the story behind its construction.

County Hall as an institution is a result of the Local Government Act of 1888 and, as a building, is the work of Walter Brierley in 1903.

As such, it is a fine example of form and function coming together, where the style was successfully adapted over several decades to reflect the changing functions of the County Council.

Many original documents relating to the hall are now preserved in the County Records Office so the story of how it came to be, and its location, can be told using documents from the records office itself, together with the extensive information amassed for Heritage Open Days in 2007.

County Hall’s fascinating history will feature in a special talk by Linda Smith, starting at 12.30pm on Friday, November 30 at the Record Office in Malpas Road, Northallerton.

Linda is Rural Archaeologist with North Yorkshire County Council and has worked in County Hall for 20 years so her interest in the building stems from both familiarity and history.

The lunchtime talk is organised by North Yorkshire County Record Office in conjunction with Northallerton & District Local History Society.

Admission is £2 on the day, and places should be booked in advance with John Sheehan of the Society by telephoning 01609-771878 or by email at jgsheehan@btinternet.com.