A Guide to Manchester’s Best Historical Buildings

The city of Manchester is rich in heritage, culture and history. Famous for its architecture and strong links to the Industrial Revolution, Manchester has been the hub of important historical buildings for decades. Rich in variety, the history of Manchester has left its imprint on its tapestry. If you’re looking to immerse yourself in the history of Manchester and scout some of the city’s best architecture, then We Buy Any House have created a guide to Manchester’s best historical buildings.

1. Statue of Prince Albert:

Facing Manchester Town Hall is a memorial statue of Prince Albert and is one of many distinctive statues to stand in Manchester’s Alber Square.  The statue stands to celebrate Queen Victoria’s husband, who was a popular member of the royal family and held in high regard for his campaigning against anti-slavery.

2. John Rylands Library:

Housed within a Victorian Gothic building, John Rylands library is located on Deansgate in Manchester city center. John Rylands was of Manchester’s most popular textile manufacturers and became the first multimillionaire in the city. Opened in 1900, the building was made at the request of John Rylands’ widow and designed by Basil Champneys. Since then, the building has been enlarged seven times, and is now owned by the University of Manchester. Valuable and special collections have been movedto the John Rylands library, to allow members of the public access to them. The earliest artifact is the most notable manuscript of a New Testament text.

3. St.Mary’s Roman Catholic Church:

Hidden in a quiet cul-de-sac between Deansgate and Albert Square lies the hidden gem of this church. Impossible to miss due to its Victorian red brick that has been wedged between two Mancunian terraces, the exterior hides the elaborate interior.

The interior consists of Victorian era carvings, life sized statues of saintly figures and and a marble altar and is considered one of Manchester’s most religious buildings. The church was consecrated in 1794 and has been restored multiple times and still holds mass each weekday and at the weekends.

4. Barton Arcade:

Located in the heart of Manchester’s fashionable shopping district, Barton Arcade is hidden in a covered arcade that runs from St. Anne’s Square to Deansgate. Labelled one of the city’s best architectural sites, the arcade is hidden from street view by a façade, but once entered, its remarkability can’t be ignored. Built in the Victorian era, the U-shape building has a mystical and otherly feel and is one of the best-preserved examples of Victorian passion for arcades. The roof is an ornate domed construction made of glass, and inside are dozens of unique outlets.

5. Royal Exchange Theatre:

Standing exactly in the city center, the Royal Exchange Theatre has stood there since the late 18th century but has only been used as a theatre since the 1970s. Originally famous for the trading of textiles manufactured in the cotton mills, the Royal Exhange was saved and turned into a theatre and shopping centerfollowing the Blitz, when the trading hall was left badly damaged.

6. The Old Wellington Inn:

A standout for all Mancunians is The Old Wellington Inn. This half-timbered pub has creeped through history since it was built in 1552 and is the oldest building in Manchester. Originally belonging to inventor of early shorthand form John Byrom, the building became a licensed public house in 1830. The pub has served many purposes from makers of mathematical and optical instruments, to accommodating a fish tackle shop. The aftermath of the Manchester 1996 bomb left the building requiring £50,000 worth of repairs, but the building still lives on and delights customers with great food and real ale.

7. Manchester Cathedral:

After undergoing extensive restoration works due to the thedamage from the 1996 IRA bombing, the cathedral has stood in Manchester since medieval times, and holds artifacts that date back to the Saxon settlement in Manchester. Constructed in the late 15th century, the church was overseen by warden James Stanley, and nowadays welcomes visitors to attend their services and view the cathedrals interior.