Hargreaves Building

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Hargreaves Building
Hargreave Building July 312010.jpg
Hargreaves Building
Location Chapel Street, Liverpool, Merseyside, England
Coordinates 53°24′26″N 2°59′39″W / 53.4073°N 2.9942°W / 53.4073; -2.9942Coordinates: 53°24′26″N 2°59′39″W / 53.4073°N 2.9942°W / 53.4073; -2.9942
OS grid reference SJ 340 905
Built 1859
Built for Sir William Brown
Architect Sir James Picton
Listed Building – Grade II
Designated 12 July 1966
Reference no. 1068348
Hargreaves Building is located in Liverpool
Hargreaves Building
Location in Liverpool

Hargreaves Building is a former bank in Chapel Street, Liverpool, Merseyside, England. It originated as the headquarters of the Brown Shipley Bank, continued as offices when the bank moved to London, was converted for use by the Liverpool Racquet Club after the Toxteth riots, and later became a hotel and restaurant.


The building is dated 1859, and was designed by the local architect Sir James Picton.[1] It was designed for the banker Sir William Brown as his headquarters. The name Hargreaves was the surname of Brown's son-in-law who ran his Liverpool business. The building continued to be the headquarters of the Brown Shipley Bank until 1888, when it moved to London.[2] It continued to be used as offices until the 1980s.[3]

Following the Toxteth riots of 1981, when their building in Upper Parliament Street was destroyed, the Liverpool Racquet Club were looking for new premises. At this time the lease for Hargreaves Building was available for sale, and the trustees of the Club negotiated a 150 year lease from Liverpool City Council.[2] The building was converted for the Club, and it re-opened on 20 May 1985. It contained a dining room, bar, and lounge, a billiards room, two squash courts, a small swimming pool, a gym and changing facilities, and rooms for overnight accommodation.[3] However, by 2001 the membership of the Club had declined and the lease was sold. It has since been converted into a hotel and restaurant named the Racquet Club Hotel and Ziba Restaurant.[2]


The building is constructed in ashlar, with a granite basement and a slate roof. It is in three storeys plus a basement.[4] The architectural style is that of a Venetian palazzo,[1] but employing Borromini's round-arched false-perspective window reveals of Palazzo Barberini, Rome. It has five bays facing Chapel Street, and seven bays facing Covent Garden. In the ground floor are round-headed windows flanked by paired columns.[4] Between the heads of the double-light windows are roundels containing carvings of people involved with the exploration of the Americas.[1] These include Christopher Columbus, Isabella I, Bermejo (a Spanish "adventurer"), Vespucci, Cortez, Queen Anacaona of Cuba, and Francisco Pizarro.[2] In the second floor are smaller two-light windows under round arches, separated by Ionic colonettes. The top floor contains even smaller two-light windows under round arches between panelled pilasters. Along the top of the building is a frieze and a cornice. The building is recorded in the National Heritage List for England as a Grade II listed building, having been designated on 12 July 1966.[4]

See also


  1. ^ a b c Pollard, Richard; Pevsner, Nikolaus (2006), Lancashire: Liverpool and the South-West, The Buildings of England, New Haven and London: Yale University Press, p. 313, ISBN 0-300-10910-5
  2. ^ a b c d A History of the Racquet Club, Racquet Club Hotel and Ziba Restaurant, archived from the original on 3 September 2011, retrieved 19 August 2011
  3. ^ a b Pye, Ken (2011), Discover Liverpool, Liverpool: Trinity Mirror Media, p. 78, ISBN 978-1-906802-90-5
  4. ^ a b c Historic England, "Hargreaves Building, Liverpool (1068348)", National Heritage List for England, retrieved 3 August 2013
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