Sunday, 25 September 2016

Bryan Browning III The interior of Bourne Town Hall

Yesterday I had the opportunity to have a look around the interior of one of Browning's most interesting buildings: Bourne Town Hall.  After lying neglected in recent years after the council had moved out a group of locals have got together to restore the building and open it as a community arts  venue.  They have other plans too such as the restoration of the wooden cupola which burned down between the Wars, and the restoration of the original clock mechanism.  I really hope they succeed.  The town hall is a unique and clever building that deserves, in fact, needs to be preserved and used.  It would also be very good for the town.  Anyway this was my first visit and it was delightful.  There is one main space upstairs and that is the courtroom/council chamber.  It had many of its fittings intact.  I love the chairs with the town coat of arms on and the immense and beautifully lettered Benefaction Board.  To me it looks like the court room could be based upon the Inigo Jones's Queen's Chapel at St James's Palace. I could be wrong! Most lovely of all however was the Magistrates' room (parlour? retiring room?).  It still has some wonderful furniture left.  Quite atmospheric.  Downstairs is the former market hall known as a 'shambles'.  The plan is to use it as an exhibition/market space.  Anyway here are the images I took.

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