Northumberland Thursday Doors

Thursday Doors Berwick2

More wonderful doors from the streets of this historic town. This is the Town Hall, built on the site of the Tollbooth. There have been several versions of the Tollbooth, one of which was burned down by marauding Scots, but most just deteriorated with time. In 1749, the Tollbooth collapsed, leaving the bell tower unstable. Joseph Dods, a local builder, demolished the old building and sent the bells to London to be recast. He submitted a design for the new building, but as he had no experience of such a grand project, the guild sent his plans to the Worralls, architects in London who designed St Martin’s in the Fields, the church on Trafalgar Square (before it was Trafalgar Square). Dods successfully submitted new plans, very similar to the Worralls’ design, in 1750. His name is inscribed in stone above the door, and the mayor’s name Joseph Fleming Maguire, is in black on white lettering across the portico supported by fourTuscan columns.

This is the impressive town hall, towering above the shops. To the side of the building there is a set of stocks, where wrongdoers were detained while the locals pelted them with rotten vegetables and fruit.
This is the town hall front door. It is immense. The brassware has been enthusiastically polished
Beautiful fanlight
Matching doors
Sadly in need of tender loving care.

By Dr Alfred Prunesquallor

Maverick doctor with 40 years experience, I reduced my NHS commitment in 2013. I am now enjoying being free lance, working where I am needed overseas. Now I am working in the UK helping with the current coronavirus pandemic.

5 replies on “Thursday Doors Berwick2”

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