The Moot Hall, Briggate. by Percy Robinson. Source: Robinson's Relics of Old Leeds (1896). [Click on image to enlarge it.]

Accompanying text

A little above Kirkgate end stood the Moot Hall, in front of which were the stocks and pillory. The date of the first erection is not known, but it had fallen somewhat into decay at the beginning of the nineteenth century, and in the Corporation records we find the following: — "5th June, 1710. Whereas there is a design to repair and alter the Moot Hall for the conveniency of the reception of the West Riding Justices, who have ugreed to keep the General Quarter Sessions for the West Riding here. It is agreed by this Court that half the charge of altering and enlarging the hall shall be paid by the Treasurer of the Corporation Stock, providing the half do not exceed the sum of £70; and that Mr. Mayor, eleven aldermen, and five assistants, be managers and inspectors of the repairs on the part of the Corporation, and make their report at the first Court after the finishing of the repairs." This building was further graced, in 1713, by a white marble statue of Queen Anne, which was erected at the expense of Alderman Milner.. . . This statue, on the demolition of the Moot Hall in 1825, was removed to the Corn Exchange, at the top of Briggate. It has now found a permanent resting-place in the City Art Gallery.

Briggate was the scene of all the great public festivals and rejoicings, and such occasions were not few, for the inhabitants appear to have been always ready to avail themselves of any excuse for a feast. Many of these celebrations are chronicled, and it is interesting to compare them with our ideas of public rejoicing at the present day. [20]

Formatting and color correction by George P. Landow. [You may use these images without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the Internet Archive and the University of California and (2) link your document to this URL or cite the Victorian Web in a print one. Click on the photograph for a larger picture.]


Robinson, Percy. Relics of Old Leeds. Leeds: Percy Robinson, 1896; London: B. T. Batsford. Internet Archive version of a copy in the University of California Library. Web. 23 January 2013

Last modified 23 January 2013