Obrázky stránek
PDF
ePub

thousand and an halff of breades, to serve the parish churches then in London, only four excelled the Leeds withall, 8s. 4d.”

church in length; and that of two-thirds of the London New disputes having arisen concerning the revenues churches, the length was less than the width of that of the Church of Leeds, an arbitrator in 1596 gave an which he was describing. The roof he describes as award, by which the tithes and other emoluments were being “ supported by three rows of solid pillars of the divided between Christ Church College on the one Gothic order. In the nave of the church are four aisles hand, and the Vicar on the other. But no sooner was (which is one more than usual), which run from the this matter settled, than a much more entangled question cross aisle to the west end, where is a stately font: 'tis arose respecting the advowson : two ministers were gilt and painted, and stands upon an ascent of three presented at the same time by rival claimants to the steps, surrounded with rails and banisters. The body advowson ; and the celebrated Lord Bacon, as Lord I of the church is very well pewed with English oak. Chancellor or Lord Keeper, was to decide between the .... Upon the north and east are spacious galleries parties, which he did in favour of the parishioners of wainscot, wrought with variety of work. . ... At generally. Passing over the troubled period of Charles I., the meeting of the great middle aisle, with the large we find that in 1650 there was a project on foot to cross aisle, the steeple is founded upon four prodigiously subdivide the populous parish of Leeds; to convert large pillars and arches. .... Against one of these some of the chapels into parish churches, and to erect pillars stood the pulpit in the days of yore, when there new ones at more convenient places, which were to be were no seats in the nave of the church ; for before the endowed out of the public purse. There were at that Reformation there were no pews or different apartments date two Churches in Leeds—the parish Church of allowed, but the whole body of the church was comSt. Peter, and the Church of St John, which had mon, and the assembly promiscuous or intermixed in recently been built and endowed at the sole expense of the more becoming postures of kneeling or standing. Mr. John Harrison, one of the inhabitants. St. John's The patron of the church was the only layman who was to form a second parish church, and was to have was permitted to have a seat within the bars or particertain districts assigned to it as a parish ; the chapelry tion of the chancel from the nave of the church, in the of Hunslet, a small and poor one, was to constitute a time of Divine service. ... This spacious quire was, parish ; as was also the chapelry of Holbeck ; Beeston in the days of darkness, cantoned into many distinct was to form a parish ; Wortley, Bramley, Armley, and cells or chapels by several walls, as is evident by the Farnley, were together to form a parish; and Ileaul- breaches in the capitals and pedestals of the pillars.” ingley and Allerton were to form a parish. This project does not seem to have been carried out. Thoresby continues his account of ecclesiastical mat

New St. Peter's, AND THE OTHER CHURCHES. ters, at Leeds, down to the year 1724. As the two The old structure--the venerable remnant of past churches of St. Peter and St. Jolin became wholly ages, patched up from time to time, to maintain someinadequate to supply the wants of the inhabitants, the thing like efficiency-was at length brought to the end landowners and principal inhabitants raised a fund for of its days. It was pulled down in 1838. Consequent building a new church and establishing a minister; on certain ecclesiastical changes in the parish, a new and in 1721, the first stone of this new building was St. Peter's Church was resolved on; and the architeclaid. Since Thoresby's time, the gradual extension tural skill of Mr. Chantrell has been put in requisition of population in Leeds has led to the erection of a to produce the new structure, which was finished in large number of new churches ; while chapels, belong- 1810. It is one of the best among the modern speciing to the various Dissenting bodies, have fully kept mens of the pointed style—in that variety which is pace with those attached to the establishment. What designated the later Decorated. The nave and the may be the number at the present day, we cannot say ; chancel are so planned as to form one clear vista, 160 but in 1839, there were forty churches and chapels feet in length, 28 wide, and 47 high. The side aisles within the town, "affording sittings for nearly fifty are a little lower than the nave, and about 16 feet wide. thousand of the inhabitants.

A transept crosses between the nave and choir, having In the view of St. Peter's Church, as given by a tower at its north end; and there is a sort of addiThoresby, about 1720, we have a building evidently tional north-aisle, which forms ante-chapels east and owing its form to the contributions of many successive west of the tower. The altar is raised several feet ages. It was very oblong, with short transepts, and above the level of the church, and is ascended by broad side aisles. The windows belonged to many different steps. The transept tower rises to a height of about styles. In the Ducatus Leodiensis, Thoresby tells us 130 feet. Taken as a whole, this church is, both inthat the old Church of St. Peter " is a very spacious ternally and externally, one of the greatest ornaments and strong fabric, an emblem of the church militant, of the town. black but comely, being of great antiquity ; it doth not A bold and decided step has been taken, in great pretend to the mode of Reformed Architecture, but is part through the instrumentality of the present vicar, strong and useful.” He states the length at 165 feet, Dr. Hook, to make the church arrangements of Leeds breadth 97, height of the nave 51, and height of the more conformable to the wants of a large and increasing tower 96. He further states, that among the 106 population. The parish of St. Peter's was a very spa

It is a

cious one; and the extremities grew out so far and St. James', was built originally for and by Dissenters ; wide from the mother church, that an efficient central but passed by purchase into the hands of the Estabcontrol over the whole became difficult. Dr. Fawcett, lishment. A few of the modern churches are handthe late vicar, died in 1837 ; the same year witnessed some structures ; and some of them are distinguished the election of Dr. Hook in his place; the next follow for their large size : three of them will accommodate ing year was marked by the pulling down of the old two thousand five hundred persons each. Perhaps the church, preparatory to building a new one. In 1839, most striking of the modern places of worship, after the perpetual advowson of the vicarage of Leeds be- new St. Peter's, is the Unitarian Chapel of Mill-Hill, came vested in a body of trustees for the benefit of the (Cut, No. 3) opened at the end of 1848. parishioners: the vicar being chosen on each vacancy very elegant specimen of the perpendicular style. The by the trustees. In 1844, an Act of Parliament was chapel is divided in the interior into a nave and two obtained, sanctioning the division of the parish of Leeds aisles by columns and pointed arches. Owing to the into two or more parishes. The new church was peculiar form of the ground, there is a transept on one opened in 1840, and the sittings, amounting in number side only-the west. A small portion of the length to 1650, were all, with the exception of one pew, is separated, at one end, by lofty arches and columns, thrown open to the parishioners at large. This one to form a chancel and two yestries. The carved roof parish contained in 1841 about 150,000 inhabitants, is open to the body of the chapel. Externally the and about 21,000 acres of land ; and it hence became details of the Perpendicular style are well carried out, desirable that such a large body of inhabitants should and constitute it an ornament to the town. The chapel have more than one parish church: the remaining form instead of the church is developed in this particuepiscopal places of worship having more the character lar--that there is no other steeple or tower than of chapels than churches. Arrangements were accord- such as is formed by the pinnacled gable-end of the ingly made in the Act for establishing the Parishes of nave and transept. There is also a new and very St. Peter Leeds, St. John Leeds, St. George Leeds, handsome Independent Chapel in East Parade. Holy Trinity Leeds, St. Stephen Kirkstall, St. Mark Woodhouse, and Wortley. This list, however, by no

THE PUBLIC BUILDINGS GENERALLY. means comprises all the churches of Leeds; the former parish of Leeds included the townships of Armley, The educational buildings of Leeds are of not much Beeston, Bramley, Chapel Allerton, Farnley, Heading- mark or feature as architectural ornaments. The wellley, Holbeck, Hunslet, Potter Newton, Oldcoates, wisher to the little denizens of the town hears with Osmondthorpe and Wortley; and these, with the town pleasure of the day-schools, the factory-schools, the of Leeds itself, contained, in 1844, twenty-one churches, infant-schools, the Sunday-schools, and industrialbesides the chapels belonging to the various Dissenting schools; many of which are not the less useful for denominations.

being situated in nooks and corners, where external The church which John Harrison built in the reign adornment is out of the question. There is one school, of Charles I., and known as St. John's, appeared at a however, whose recent erection and architectural beauty period when church architecture had fallen to a very claim for it a marked superiority over all the others. low ebb. Whitaker, who was not indisposed to give all This is the Industrial School, situated in Burmantofts, the credit he could to Leeds, found it difficult to apply and opened in 1848. The grounds occupy six acres, any terms of praise to St. John's Church. He desig- and the ground and the building are said to have cost nates it a most unhappy specimen of taste, built in no less than £16,000. The building belongs to the defiance of all authority and example, with two aisles (once and again) popular Elizabethan style. There only, having a single row of columns up the middle. is a front of great length, nearly 300 feet, with a highlyThe windows are copies of two distinct and rather enriched centre, comprising bay windows, octagonal remote periods; the tower is placed almost at one turrets, triangular parapets and gables, ornamental angle of the west end; the east end has two parallel chimneys, and the other characteristics of the style. windows of equal rank and consequence; there is no The sides, back front, and contiguous buildings, are all change or break in the arches to indicate a choir, in in architectural harmony with the principal front. lieu of which a kind of clumsy screen is thrown across, The building is so arranged as to furnish school-rooms so as to intersect one of the arches. “Let the archi- for four hundred scholars, besides kitchens, diningtect sleep in peace," says the indignant Doctor. rooms, chapel, dormitories, wash-house, laundry, tailor's

The Trinity Church, built about 1724, and endowed shop, shoemaker's shop, store-rooms, master's residence, by a nephew of John Harrison, was the third of the teachers' apartments, &c.—all on a very complete Leeds churches a sort of adaptation of the Doric scale. style to the purposes of a Christian church. Seventy With respect to the schools for the middle classes, years afterwards, the Rev. Miles Atkinson provided no they have the usual stamp of brick-and-mortar "reless a sum than £10,000 for building a fourth church spectability ;" but Leeds is not without some of those -St. Paul's. The body of this church is a somewhat ancient establishments whose history is interesting, tame imitation of Greco-Roman examples, but the whether the fabric be gorgeous or humble. The chief steeple is not without beauty. A fifth church, that of of these is the Grammar School. This school owed its

[graphic][ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors]

origin to the Rev. William Sheafield, who, in 1551, | about eighty years ago, is one of the most extensive in bequeathed certain estates to trustees, " to the use and the north of England, and occupies a room of great for the finding sustentation and living of one honest beauty and magnitude. Most of the others are of and substantial learned man, to be a schoolmaster, to small extent. The Philosophical and Literary Society, teach and instruct freely all such young scholars, the Literary Institution, and various other institutions youths, and children, as shall come and resort to him for the cultivation of literature, science, and the fine from time to time: to be taught, instructed, and arts, hold their respective meetings periodically, and informed, in such a school-house as shall be found, exert their usual refining influence on such of the erected, and builded, by the parishioners of the said inhabitants as can avail themselves of such advantages. town and parish of Leeds.” The townsmen pur. The Philosophical Hall, where lectures are delivered chased a site, and built a school-room; and bequests and museum curiosities deposited, is a handsome strucand purchases at subsequent periods gradually raised ture in Park Row, and has been the scene of many the annual income of the charity (which in 1553 was pleasant meetings of an intellectual character. The worth only £4 13s. 4d. annual rental) to a considerable Leeds Zoological and Botanical Gardens, situated at sum. One of the bequests, made by Sir William Headingley, north-west of the town, were opened in Ermystead in 1555, was contingent on the school being 1840. They occupy a slight hollow between rising made open to “ all such as shall repair thereto, without grounds, and have been laid out with much taste, and taking any money more or less for teaching, saving at a considerable expenditure. But, alas ! Fortune of one penny of every scholar, to enter his name in has frowned on the scheme. Whether the gardens are the master's book, if the scholar have a penny; and if too far away from the people, or the people are indifnot, to enter and to continue freely without paying," ferent to the gardens, or the proprietors expended too The number of scholars is usually about a hundred; much money, or require too large an interest on the they have a title to compete for one of Lady Betty money actually laid out, whatever may be the cause, Hastings' Exhibitions at Queen's College, Oxford, and these gardens have recently become private property, four scholarships at Magdalen College, Cambridge. to be attached, as pleasure-grounds, to a neighbouring

Leeds bas a fair sprinkling of libraries and literary mansion; so that it depends on the liberality of the societies. One of the libraries, founded by Dr. Priestley new proprietor to give or withhold public access to the

[graphic][ocr errors][merged small]

gardens. “ Pity 'tis, 'tis true!". Leeds should bestow spent £43,000 in the erection of a gaol, for the safe an inquiring glance on the three magnificent public custody and discipline of 284 prisoners, it should not parks at Manchester. Wool should not allow cotton be thought unreasonable to spend less than one half of to outbrave it in these matters.

that sum for the purpose of so training up 400 of the Leeds has the usual variety of public buildings,' youthful dependents upon parish bounty, as to prepare though hardly, perhaps, its fair share of ornamental them to become useful and independent members of structures. There are hospitals and almshouses, assem- society." bly-rooms, concert-rooms, music-halls, and a theatre ; The Markets--such as the Central Market, the New infirmaries, dispensaries, houses of recovery, and so and Old Shambles, the South or Leather Market, (see forth. Its municipal and judicial buildings, too, are of Cut, No. 4,) the Free Market, and the Corn Market the customary character; and its barracks, like all other exhibit a mixture of the new and the old forms given barracks, encroach on a very large area of ground. to such places. The Central Market, about twenty We must, however, make especial mention of the new years old, is a good example of the modern improveGaol, opened in 1847, perhaps the largest; most com- ments which have been brought to bear in such matprehensive, and most costly of all the new buildings in ters : its Grecian front, spacious shops, galleries, and Leeds,-always excepting the railway works, which, avenues of stalls, enable it to take rank among the best of wherever they begin, or whithersoever they tend, take modern markets. The Free Market occupies what was the lead of everything else as gold-eaters. Yet it is once the Vicar's Croft, and affords a convenient locale somewhat melancholy to think that the best buildings for the cows, pigs, fish, and vegetables that used to in any town should be the gaols. When shall we see throng the almost impassable Briggate. The Corn Exthe day when schools will cost more than prisons, and change is one of the best features in this last-named boy-educators receive higher remuneration than man- street: between the columns of the entrance is a statue punishers? It was aptly observed in the ' Leeds Mer- of Queen Anne, which once occupied a place in the cury,' (which can hardly be named without calling to front of the Old Moot Hall, pulled down about twenty mind the eminent services rendered to Leeds and its

years ago. neighbourhood by the late editor, Mr. Edward Baines), of the purely commercial buildings of Leeds, by far while speaking of the Industrial Schools (described in the most important are the Cloth Halls; to be described a recent paragraph), and of certain complaints which in a later page.

in a later page. The Banking-houses of modern times have been made of its costliness :-" While we have often present rather striking architectural features; and

I

Leeds has a few such : but one of the best structures each end. The footpaths are on the outside of the two at Leeds is the Commercial Buildings, (see Cut, No.5,) suspending ares, and the carriageway passes between situated at the southern end of Park Row. It has three them. Each of the suspending arcs is cast in six parts. fronts, to as many streets, and a fourth front adjoining The cast-iron transverse beams which support the roada Cemetery, so as to be completely isolated. The archi- way are suspended at intervals of about five feet. The tect has selected a Grecian design. On the ground roadway is of timber, with iron guard-plates on each floor is an entrance-hall, in which ''Change' is held side; and upon the top of the planking are also laici daily. On the right of the entrance is a news or malleable iron bars, ranging longitudinally for the wheelreading-room, nearly seventy feet long, with a propore tracks, and transversely for the horse-tracks. tionate width and height, divided longitudinally into This was the second bridge of the kind; the first three compartments by ranges of Corinthian columns. being the Monk Bridge at Leeds, constructed by Mr. Adjoining the news-room is a committee-room, in which Leather in 1827. This Monk Bridge is of greater newspapers and maps are preserved for the inspection length than the Hunslet Bridge, owing to the vicinity of the subscribers, and in which some of the business of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal to the river Aire ; of the 'establishment is carried on. On the left of the but so far as regards the suspension arch itself, the entrance-hall is the coffee-room of the hotel and tavern, Hunslet Bridge is much the larger. The Monk Bridge which is included in the building. Distributed in has a suispension arch over the river, two land-arches various parts are offices for brokers, &c. On the first- over the footpaths, and an elliptical arch over the canal. floor are dining-rooms, concert-rooms, and various other Since the introduction of this new system by Mr. apartments. The area of ground covered by the esta- Leather, it has been extensively adopted in bridgeblishment is said to be more than 1,300 square yards, building in various parts of the kingdom. and the expense to have been nearly £35,000. The Wellington Bridge, built of stone ; Victoria Bridge, most beautiful part of the building is the staircase, also of stone ; and Crown Point Bridge, built of iron,which occupies a circular hall upwards of thirty feet in are three other bridges which cross the Aire in or near diameter, crowned with a panelled dome, and lighted Leeds, and erected in modern times. But the bridge through stained glass.

which is more particularly associated with the history We will not ask the reader to dive into the dark and of the town, is the old or original bridge. This bridge dirty alleys, which lie in close proximity to the better evidently marks the site of a very ancient line of passage. buildings of the town ; nor will we treat him as if he Whitaker thinks that there was a Roman road along the were a Commissioner of Sewers, destined to study the site of the present Briggate, and that there was a ferry "world underground." The Leeds and Thirsk Rail- over the Aire where the bridge now stands. No direct way will, indirectly, be the means of providing Leeds notice, however, of a bridge at that spot has been met with a new and abundant supply of water, from with earlier in date than 1376; at which time there was springs near the Bramhope Tunnel on that line. The a chapel on the bridge, where mass was said. After Waterworks Company have taken up the matter ; and the Reformation this chapel was used as a school-house, Leeds may, perhaps, have occasion to regard this as a in which capacity it was occupied for nearly two cenblessing

turies ; it was converted into a warehouse in 1728 ;

and was finally pulled down in 1760, on occasion of THE BRIDGES, THE FACTORIES, THE CHIMNEYS, THE

the widening of the bridge. The traffic on this bridge

is said to be scarcely exceeded by that on any bridge SMOKE,

out of London. The river Aire, we have said, winds through Leeds Before Leeds became a centre of railway operations, in a direction nearly east and west. It is crossed by the town was supplied with fuel from many places in bridges, which increase in number as the population the immediate neighbourhood. Railways have, howand commerce of the town advance. Leeds has had ever, opened up a new and abundant supply; and it the credit of introducing a bridge of very curious con- became a question simply of relative cost, whether the struction ; from the plan of Mr. Leather, an engineer, near or the distant collieries shall supply most fuel for whose name is connected with many public works in the hundreds of blazing furnaces in this busy, sooty, the same town. It is a suspension-bridge over the river smoke-enveloped town. Aire, at Hunslet, on what has sometimes been called This last expression, however, reminds us that there the bow-and-string principle. Instead of chains being is a little act of justice yet to be rendered to Leeds. employed as the chief means of suspension, as in ordi- Whether or not smoke can be banished, Leeds has at Dary cases, there are two strong cast-iron arcs, which any rate been among the foremost to make the attempt ; span over the whole space between the two abutments. and if a dark cloud of carbon still hovers over the These arcs spring from below the level of the roadway, town, the light of modern science has not been wantbut rise at the centre considerably above it; and from ing among its townsmen, so far as experiments for them the transverse beams which support the platform the removal of this cloud are concerned. That smoke of the bridge are suspended by malleable iron rods. is rich unconsumed carbon, ready to pour out its heat The suspending arch is about a hundred and fifty feet and light if properly managed, has been long known, span ; and there is also a small land-arch of stone at and has been frequently elucidated by Dr. Arnott in

« PředchozíPokračovat »