SE3033 : The Grand Arcade, Vicar Lane

taken 2 years ago, near to Leeds, Great Britain

The Grand Arcade, Vicar Lane
The Grand Arcade, Vicar Lane
Note the subtle variations in style and choice of materials compared with the Briggate facade Link .
The Grand Arcade, Leeds
One of a series of similar arcades developed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to replaces the cramped yards of the post-medieval city.

The Grand Arcade was built in 1897 and features extensive use of terracotta dressings and decoration, including colour-glazed elements. Originally two full arcades ran between Briggate and Vicar Lane, but part of the Northern arcade was converted into the Tower Cinema in around 1920, and the eastern end of this was also later enclosed, leaving the current situation of one long arcade between Briggate and Vicar Lane and a cross arcade leading onto Merrion Street.

The main facades are characterised by the large semicircular openings over the arcade entrances, the bays above which are infilled with coloured glazed decorative features and inscriptions. The two facades are distinguished by having different treatments of these panels, colonnades facing Briggate and Oculi facing Vicar Lane. The Briggate facade also carries the date 1897 in glazed work in the central gable. Facing Briggate, the main material is brickwork with paler terracotta dressing, whereas facing Vicar Lane the whole facade is pink terracotta with darker dressings.

The interior of the arcades is relatively plain with simple pointed arch trusses supporting the glass roof, and shopfronts with relatively plain decoration. A feature of the arcade is the mechanical clock at the Vicar Lane end by local clock manufacturer Potts.

The arcade is Listed Grade II.
Architectural terracotta and faience in Leeds
The terms terracotta and faience can be used more or less interchangeably for the structural and decorative ceramic material used extensively on buildings from about 1880 to the 1930s. Faience is more generally applied to the type which has high glaze, often multicoloured, as featured for example on The Grand Arcade, and The Three Legs pub.

The material is similar to the denser bricks developed in the 19th century and has a generally impermeable surface compared with softer stones and common bricks. Compared with stone, where every stone had to be individually carved (even when done mechanically), terracotta decoration could be produced in numbers from a single mould.

The presence of large numbers of buildings using the material in Leeds is connected with the fact that one of the major British manufacturers was the Burmantofts pottery and brickworks in the eastern suburbs of the City. Around 1900 Burmantoft developed a very pale version, in imitation of white marble, which was given the trade name 'Marmo'. As well as being used for buildings in the more 'Rococo' style of the early 1900s (e.g. Scottish Union and National Insurance Company building on Park Row) it was much favoured in the Art Deco period for major cinema and shop frontages.
Listed Buildings and Structures
Listed buildings and structures are officially designated as being of special architectural, historical or cultural significance. There are over half a million listed structures in the United Kingdom, covered by around 375,000 listings.
Listed status is more commonly associated with buildings or groups of buildings, however it can cover many other structures, including bridges, headstones, steps, ponds, monuments, walls, phone boxes, wrecks, parks, and heritage sites, and in more recent times a road crossing (Abbey Road) and graffiti art (Banksy 'Spy-booth') have been included.

In England and Wales there are three main listing designations;
Grade I (2.5%) - exceptional interest, sometimes considered to be internationally important.
Grade II* (5.5%) - particularly important buildings of more than special interest.
Grade II (92%) - nationally important and of special interest.

There are also locally listed structures (at the discretion of local authorities) using A, B and C designations.

In Scotland three classifications are also used but the criteria are different. There are around 47,500 Listed buildings.
Category A (8%)- generally equivalent to Grade I and II* in England and Wales
Category B (51%)- this appears generally to cover the ground of Grade II, recognising national importance.
Category C (41%)- buildings of local importance, probably with some overlap with English Grade II.

In Northern Ireland the criteria are similar to Scotland, but the classifications are:
Grade A (2.3%)
Grade B+ (4.7%)
Grade B (93%)

…read more at wikipedia LinkExternal link
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SE3033, 2759 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Thursday, 12 April, 2018   (more nearby)
Wednesday, 18 April, 2018
Geographical Context
Historic sites and artefacts  Business, Retail, Services  City, Town centre 
Date (from Tags)
Period (from Tags)
Late 19th Century 
Material (from Tags)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SE 3041 3385 [10m precision]
WGS84: 53:48.0042N 1:32.3867W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SE 3043 3387
View Direction
Southwest (about 225 degrees)
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Other Tags
Grade II Listed  Shopping Arcade 

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Image Type (about): geograph 
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