Saturday 28 April 2012

Council House

The foundation stone for the Council House was laid by Joseph Chamberlain in 1874. Work was completed in 1879 at a cost of £163,000.

The building was designed by Yeoville Thomason, the same architect who built the Museum and Art Gallery behind in Chamberlain Square in 1885. The building is actually used by the council to this day. It is a grade II listed building.

Both Chamberlain Square and Victoria Square surround the Council House and the backdrop of the nearby town hall adds to the grandeur.
The Tourism Office and entrance to the library lead off Chamberlain Square and the town hall sits impressively separating the two where the squares join. 

Victoria Square in front of the Council House with its impressive water fountains and the River Godess by Dhruva Mistry (1993) is joined by the Iron Man by Antony Gormley (1993). Both are watched by a stern Queen Victoria who keeps her guard over the square.

The memorial in Chamberlain Square is dedicated to John H Chamberlain (1880) and a rather casual looking statue of Thomas Attwood (Birmingham banker and MP) reading, sits on the steps of the square. The River Godess is often referred to by Brummies as the 'Floozie in the Jacuzzi'

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