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St Mary's Guildhall

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Rob Orland
Historic Coventry
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1 of 33  Tue 18th Sep 2012 7:43pm  
Webmaster: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:1358

I wonder how many of you, like myself, are a little confused and disappointed that we, the public, are not allowed access to our fine Guildhall all year round? If it was an outdoor attraction then maybe I could see the point, but after mid-October each year, until the following Easter, we can no longer wander in there to marvel at the splendour of the best example of a Medieval Guildhall that this country has to offer. Decades ago the public could access it all year round, but in this so called enlightened age we now cannot! And yet the hall is still kept heated over the winter so it can be used for weddings, etc. - the only apparent saving being on the extremely knowledgeable guides, who take such pleasure in teaching visitors about our history. So many visitors to our city walk around the ruins of the Old Cathedral every day, and it's only a few short steps from there into the Guildhall Courtyard as a natural continuation of their tour of by far the loveliest part of old Coventry. I hope that someone with influence will read this topic and put this shortcoming right.
St Mary's Guildhall
morgana
the secret garden
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2 of 33  Tue 18th Sep 2012 8:40pm  
Member: Joined Nov 2011  Total posts:2216

I agree Rob such a shame to hide it away seeing your photos, it's a beautiful part of our history, I just think what a waste of public money, we pay for it but can't see it. I was born here and have lived here all my life and only ever seen the inside of it from this forum, as when years ago I ever passed it the doors were mainly closed, on occasions when open I thought it wasn't for public viewing, only for staff, not well advertised back then. Knowing now I could go in, I now can't as it will be closed.
St Mary's Guildhall
dougie
from Wigan
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3 of 33  Wed 19th Sep 2012 10:57am  
Member: Joined Dec 2010  Total posts:197

First, I agree with you, it should be open the full year, Rob, Thumbs up but it should only be the winter visitors to the City that miss out seeing the inside of the Guildhall as the door is open for six months of the year, enough time for anyone that lives in or around Coventry to go. Was very surprised no one there to welcome me, it made me feel that I shouldn't be there, also you just walked in free, plus I didn't even see a donation plate
St Mary's Guildhall
NeilsYard
Coventry
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4 of 33  Wed 19th Sep 2012 11:07am  
Member: Joined Aug 2010  Total posts:1859

Its a truly stunning place and hidden Gem. Never get tired of wandering in there. A friend of my wife was married there a few years ago and it was a magical location to use. The undercroft cafe/restaurant is also under-used. They do not market it enough - tourists would love it! My dad sadly passed away 9 years ago Sad but he played on the balcony (next to the suits of armour!) as a boy in the Coventry School of Music and it was fantastic to watch him sworn in as a Coventry magistrate after he retired in the Guildhall.
St Mary's Guildhall
dougie
from Wigan
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5 of 33  Thu 20th Sep 2012 11:18am  
Member: Joined Dec 2010  Total posts:197

On 19th Sep 2012 11:07am, NeilsYard said: The undercroft cafe/restaurant is also under-used. They do not market it enough - tourists would love it!
As you say Neils Yard, they don't market the Guildhall or the Cafe good enough, even from the road outside you can walk past without knowing about them
St Mary's Guildhall
Rob Orland
Historic Coventry
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Thread starter
6 of 33  Thu 20th Sep 2012 10:07pm  
Webmaster: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:1358

I see your point Dougie, but personally I'd like to be able to pop into the Guildhall any time of the year, even though I'm local. There are a couple of signs in the nearby streets pointing the way, but I suppose it would be good if the place was given more of a mention as a historic attraction in the local media. There's rarely anyone in that entrance just waiting for visitors to pop in - but if you go up those stairs into the Great Hall, you'll always get a welcome and a chat if you like. There's a donation box up there too, if you have too much change burning a hole in your pocket!! Wink
St Mary's Guildhall
Dreamtime
Perth Western Australia
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7 of 33  Mon 28th Jan 2013 5:27pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:3160

What an utter shame to see such a building deteriorating in this way. To learn of vandalism shows total disregard for one of Coventry's finest historical buildings. I hope something will be done to preserve the Guildhall and the history it holds, a history Coventry should be proud of.
St Mary's Guildhall
Rob Orland
Historic Coventry
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Thread starter
8 of 33  Mon 28th Jan 2013 7:36pm  
Webmaster: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:1358

It is a terrible shame, and a city of our size and stature should be ashamed that such a place as our Guildhall is not cherished and better looked after. For those wishing to see the article that has brought about this sudden attention, here's the page on the Coventry Telegraph site. If the above page proves too slow to load, a better option might be to view it on the Coventry Message Board run by Dutchman. I have a little more information and history of our Guildhall here on Historic Coventry. Let's raise the profile of this magnificent gem of a building and get it opened to the public all year round, like it used to be many years ago when it received the care and attention it deserved. Thumbs up
St Mary's Guildhall
morgana
the secret garden
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9 of 33  Mon 28th Jan 2013 10:22pm  
Member: Joined Nov 2011  Total posts:2216

What Michael Portillo says on Coventry's old buildings
St Mary's Guildhall
Dreamtime
Perth Western Australia
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10 of 33  Wed 30th Jan 2013 2:17pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:3160

Well I am glad to read in the Telegraph that the Guildhall will not be forgotten after all Happy
St Mary's Guildhall
Tricia
11 of 33  Wed 30th Jan 2013 6:56pm  
Off-topic / chat  

Rob Orland
Historic Coventry
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Thread starter
12 of 33  Thu 31st Jan 2013 7:29am  
Webmaster: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:1358

On 28th Jan 2013 10:22pm, morgana said: What Michael Portillo says on Coventry's old buildings
Thanks Morgana, it was good to see that clip about Coventry again, he did it quite sympathetically considering the slating he might've given the modern city. I'll even forgive him for shortening the Blitz by 5 hours!! (He said it went on for 6).
St Mary's Guildhall
flapdoodle
Coventry
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13 of 33  Mon 4th Feb 2013 11:57pm  
Member: Joined Nov 2010  Total posts:870

I think it's quite tragic. On a number of times over the years I've taken visitors to places like this and they've been shut. And also around other old bits that are derelict, or hidden away. In my opinion, Coventry is a far more interesting place to visit than somewhere like Stratford, which is a nice little town, but only famous because of the Shakespeare connection. It has a nice river and a theatre as well, but it's nothing more than a market town that got lucky because Shakespeare's parents bonked there. In Coventry there are a handful of old buildings that border on spectacular and also remains of city walls that are interesting, even if they have been somewhat ruined by a stupid glass bridge that goes nowhere. At the moment there is, I feel, a horrible disjointedness between old and new (newish). Coventry was designed to keep us in the shopping ghetto. It's time they broke that down.
St Mary's Guildhall
PhilipInCoventry
Holbrooks
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14 of 33  Tue 5th Feb 2013 7:25pm  
Moderator: Joined Apr 2010  Total posts:4076

Hi all, Wave Thank you Flapdoodle & so say many of us. Wave
St Mary's Guildhall
JohnB
Wokingham, Berkshire
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15 of 33  Wed 6th Feb 2013 7:13pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2011  Total posts:48

On 4th Feb 2013 11:57pm, flapdoodle said: I think it's quite tragic. On a number of times over the years I've taken visitors to places like this and they've been shut. And also around other old bits that are derelict, or hidden away. In my opinion, Coventry is a far more interesting place to visit than somewhere like Stratford, which is a nice little town, but only famous because of the Shakespeare connection. It has a nice river and a theatre as well, but it's nothing more than a market town that got lucky because Shakespeare's parents bonked there. In Coventry there are a handful of old buildings that border on spectacular and also remains of city walls that are interesting, even if they have been somewhat ruined by a stupid glass bridge that goes nowhere. At the moment there is, I feel, a horrible disjointedness between old and new (newish). Coventry was designed to keep us in the shopping ghetto. It's time they broke that down.
I think that just about sums it up! John
St Mary's Guildhall

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