Corsham Town Hall

Coordinates: 51°26′03″N 2°11′05″W / 51.4341°N 2.1846°W / 51.4341; -2.1846
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Corsham Town Hall
Corsham Town Hall
LocationHigh Street, Corsham
Coordinates51°26′03″N 2°11′05″W / 51.4341°N 2.1846°W / 51.4341; -2.1846
ArchitectWilliam Harris Bromley
Architectural style(s)Neoclassical style
Listed Building – Grade II
Official nameTown Hall
Designated20 December 1960
Reference no.1284062
Corsham Town Hall is located in Wiltshire
Corsham Town Hall
Shown in Wiltshire

Corsham Town Hall is a municipal structure in the High Street, Corsham, Wiltshire, England. The structure, which serves as the meeting place of Corsham Town Council, is a Grade II listed building.[1]


The building was commissioned by the lord of the manor and former member of parliament, Paul Methuen as a combined market hall and courthouse.[2] It was designed in the neoclassical style, built in ashlar stone and was completed in 1784.[2][3] The building was arcaded on the ground floor, so that markets could be held, with a small attic above.[1] The design involved a symmetrical main frontage with five bays facing onto the High Street; the central section of three bays, which slightly projected forward, featured a pediment with the coat of arms of the Methuen family in the tympanum.[1] The outer bays were surmounted at roof level by a cornice and a balustrade.[1]

Civic leaders decided to increase the capacity of the building by adding an extra floor, to a design by William Harris Bromley of Corsham, in 1882. As enlarged, the central bay featured a doorway with a fanlight flanked by brackets supporting a stone balcony. The other bays on the ground floor and the bays on the first floor were fenestrated with sash windows, while, at roof level, the original central pediment, cornice and parapet were all re-used in the design of the enlarged structure.[1] Internally, the principal rooms were the main hall and the council chamber.[4]

Following the implementation of the Local Government Act 1894, Corsham exercised its right as a civil parish[5] to form a town council: the first meeting took place in the town hall under the chairmanship of the member of parliament, George Fuller, in January 1895.[6] In 1897, the balcony was enhanced by the addition of an arched stone frame containing a medallion bearing a relief portrait of Queen Victoria to commemorate her Diamond Jubilee.[1]

At the start of the First World War, the town hall was used as a recruitment post for service personnel before they undertook basic training and were then posted to the Western Front.[7] It went on to become a home for Belgian refugees before becoming a Voluntary Aid Detachment hospital in October 1914.[8][9] It provided care for some 875 wounded service personnel during the war before closing in August 1919.[8][10]

The town hall continued to serve as the main civic venue for the town throughout the 20th century and, after the new unitary authority, Wiltshire Council, was established in April 2009, it became the meeting place for the Corsham Area Board of the council.[11] The paralympic swimmer, Stephanie Millward, who learnt to swim in the baths in the town, became the first person to be awarded the Freedom of the Town of Corsham when she received the honour at the town hall on 2 March 2013.[12][13]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Historic England. "Town Hall (1284062)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 11 September 2021.
  2. ^ a b Lewis, Samuel (1848). "'Corfe-Castle - Corstone', in A Topographical Dictionary of England". London: British History Online. pp. 685–693. Retrieved 11 September 2021.
  3. ^ Pevsner, Nikolaus; Cherry, Bridget (2002). Wiltshire (Buildings of England Series). Yale University Press. p. 195. ISBN 978-0300096590.
  4. ^ "Corsham Town Hall". Guides for brides. Retrieved 11 September 2021.
  5. ^ "Corsham CP". Vision of Britain. Retrieved 11 September 2021.
  6. ^ "Corsham Town Council has organised events and activities for its 125th anniversary". Gazette and Herald. 5 March 2020. Retrieved 11 September 2021.
  7. ^ "Corsham Town Hall goes back to 1914 to remember WW1 outbreak". BBC. 20 August 2014. Retrieved 11 September 2021.
  8. ^ a b "World War I Hospital: Corsham Town Hall". Corsham Civic Society. Retrieved 11 September 2021.
  9. ^ Crawford, T. S. (2012). Wiltshire and the Great War: Training the Empire's Soldiers. Crowood Press. ISBN 978-1847973559.
  10. ^ "Corsham Blue Heritage Trail" (PDF). Corsham Heritage Trials Project. Retrieved 11 September 2021.
  11. ^ "Corsham Area Board". Wiltshire Council. 14 October 2021. Retrieved 11 September 2021.
  12. ^ "Honour for Wiltshire paralympian". ITV. 2 March 2013. Archived from the original on 17 August 2016. Retrieved 11 September 2021.
  13. ^ "Paralympian Millward honoured". 2 March 2013. Retrieved 11 September 2021.