Rylands Building

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The Rylands Building from Piccadilly Gardens

The Rylands Building is a Grade II listed building in Market Street, Manchester, England.[1] Situated close to the Piccadilly area of Manchester city centre, the building was originally built as a warehouse by the Rylands textile company (Rylands & Sons Ltd) which was founded by John Rylands. That firm had occupied warehouses in High Street ever since 1822.[2] Its west-facing side is on High Street; The building was designed by the eminent Manchester architects, Fairhursts (Harry S. & P. G. Fairhurst), in an Art Deco style. It is clad in Portland stone and features a decorative corner tower and eclectic 'zig zag' window lintels. The work was completed in 1932.[3]

The building is situated in the Smithfield conservation area of Manchester, an area which was known for its markets and textile warehouses.[4] Following a fire, in 1957, which totally destroyed the premises of Paulden's Department Store, in All Saints, the company acquired the Rylands warehouse building and converted it to a store. This was then a direct rival to the Lewis's store, on the opposite side of Market Street. In 1973 Debenhams, the owner of Pauldens rebranded the store in their name. Since that time it has remained Debenhams, Manchester's premier department store retailer, following the closure of Lewis's, Affleck and Brown and C & A, plus the splitting up of Kendal Milne[.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Rylands Building (Debenhams), Manchester". British Listed Buildings.
  2. ^ Farnie, D. A. (1993). John Rylands of Manchester. Manchester: John Rylands University Library of Manchester. ISBN 0-86373-116-3; p. 83
  3. ^ Hartwell, Clare (2001), Manchester, (Pevsner Architectural Guides.) Penguin Books, pp. 11, 253, ISBN 0-14-071131-7; pp. 169, 171
  4. ^ "Smithfield Conservation Area - History". Manchester City Council.
  5. ^ "Debenhams Manchester". Retrieved 2012-11-20.

Coordinates: 53°28′56″N 2°14′19″W / 53.4823°N 2.2386°W / 53.4823; -2.2386