Numbers 1-43 and Cross Arcade, Leeds
Description: Numbers 1-43 and Cross Arcade
Date Listed: 25 April 1974
English Heritage Building ID: 465185
OS Grid Reference: SE3032233653
OS Grid Coordinates: 430322, 433653
Latitude/Longitude: 53.7983, -1.5411
Location: 2 Queen Victoria Street, Leeds LS1 7JH
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SE3033NW QUEEN VICTORIA STREET
714-1/76/139 (North side)
25/04/74 Nos.2-42 (Even)
Includes: Nos.98-103 BRIGGATE.
Includes: Nos.1-43 and Cross Arcade (northern section) COUNTY
Includes: Nos.65-69 VICAR LANE.
2 arcades with shops and offices. 1898-1900, restored 1989-90.
By Frank Matcham. For the Leeds Estates Company Development.
Pink brick and Burmantofts terracotta, cast-iron, slate and
3 storeys and attic, 7 bays to Briggate, 5 bays to Vicar Lane,
bay 4 being the round-arched arcade entrance on each facade;
shops in same style on right return (Queen Victoria Street)
have a Cross Arcade entrance between Nos 24 & 26.
Freely styled and richly decorated facades with moulded tiles
in the form of swags, strapwork scrolls and plaques.
Ground-floor windows restored 1989-90, large 3-light
first-floor shop windows, sashes to 2nd floor; elaborate attic
storey above corniced eaves has Dutch gables and corner
towers. Arcade entrances have an elaborate wrought-iron
overthrow with lettering: '1900/ County Arcade', and '1900/
Cross Arcade'; the date and words repeated on the Vicar Lane
facade in terracotta above ribbons and swag.
INTERIOR: the same style with even more elaborate detailing
than the exterior; T-plan arcade with a short access arm
(Cross Arcade) to Queen Victoria Street; ornate cast-iron
segmental-arched roof trusses, first-floor balconies with
elaborate cast-iron balustrades and stone ball finials
supported on columns and pilasters of Sienna marble between
shop fronts with curved glass windows; 3 glazed domes with
mosaics in the pendentives: those at east and west ends being
female heads with titles, 'Liberty', 'Peace', 'Commerce',
'Justice' etc., and over the crossing full figures
representing aspects of local industries including textiles.
Late C20 restoration includes flooring, with a fine circular
mosaic with fruit and flower motifs by J Veevers;
reconstruction of marble pilasters between shops in artificial
materials, 2 bridges across the arcade at east end and south
branch, and lighting.
Part of the overall design by Frank Matcham for the rebuilding
of part of the oldest district in the city, this being the
northern section. The architect was a designer of music halls
and theatres; the central dome is thought to have been
inspired by the 1865 Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II in Milan.
The most ornate example of a characteristic form of Leeds
architecture which developed from the glazing of rear yards in
the early C19; Thornton's Arcade (qv), 1877-78, on the west
side of Briggate was the first true arcade.
(Dixon, R & Muthesius, S: Victorian Architecture: 1978-: 140).
Listing NGR: SE3042833667
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.