Market Hill c. 1910. No modern traffic and the square is used freely by pedestrians. Three years later Gainsborough's statue was unveiled in front of the church by Princess Louise.
On this page are buildings & some of their history that can be found in and around Sudbury
Thomas Ginn was a builder and property developer at a time when Sudbury was going through a period of civic improvements for which a special Act of Parliament was passed in 1826 for ... The Paving, Lighting, Cleansing, Watching, Watering and improving the Town and Borough of Sudbury in Suffolk.
Ginn, lived in Borehamgate, was commissioned to build a new town hall
in the fashionable Greek style on the site of The Exchequer Inn. He produced
a most elegant building in white Ballingdon brick with a stuccoed front
of three bays with a pedimented centre on a pair of coupled Ionic columns.
In the pediment were the arms of the borough. There was a courtroom for
the Quarterly Assizes and the Mayor's Parlour on the ground floor. A central
staircase hall led up to the Assembly Room that fills the
Architect's Name Discovered (November 2008)
Mrs Sue Woodrow of Hailsham, East Sussex, contacted the Town Archivist who in turn referred her to the Chairman of Sudbury History Society (Barry Wall), with a request for information concerning an ancestor of hers, Andrew John Johnston.
He was born in 1772 Stitchel, Roxburghshire and in 1802 married Elizabeth Fairbairn. In 1805 he is described as a carpenter and two years later was working for Thomas Hardwick as Clerk of Works at Quex House in Kent until 1809.
Until 1818, when he is described as Architect, he appears to have lived at various addresses in London. Then there is a gap of several years until 1832 when he wrote a letter to the Royal Manchester Institute from 19 York Street, Manchester. The letter is brief and refers to a forthcoming exhibition at the Institute.
John Johnston died in Manchester in 1833, one year after he wrote the letter.
Mrs Woodrow who is a direct descendant of John Johnston is anxious to learn more about him. Another descendant Ms Jane Clark discovered the letter and the Sudbury History Society is most grateful to them for communicating this information to us.
Thomas Hardwick, for whom Johnston worked, was an excellent architect who designed the parish church at Wanstead in Essex in 1787-90 in the classic style. He was also the architect responsible for the Goldsmith's Hall in Foster Lane, London. One can see clearly where Johnston's inspiration came from when he designed our Town Hall.
Hardwick's son was the architect for the Great Arch and Booking Hall at Euston Station and the Great Western Hotel at Paddington.
By a strange coincidence Miss Edith Freeman (a local historian) suggested a John Johnson (no 't') as a possible architect in her book The Heart of Sudbury, but she was referring to the architect of Woolverston Hall near Ipswich who was also County Surveyor for Essex. However the spelling is different and there is no connection between the two, nevertheless an extraordinary coincidence.
Sudbury History Society will continue to seek other work by Johnston in the Sudbury area and any information or suggestions would be most welcome.
(John Johnston 1772 - 1833)
You can contact the society, either by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephoning the chairman Barry Wall on 01787 227029
This two adverts from the Suffolk and Norfolk Telegraph, would suggest the building was not completed until 1829/30.
Suffolk and Norfolk Telegraph, dated 27th Feb 1828
Suffolk and Norfolk Telegraph, dated 9th June 1830