Kendal Town Hall dominates the top of Lowther Street, where Stricklandgate and Highgate meet. It can be seen from most parts of the town above the roof tops, with the clock tower being especially visible. The building is an amalgamation of various building periods, and is built on the site of the town’s White Hall, also known as Leaden or Leather Hall, which was once used as the cloth exchange for the cloth trade in Kendal. Cloth was traded with the Americas during this period, with large amounts being shipped out to Virginia.
Above. The clock tower.
Above. Kendal skyline, dominated by the Town Hall clock tower.
Above. The original entrance to the Post Office on Lowther Street.
Above. Kendal's coat of arms above the fireplace in the Bindloss Room.
Above. Mayor Bindloss and his wife...benefactors of Kendal Town Hall.
Above. A few portraits of some of Kendal's Mayors of days gone by.
Above. George Romney. World renowned artist and one time Mayor of Kendal.
Hidden away in the rear of the town hall is the Mayor’s parlour. This room is home to some of the more valuable and rare antiquities that the town possesses. For example, there is Queen Katherine Parr’s book of devotions. The book is one of the last surviving items owned by the Queen, and was bought by public subscription for the town in 1936. The town’s regalia are also kept safely here, as are the town’s charters.
Outside the town hall, and to the left of the main entrance, there is a curious lump of stone set into the wall. The piece of stone was once part of base of the town’s Market Cross and originally stood in Stricklandgate near the market place. It is called the Ca Steean, or the Cauld Stean, and was used as a place from which important local and national events were announced. The accession of King Edward VIII and George VI and Elizabeth II were announced from this spot, as well as the ill fated Prince Charles, aka Bonnie Prince Charlie. The stone was used as a meeting spot for George Fox, the Quaker preacher, when he addressed the crowds in Kendal in 1652. At this time, it was situated in the market place. However, it was moved when the market place was reduced in size, to where the current war memorial is situated. When the library at the head of the market place was demolished, it was again moved to its present home outside the town hall and underneath the Bindloss’s foundation stone.
Above. The Calling Stone, from which Prince Charlie was proclaimed King in 1745.