This next post regarding Manchester’s forgotten Georgian heritage focuses on King Street in the heart of the city centre. In the 18th century is was home to some of the most exclusive private residences, in the 19th century it became the centre of big businesses and banks and today it is part of Manchester’s more up-market shopping districts. Fortunately number 35 King Street has survived almost three centuries of change and it is a classic example of an 18th century domestic property and possibly my favourite piece of architecture in Manchester.

Number 35

35 King Street, Manchester (Source: Own Photograph, 2015)

Number 35 King Street was built in 1736 as the residence of Doctor Peter Mainwaring (1694- 1785). At the time of Dr Mainwaring’s inhabitancy it must be noted that the address was 12 King Street and therefore we can avoid confusion with the historical 35 King Street (which no longer exists)which was the home of the Greg Family who owned Quarry Bank Mill.

Dr Mainwaring was the son of Peter Mainwaring of Wybunbury, Cheshire and he studied firstly at Northwich school and then for  his BA and MA degrees at Cambridge University, graduating in 1716 and 1720 respectively.

By 1725 he was practicing in Manchester and in 1731 he married Ann Malyn in Ashton-upon-Mersey. Whilst in Manchester, Mainwaring worked with the Byrom family and was a close friend of the poet John Byrom. Although they apparently disagreed about who was the rightful monarch of Britain during the early 18th century. Byrom supporting the Jacobite’s and Mainwaring being a loyalist and Justice of the Peace. In 1745 when the Jacobite’s were retreating from their failed march on London, Dr. Mainwaring rode around Manchester on horseback encouraging local people to arm themselves against the rebels in an attempt to hold them off. However they broke through and a group of them went to Dr. Mainwaring’s home on King Street. Byrom’s daughter Elizabeth wrote in her diary about the event later, noting they had “been a little rough“.

Entrance hall at 35 King Street, showing original internal features and mosaic tiled floor. (Source: Own Photograph, 2015)

In the early 1750s the Manchester Infirmary was founded at Daub Holes field which is now the site of Piccadilly Gardens. Dr Mainwaring was one of the original physicians at the Infirmary and he set out a list of rules for the care of patients in the “lunatic” wards there. He retired in 1778 and in 1782 he was awarded the title of Physician Extraordinary when he presented many of his book to the Infirmary which in turn founded the library there. Around the same time he was elected President of the Literary and Philosophical Society on its foundation, out of respect for his life long work.

Manchester Infirmary and Lunatic Asylum, Daub Holes Field. C. 1770, Greaves Collection    (Source: Manchester Libraries

Dr Peter Mainwaring died on 30th December 1785 at the age of 91. His obituary published in the Manchester Mercury reads:

 Last Friday died, in the 91st year of his age, Peter Mainwaring, M.l)., of this town. A gentleman highly respected for his integrity and public services
in the line of his profession, and as a magistrate and greatly beloved by all who had the happiness of his acquaintance.”

He was buried in the churchyard at St. John’s, which was founded by the Byrom family. The church was closed in 1931 and subsequently demolished and the site is now home to St. John’s Gardens, a memorial park to the thousands of people still buried there.

Changing Roles

In 1788 Number 35 was taken over by John Jones, who was a banker and a tea-dealer (as tea was such an expensive commodity in the 18th century). After the death of John Jones in the early 1790s, the business passed down to his sons (who ditched the tea-dealing) and his son-in-law Lewis Lloyd. Lloyd came to Manchester in 1789 to finish his education towards becoming a Unitarian Minister. Whilst preaching at Blackley he met Sarah Jones and they married and he subsequently entered into the family banking business. It was then known as “Samuel & William Jones Lloyd & Co.” Three of Lewis Lloyd’s brothers also came to Manchester and one of them, Edward Lloyd, worked as a clerk at the bank. In 1809 he and his wife were residing at the property but as the city centre became unfashionable to live in, the building changed from its multi-functional role as home/business to functioning solely as a bank. This is the role of the property for the next 200 years.

In 1848 the bank became known as the Lloyd Entwistle & Co. after the men who ran it; Edward Lloyd, William Entwistle, Henry Bury and Thomas Barlow Jervis. By this point in the nineteenth century, King Street was at the heart of Manchester’s business district including other banks and the original Town Hall. In 1863 the company was taken over by the Manchester & Liverpool District Bank Ltd (later known as the District Bank).

Number 35 King Street, 1904 (Source: Manchester Libraries

In 1952 the building was given its Grade II listed building status, however this did not deter interior alterations during the 1970s when the bank was known as the National Westminster.

In the 1990s the building was sold by the bank and it became retail space. It is currently used by Jack Wills and despite the modern steel and glass extensions at the sides and rear of the property, the internal layout is sympathetic to the buildings eighteenth century history. It retains many historic features, including the railings at the front which continue to define Number 35 as one of King Street’s most elegant addresses.