Saturday, August 06, 2022

Backstreet fantasy: The Clare Street Drill Hall, Northampton

I should have gone to Braunston yesterday, which is a Northamptonshire canal village that, with some justification, calls itself the "Heart of the Waterways". But the vital bus was cancelled - blame Brexit or Covid - so I spent the day wandering the back streets of Northampton instead.

At one point a slightly Toy Town turret appeared in the distance. Eventually, it turned out to be the Clare Street Drill Hall, though the building looks far grander than that name makes it sound.

Wikipedia tells us the it was designed "in the Fortress Gothic Revival Style" and opened in 1859 as the headquarters of the 1st Northamptonshire Rifle Volunteer Corps.

That entry goes on to detail its varied and diminishing uses since. It's a reminder of both Northampton's importance as a centre and the decline in numbers of the British Army.

Anyway, this sort of backstreet fantasy is just what I enjoy coming across.

Later. It used to be even more fantastic.

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