Astoft

Guildhall and Roysse's Grammar School, Abingdon
         
Guildhall, Abingdon
         
  Click on photos below to enlarge  
         
              
         
  The L-shaped complex of buildings to the south of St Nicolas' Church and the Abbey Gateway was originally St John's Hospital. After the Dissolution of the Monasteries in the 16th century they became the municipal buildings and Roysse's grammar school. These are all now part of the Guildhall.  
         
  Notes below in italics from Berkshire by Nikolaus Pevsner (1966)
Yale University Press, New Haven and London.
 
         
Guildhall, Abingdon                             
         
  The stone guildhall building adjoining the abbey gateway has a rubble ground floor with restored Perp windows and a better preserved S doorway and belonged to the Hospital of St John. In 1731-3 John Stevens of Wantage raised the building one storey, and in this new part, in 1759, a fine Council Chamber was made. The N front has in the middle a big niche flanked by pairs of Doric pilasters, placed naÔvely on brackets. ... To the W the Municipal Buildings have a successful outer staircase arrangement provided in 1958 and incorporating to the N a curious doorway with Elizabethan caryatids but C18 Gothick top parts. ...
This in fact dates from 1811, and there used to be shops and houses to the right of this and running down Bridge Street, creating a courtyard for Roysse's Grammar School, to which this doorway was the entrance. The buildings along Bridge Street, were demolished in 1938, creating the open space shown in the top row above.
 
         
          Roysse's School, Abingdon                   
         
  Behind, towards Bridge Street, is an irregular brick part, also of 1731 etc. This contains the staircase ... and the so-called Bear Room with a handsome Venetian window. ...

There follows part of the former ROYSSE'S GRAMMAR SCHOOL. to which the entrance was the archway mentioned before. It is a timber-framed building which also formed part of the hospital originally. ...
Now part of the Guildhall, the school having moved elsewhere (now Abingdon School).
 
         
         
  There are many interesting details and historical pictures about the site on the plaque in front of the buildings.  
         
         
  The eastward extension of the guildhall beyond the Abbey Gateway is from 1966.  
         
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