History of the town hall and the golden gates

The architect, James Gibbs

Dr Richard Pocock, the well known 18th century traveller who was later Bishop of Ossory, wrote that as he was passing through Warrington on 14 July 1750, he saw Thomas Patten Esq. busy building this house and this dating is confirmed by the date which can be clearly seen on the rainwater-heads on the sides of the building.

Other contemporary manuscripts make it perfectly clear that James Gibbs, the builder of the Radcliffe Library at Oxford and many other great works, was the architect and builder of this house, but from its dating it would seem likely that it was the last important building erected to his designs and finished in his lifetime. 

It became known as Bank Hall, and originally stood in open fields on the edge of the town, surrounded by extensive landscaped gardens and with nothing to obscure the views south to the River Mersey and the Cheshire countryside beyond.

This situation remained until early in the 19th century, when because of the growth of the town and its industries, it would seem that a perimeter wall was built around the estate to provide some sort of privacy.