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Drapes Lifted Off Historic Hall

A classical building squeezed in alongside the old cathedral is opening this weekend for the first time in four years, because of people power.

A survey among the visitors at last year’s Heritage Open Days event saw Drapers Hall as the firm favourite to be opened.

Drapers Hall

The building is currently being used as a church centre for Holy Trinity church, but it previously was a powerbase for the drapers of the city.

When the city had an international reputation for its cloth-making, the drapers were very wealthy men, and had a lot of influence in the city.

The recorded activities of the department date back to the city’s medieval hey-day, but the first known building on the site was built in 1637 and torn down in the early 1770s.

The replacement for that building, made of stone instead of timber, lasted a mere 60 years as dry rot set in.

But its replacement has lasted for 170 years, although it has had some close shaves on the way.

The exterior is a simple classical design, but architect Thomas Rickman added a Grecian elegance to its interior.

The building escaped the bombing which devastated the cathedral next door, and narrowly avoided demolition as part of plans to open up the area.

This weekend will be a chance to see it in its most untampered state for many years.

Local history groups such as Coventry Watchmakers Museum will be in the hall, as will CWN, from 11am to 5pm on Saturday and Sunday.

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CWN / Heritage / Heritage Open Days / 15 Sep 00

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM