The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

The secret side of one of the most iconic buildings in Leeds.
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Leodian
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The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

Postby Leodian » Fri 15 May, 2015 8:56 pm

The 4 lions on the main entrance of Leeds Town Hall look very weathered now, which is not surprising in view of their age and seemingly carved from easily eroding sandstone. It may be a surprise that they have even lasted so long (I assume they are original). I took these 3 photos of 3 of the lions on May 14 2015. The lion in the second one seems particularly badly eroded.

I wonder if it may be time to consider either recarving the lions (if that can be done) or perhaps better to replace them with new lions using a stone that is more resistant to erosion. That would of course be extremely expensive if say marble or granite is used, but it would be a very nice look.
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Close up of a lion at Leeds Town Hall on May 14 2015.
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A lion at Leeds Town Hall on May 14 2015.
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012R.jpg
A lion at Leeds Town Hall on May 14 2015
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chameleon
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Re: The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

Postby chameleon » Sat 16 May, 2015 6:01 pm

They are actually in Limestone Leodian, with a history a little different to that accredited to them. I should shortly be able to provide a link to our website which gives the results of some very in depth research into them and the part played by the Throp family in these and other works around Leeds. (If munki is still around, he may also be interested).
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Re: The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

Postby j.c.d. » Sat 16 May, 2015 6:50 pm

My brother and I plus many other kids sat on them on Childrens day and I think the Printers Gala which had a procession and floats up to Roundhay Park annually. I personally would like to see them growing even older gracefully and sometime in the future maybe they will be replaced but I always thought of them as Ladies that should not be disturbed..
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chameleon
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Re: The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

Postby chameleon » Sat 16 May, 2015 7:50 pm

I'm with you JCD! If ever they do leave, I'm having one of 'em 8-)

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tyke bhoy
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Re: The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

Postby tyke bhoy » Sun 17 May, 2015 9:16 am

Possibly one for the "you don't see" thread. Presumably part of the reason for the lions' state is 'acid rain'. The one Leo points out is most weathered is of course facing in the direction of prevailing winds and therefore rainfall (slightly south of west)
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hyperion
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Re: The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

Postby hyperion » Sun 17 May, 2015 1:57 pm

Hi leo
I'm posting this old picture just to show,that the lion's were being eroded as far back as 1933 and probably before that.As can be seen by the limestone deposits on the plinths, as the download/file.php?mode=view&id=8921 song say's (rust never sleeps). And neither does Erosion.
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uncle mick
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Re: The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

Postby uncle mick » Sun 17 May, 2015 2:53 pm

chameleon wroteColonThey are actually in Limestone Leodian, with a history a little different to that accredited to them. I should shortly be able to provide a link to our website which gives the results of some very in depth research into them and the part played by the Throp family in these and other works around Leeds. (If munki is still around, he may also be interested).

Leeds Mercury 8th June 1867 says they are made of Portland stone ???
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chameleon
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Re: The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

Postby chameleon » Sun 17 May, 2015 3:20 pm

This is the accepted citation uncle mick. Indeed it was that news item which led to some in depth research which has revealed that things were not as simple as they appear, certainly in relation to who actually carried out the work. This is a good case of don't take everything you read as being the complete story and. More when the research is ready to publish.

francof
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Re: The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

Postby francof » Sun 17 May, 2015 3:28 pm

During the second world war my grandfather worked as a junior administrative clerk at Leeds town hall. He would often delight myself and other members of my family by recounting the day in 1942 when Winston Churchill visited the city. Granddad was lucky enough to be near to the great man when he gave a typical moral boosting speech to over 25'000 people while stood on the steps of Leeds town hall. After completing his speech Churchill was heard by my Granddad to state loudly to Mayor Jessie Beatrice Kitson " what a wonderful building, but spoiled by those two bloody acid rain eroded lions. Replace them now or else". The lions, as we know were never replaced. However Mayor Kitson did die mysteriously two years later. Official cause of death was that he tripped over his own beard that at the time was 4.5 feet long.
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tyke bhoy
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Re: The badly weathered lions at Leeds Town Hall.

Postby tyke bhoy » Sun 17 May, 2015 3:45 pm

OT and probably not PC but with a name like Jessie Beatrice you would probably need a beard ;)
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