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Photo-a-Day Archive
Photo-a-Day Archive

Photo-a-Day  (Monday, 13th November, 2023)

Civic Centre

Civic Centre
Millgate. The building is to be turned into a creative workspace for start-up enterprises.

Photo: Brian  (iPhone)
Views: 1,429

Comment by: Poet on 13th November 2023 at 00:17

Their first act of creativity should be to pull the whole thing down .

Comment by: PeterP on 13th November 2023 at 07:08

What a concrete mess of a building

Comment by: Helen of Troy on 13th November 2023 at 07:16

Now thats one building that could have been on the list for the bulldozers. What an ugly thing.
Still that might come yet if it gets the 'concrete disease '

Comment by: Veronica on 13th November 2023 at 08:34

One of the ugliest buildings in Wigan ….still standing when other better buildings have been demolished. More screws loose with the planners…

Comment by: Irene Roberts on 13th November 2023 at 08:53

It puts me in mind of The Houghton Weavers' song, "The Martians have landed in Wigan". If they landed in front of that monstrosity they'd go straight back home.

Comment by: Garry on 13th November 2023 at 09:19

The only way to make building look great and pleasing to the eye is bricks and mortar not concrete.
Concrete ok for floors, bridges and sea walls.
This building looks more like a prison.

Comment by: Arthur on 13th November 2023 at 09:21

Now I wouldn't mind if Wigan Council demolished that eye sore.

Comment by: Colin Traynor on 13th November 2023 at 10:05

Typical example of the 'Brutalist' style of architecture around at the time and I always hated it.
Perhaps though, with the concrete painted cream, well lit and landscaped in a similar manner to Preston Bus Station, which I used to loath but now love, in 50 years people may look back and say it is a iconic building of its time.

Comment by: Cyril on 13th November 2023 at 10:08

Now, now, according to a post on Linkedin by the council the Civic Centre is one of Wigan's most iconic buildings - and surely they can't be wrong - can they?


It's as ugly on the inside as it is on the outside, but they are most insistent that a silk purse can be made from a sow's ear.

Wonder where the other iconic building is? - maybe it'll be another ugly concrete block - the old police station on Harrogate Street could be a contender.

Comment by: Maureen on 13th November 2023 at 10:53

Apart from the windows it looks like a prison … I once had a conversation with someone who is a well known figure in Wigan who said “Don’t you think the Civic Centre looks modern” I said I thought it looked terrible.. he seemed very surprised.

Comment by: DTease on 13th November 2023 at 12:54

I don’t think putting lipstick on this pig would make any improvement.

Comment by: Julie on 13th November 2023 at 13:06

Absolutely horrible building,the loonies run the asylum.

Comment by: Pat McCarthy on 13th November 2023 at 14:07

Perhaps an apple in its mouth DTease?

Comment by: T on 13th November 2023 at 14:44

Was speaking with someone who works for the council not long back about the civic centre. They would love to get rid of it but the amount of asbestos in it and the cost associated mean that it isn't a viable option currently.

Comment by: Colin Traynor on 13th November 2023 at 15:27

Hello Cyril,
I respectfully beg to differ, the former Police Station now the Premier Inn has cosmetically been transformed into a far more aesthetically pleasing structure than the concrete monstrosity that was there before and re-purposed without expensive demolition and rebuild to bring a new jobs and accommodation to what is currently the only hotel in Wigan be it just off the town centre.
Again and with with respect please give that obsolete and endangered monstrosity at the top of Millgate a chance of survival and rehabilitation. I do think it squat and out of place in that location but there is something about it that speaks of a moment in time of Wigans history and development. In the words of John Lennon ' Give a Piece of Concrete a Chance'.
I am a passionate advocate for retaining the existing Market Hall and Clock Tower and having them repurposed, if not as a market hall, a theatre, performance space or something with wide appeal. Opened by HRH Diana Princess of Wales these are the only remaining vestiges of that era . Both structures speak of a moment in time and are structurally sound, all just needs some imagination and funding rather than this constant cycle of destruction.
There are more ugly so called 'modern buildings' exist in Wigan that I would like to see the back of:
Brocol House King Street.
Bryan House Standishgate.
The Post Office Sorting Office Hallgate/ Richmond Street.
Four story abandoned building at the side St Johns Church Standishgate.
The building that replaced the graceful Quadrant Building at the corner of King Street and Rodney Street.
All increase my blood pressure and make my skin crawl every time I see them.
Sorry for voicing my opinion, all additional loves and pet hates welcome here.

Comment by: Helen of Troy on 13th November 2023 at 15:45

I take it we are all in agreement then ?!

Comment by: Colin Traynor on 13th November 2023 at 16:35

Not quite sure Helen, remember a toad in the hole is worth two in the bush!!!!!!

Comment by: Alan on 13th November 2023 at 17:23

Looks like the maternity unit at Billinge Hospital. (before it got demolished)

Comment by: Irene Roberts on 13th November 2023 at 17:33

Colin Traynor, this has nothing to do with today's photo, but your comment to Helen made me think of my Mam, who was the Mrs. Malaprop of Ince, always getting her words mixed up, and she was a belter when it came to mixing proverbs...! "A bird in th'and", she would announce dramatically...."gathers no moss", and then she wouldn't have clue why we all fell about laughing! On Ince Bar, when I was a child, there was a fruit and veg shop called Elsie Robinson's, but my Mam always called it Edie Traynor's, who I imagine was a former owner, and I used to work at Boots' with a lady called Lynne Traynor; would either of those ladies be related to you, if you don't mind my asking?

Comment by: Cyril on 13th November 2023 at 18:33

Colin, no matter how they've dressed it up with stucco as a hotel, to many its still the same old police station and concrete block underneath, and I do agree with you about those other buildings.

The building of the Civic Centre also meant that a lot of good buildings got to be demolished along Millgate and also along Station Road which included the Empress and the old Central station and then the money ran out, so the Civic Centre never got to have its concrete corridors extended over onto Station Road, a pity it didn't happen before the council had had their mad days of wanton demolition along Station Road, and better still Millgate also.

Comment by: DTease on 13th November 2023 at 19:09

I would gladly contribute a small donation to see the back of this love child of a demented 1960s concrete clown.

Comment by: DTease on 13th November 2023 at 19:27

With apologies to John Betjeman.
Come friendly bombs and drop on this
Nothing else could give such bliss.

Comment by: Veronica on 13th November 2023 at 20:41

Don’t forget the one in King St either…in fact that one is worse.
There’ll be no statues for the 60’s Councillors and that’s a fact.

Comment by: Jeanette on 13th November 2023 at 20:52

Well said,Dtease

Comment by: Colin Traynor on 13th November 2023 at 21:20

So pleased my opinions caused controversy and various and alternative thoughts, that is what is needed.
Best regards to all. Colin

Comment by: Pru on 13th November 2023 at 21:28

The place is awful inside and out. Many a ceiling tile has crowned people in the past.

Comment by: Irene Roberts on 13th November 2023 at 22:07

So are you related to the ladies I asked about, Colin?

Comment by: Cyril on 13th November 2023 at 23:00

Yes, a good discussion Colin.

Comment by: Colin Traynor on 14th November 2023 at 10:27

Irene, I don't know about the Fruit and Veg Shop Ince but there was once Traynor's Fruit and Veg in Walton Liverpool, think it was the same people who opened a shop in Market Street a few years back that eventually closed.
There was a cousin of mine worked in Boots who I never met or new, from what I recall perhaps the least said the better!!!

Comment by: Wiganer on 14th November 2023 at 19:07

And to think, they knocked down Penningtons furniture store for this.

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