Group 19

“Town Hall in the Making” will focus on creating an interaction between the people of Greater Manchester and Manchester Town Hall. Through our survey, we have realised younger generations have little or no interaction with the Town Hall. Thus we will target young children through a hands-on construction process. This process includes interactive model workshops, to help children understand how the Town Hall is built and how it works, and a 3D Town Hall leaflet that residents can take home with them as a memory of the heritage. Through this project, we aim to once again make the Town Hall the focal point of the city - to “Make What’s Closed Open”.

Mona T / Jo Lynn T / Eva C / Sonia Mancxia B / Louise R / Seenam S

Introducing the Project .

Our Town Hall project began in January 2018 as a major update of the Grade I listed architecture piece. Investigations and surveys were done since 2014 to decide things that need to be restored for modern standards. The town hall will be re-open in 2024 for its people, with aims and objectives below:

1. Transform users’ and visitors’ experience
2. Enhance the use of town hall as a visitor destination and increase access to its people
3. Restore and celebrate the significant heritage asset
4. Deliver economic and social value for Manchester
5. Increase participation of civil society to reconnect people to the institution that represent them

Website link:
Posted 10 Mar 2020 18:19
Introducing the team !
The Group 19 of EVENTS 20’ is made up of six MArch 1 students from the Manchester School of Architecture. We're made up of a variety of people from various backgrounds. We have regular meetings (sometimes heated discussions) which made us get together and become very close to each other. Here is some information about us :

Eva Cheung .
Landscape and Urbanism (LULU) . Coventry University .
Loves photography, model making & traveling

Louise Roussie .
Continuity in Architecture (CiA) . ESA, Paris . Acting, music, travelling.

Mona Tamaru .
Continuity in Architecture (CiA) . Tama Art University, Tokyo . Love food, dance, hand drawings and watercolouring. Interested in vernacular architecture and its sustainability .

Seenam Bhagat .
CPU/AI . Sharda University, India . Painting of modern and abstract art, charcoal sketches.

Sonia Mancxia .
Landscape and Urbanism (LULU) . Taylor’s University, Malaysia . I love the soul of humble sketches that inspire the thoughts and reverberate the emotions.

Tan Jo Lynn .
Continuity in Architecture (CiA) . Taylor’s University, Malaysia . Simple line drawings that speak for itself and small scale architecture pieces that subtly touch my heart are the love of my life.

We are open to any ideas, be crazy or not, to help our Town Hall become more engaging. We are all looking forward to meet BA students to join our group!
Posted 10 Mar 2020 22:25
Introducing our Collaborators .

Peter Norris .
Peter is a Work and Skills Specialist at Manchester City Council. He is an experienced public sector professional focusing on making sure Manchester's residents are connected to our city's success. He is currently into social value & inclusive growth related subjects and is working with employers in the city to provide opportunities for Mancunians from all walks of life. 

Westley Robinson
Westley is a Work and Skills Project Manager for Manchester City Council currently working on the Our Town Hall Refurbishment Project. Key work priorities are supporting the supply chain to deliver skills, apprenticeships, and employment for Manchester residents from this once in a lifetime opportunity. 
Posted 10 Mar 2020 22:28
The Town Hall Facts! -How we came up to do our project-
Here's a little background story on how we consolidated our project scheme. Although our collaborator's aim was to "Make the Town Hall more accessible and engaging for everyone", we didn't know what people actually thought and wanted from the Town Hall. So we started off with a survey to find this out - we received over 50 responses from a variety of age group, from 19 to over 60. The image shows some of the questions we've asked.
The survey, in fact, revealed a notable amount of engagement with the Town Hall. We were surprised to hear that almost 70% of the people visited there 3 or more times! Also, the people have visited the place for so many different purposes. It is not only a place for civil matters, but it has been a place for various events such as the famous Christmas market, celebrating the football match, and even a wedding! …Did you know that the Town Hall held so many different functions?

The next post will reveal some interesting stories about the Town Hall...Coming soon!
Posted 12 Mar 2020 11:05
The Town Hall Facts no.2! -How we came up to do our project-
Another question we asked was “ Do you have any memories of the Town Hall or the Albert square?” Through this question, we’ve received some very intriguing answers, from a variety of events. However, many of the interesting answers we’ve received showed that they were from the old age - and that the younger generation has little interaction or the memory with the Town Hall. We have also heard from the Council that there used to be a tour for the school kids to the Town Hall until 10 years ago, but nothing has been done since then. Therefore, we have decided to target the young generations, especially the kids, to get them know and be interested about the great heritage of our town.

Posted 12 Mar 2020 11:23
As people’s social lives evolve, opportunities to go to Town Hall decrease and people start to disconnect from it. But it still plays an important role in our civic lives! The aim of the Town Hall in the Making project is to strengthen the connection between the people of Greater Manchester and the Town Hall and to promote it as a place of social interaction, for children and adults alike. What better way to do this than with a hands-on and artistic approach, when all generations can interact and learn together of the Mancunians’ architectural and social heritage. While the Town Hall is closed for renovation, it is the best way to discover it and understand what it means to a town. With this hands-on approach, we bring the Town Hall directly to the people.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 16:28
The interactive workshops we will be preparing will be targeting young children between five and eleven years old (mostly primary school students): we need to adapt our workshop session plan and our teaching school to this young audience. To help us prepare as best as possible, we have requested the help of the STEM Ambassadors of the Science and Industry Museum of Manchester. They have experience in a STEM field and volunteer at the museum in order to convey to the younger generation their enthusiasm for their work. Therefore, in addition to being passionate in a STEM field, they are also able to spark interest in children, which is what we aim to do with the interactive workshops! During a forty-five-minute session with the ambassadors, we will be able to learn and ask questions about how to best engage and captivate the children during a hands-on workshop. Everything we will have learned during our interaction with the ambassadors will then help us to draw up an appropriate session plan for the workshops, and to adapt our language and attitudes towards the children. The aim is to give these children the best experience possible in learning about architecture, and how it combines, in this case, with civic life.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 16:28
Not your ordinary leaflets !

Based on the survey results and observations done on site, it is a fast-paced environment where there is a continuous flow of passers-by but minimal stops. This idea would be a quick and highly effective solution which could reach out to the general public. These could be displayed in the future visitor centre when the Town Hall reopens, as an interactive piece of information. The leaflets will be incorporated into the paper toys as one coherent piece. Think about having a mini Town Hall sitting at home – an analogue to the idea of ‘Our Town Hall’ as piece that belongs to Mancunians.
Aim: To break the stereotype of typical leaflets and provide more hands-on approach.
1. Understanding the basic composition of the Town Hall and develop a spatial-sensitive mind
2. Understanding the building from inside-out
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:22
By taking apart and building back up the model of Manchester Town Hall, the tetrisceptional model would ideally be translated as a model that can be detached (imagine puzzle-like pieces) which would give more perspective towards the exterior and interior of the entire Town Hall. This would include the spaces, function, circulation, structure and any features within the building.
1. Understanding the basic composition of the Town Hall and develop a spatial-sensitive mind
2. Understanding the building from inside-out
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:30
In preparation for the workshops, we have reached out to potential schools and groups that might benefit from these sessions. An invite has been sent out and we are expecting to receive responses soon!
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:42
The first week is about getting to know the team and understanding how to deal with the vulnerable age group – children. We are fortunate to get in touch with the inspiring STEM Ambassador Team that will be giving us a session on how to conduct the workshops in the second week effectively. Building upon the knowledge and understanding gained, we will then construct an interactive piece of model that will be used as a medium to connect with the communities.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 20:05
This second week is the start of the workshops. We are happy to collaborate with 3 primary schools which showed their interest in the workshops when the invitations were sent out. Through these workshops, we aim to increase community engagement and also to introduce architectural concepts through an educational approach. To wrap things up, we are to present an evaluation report to our collaborator - Town Hall at the end of the intensive week. This would be a step to understand the responses of the general public which play a major role in the project as the main aim is to get the people connected to the Town Hall.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 20:14
The progress of the paper toy model up to date, and it is ready to incorporate with the information needed for the leaflet.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 20:55
Announcement- Meet the Schools! Vol.1
After sending invites for our interactive workshops, we have got a number of responses and have successfully managed to arrange 3 workshop sessions with schools. Here is a bit of information about the schools we will be visiting!
Our first venue is St. Edmund's Roman Catholic Primary School. It is a Catholic primary school placed in the Harpurhey district of Manchester approximately one mile north of the city centre. It is an area designated as one of the most socially deprived districts in the country. There are 202 pupils in roll from reception to year 6, and their educational philosophy is based on the provision of excellent teaching and learning opportunities with a view to developing the whole person so that they prepare the children to be good Christian citizens in the wider community. All children are provided with a Catholic education in a caring and supportive environment where differences are welcomed and celebrated.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 20:57
Announcement- Meet the Schools! Vol.2
Our second venue is the Saviour Church of England Primary School! It is a primary school situated in an area of social and economic disadvantage close to Manchester city centre. It is a Voluntary Aided School which consists of pupils from 3 to 11 years old, and the school population comes from White British, African and Asian backgrounds. It offers distinct character education such as the Forest School, which give the children the opportunity to explore their surroundings and encourage them to become considerate and independent learners. The school offers a wide range of activities including hands-on workshops, which link closely with our project.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 21:02
Announcement- Meet the Schools! Vol.3
The last but not the least is the St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Primary School! This is a Catholic primary school in Collyhurst, an area of high social deprivation. Despite the many challenges it has faced in recent years, it has now become an effective community; a beacon of hope to the children and families in Collyhurst. It is part of a trio of schools that come under the parish of St. Patrick and St. Malachy. It hold pupils aged from 3 to 11 with over 200 pupils in total. The school is conducted by the visionary and passionate leadership of the Executive Headteacher, which permeates leadership at all levels, and the daily life of the school is driven by the example and message of Christ. It has a welcoming family atmosphere and families receive outstanding care and support, especially the most vulnerable in the community.
All the schools show great characteristics and devotion to their education, and we aim to contribute to children's growth as Mancunians through our Town Hall interactive workshops. We would like to thank all three schools for their cooperation to our project, and we're looking forward to meet them all!
Posted 23 Mar 2020 21:04
Our very first visit to the Town Hall was on the 21st of January which also marks our very first meeting with our collaborators. We were fortunate to have a quick glimpse around the Town Hall and was guided by our collaborators, Peter and Westley. We noticed how intricately the details were designed to portray its quality of space. Lining the internal courtyard are 3 main wings of the Town Hall and main staircases that had so much character.
Posted 29 Mar 2020 14:23
We had 3 meetings with the collaborator at the Town Hall with the upcoming one (scheduled 8th April) being cancelled due to certain circumstances. Agendas were sent out prior to the meetings with a follow up meeting minutes after. The meetings were chaired by the MSA team with the support of the collaborator.
Posted 29 Mar 2020 14:27
To ensure that we are on the right track, we ensure that meetings were held every week or sometimes even twice! We had brunch over meeting and chats with coffee to maintain a friendly relationship alongside working in a project. This made us feel more comfortable working in a team and would expect this interaction to continue when the undergraduates are on board.
Posted 29 Mar 2020 14:28
Discussions have been ongoing to organize a Clock Tower visit with the team. As the restoration of the Town Hall has moved to the construction phase in March, further considerations in terms of safety and capacity will be implied hence the confirmation for the tour is yet to be confirmed. However, the initial thoughts were to be within the 3rd week of March.
Posted 29 Mar 2020 14:33
At the end of the intensive weeks, we are planning a display and hands on workshop in the Central Library. The team will be setting up a space in the library to conduct the workshop. The general public is welcomed to join the session. Along with this, the team will approach the library users to engage with the activity and also to hand on the paper toy leaflets as a means of promoting the Town Hall. The tetrisceptional model will also be displayed to allow the public to interact with.

The discussions have been ongoing however subject to the availability of the Central Library.
Posted 29 Mar 2020 14:37