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The British Market Hall: A Social and Architectural History Hardcover – 2 Aug 1999

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press; 1st Edition edition (2 Aug 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300060645
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300060645
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 22.2 x 29.2 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,321,295 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Amazon.com: 2 reviews
A comprehensive treatise on the origin and design of British Market Halls. 22 Dec 2010
By Chris New - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
For those having a particular and specialist interest in markets - and particularly market halls - this is a splendid and comprehensive treatise that is unmatched in my forty+ years' experience as a market manager, developer and market consultant.

In retrospect, it appears strange that it has taken scholars from Yale University to study such iconic British subject matter, bearing in mind that the phenomenon (and, indeed, invention) of market halls across Britain reflected the growing need of society for fresh food and goods to be sold in hygienic circumstances in an age when there had been mass movement of people to towns and cities from the countryside.

The authors consider in depth the history of markets, placing them in a social and cultural context, focusing particularly on the 19th century - when philanthropy, social and moral concern, the need for greater regulation of retail trade for the masses and civic pride all came together to create (in the authors' words) "one of the most remarkable accomplishments of Victorian architecture" - the British Market Hall.

These fine buildings were often the centre piece of urban renewal in such times, often indicating through their size and architectural quality the stature of towns and cities - and are a phenomenon that eventually led to the development of supermarkets, department stores and shopping malls.

The book (over 300 pages) lays out in significant detail the architecture, design and construction of many Victorian market halls, providing photographs and design layouts from around Britain - and the authors give overdue recognition in a consumerist age to the major prominence and importance of market halls to the cultural and social life of the nation.
Brilliant and fascinating historical narrative of British Market Halls 27 May 2011
By Karl - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The evolution of market halls in Britain, chronicled so brilliantly in this historical narrative, parallels their development on other continents. This book will be of particular interest to urban planners, and especially to those who recognize that market halls can be a valuable tool to spark urban redevelopment today. In their extensive research, the authors explore the significant impact market halls played on centralized food distribution, at a time when sanitation and transportation techniques were less developed. They effectively use photos of buildings that survived and architectural drawings to chronicle the evolution and illustrate operational techniques and urban planning issues. Surprisingly, the most interesting portions of the book were not about the buildings, but rather the social impact that market halls had on British culture. We taste the loss of the market hall experience every time we attend a day at the local farmers' market.

I could not put this book down.
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