External Grandeur of the Council House

The Council House is constructed of Portland Stone from the same quarry used by Christopher Wren for St. Paul's Cathedral. The keystone of the central arch in the entrance arcade was salvaged from a London church after the Great Fire of 1666, but lay unused for centuries on a Dorset beach.

The terrace overlooking the Old Market Square has eight massive columns, above are 21 figures representing the activities of the Council, also modelled by Joseph Else, principal of the Nottingham School of Art. The frieze behind depicts traditional local crafts such as bell founding, mining and alabaster carving.

The Dome

One of the building's most striking features is definitely the great dome. This rises 200 feet above ground level and is visible for miles. The dome houses the chiming clock and Little John, a ten-and-a-half ton striking bell which is reputed to have the deepest tone in the country.

The Lions

Situated at either side of the steps leading to the front entrance of The Council House are two stone lions. Affectionately known as Leo and Oscar these two regal figures were sculpted by Joseph Else, principal of the Nottingham School of ArtOpens new window.

The Lions, like the Council House, have become etched in the psyche of local people who will probably have clambered over them as children and used them as a meeting point with friends and lovers.

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