A Building in an L-Shape
Architects Read and Macdonald of London designed Ralli Hall in a “restrained Renaissance style” which has also been described as “Wrenaissance” (i.e.Edwardian Baroque which relies more heavily on English than French Baroque motifs). It has been described as an “important” local landmark and a “fine composition”.
The building is l-shaped and occupies a corner site facing Station Approach and Denmark Villas. The main entrance is to the latter; the hall then stretches back along Station Approach. This elevation (facing north) has 11 bays in a 2–1–6–2 layout, while the east-facing entrance wing is a symmetrical composition with a 1–3–1 bay layout. The walls are of dark red brick in the English bond pattern; the hipped roof has clay tiles and prominent eaves, separated from the walls by a clearly articulated dentil cornice of painted timber; and the windows have stone mullions and transoms with leaded light glass. Small brick walls and iron railings surround the building and are included in English Heritage’s listing. The building provides a contrast in age and architectural style to the well-spaced, well-detailed 1860s houses of Denmark Villas, with their pale brickwork and stucco.
The east (Denmark Villas) elevation is dominated by a central hexagonal entrance porch topped by a balcony. An oriel window opens out on to this; to the left and right are stone garland motifs showing ad and 1913 respectively, and these are flanked by flat casement windows. Two more oriel windows are in the outermost bays. The bays are defined by brick pilasters, and the outermost oriel windows have open pediments above and richly decorated brackets below. The Ionic-columned stepped porch spans the centre three bays and leads to a recessed entrance with three sets of doors. Supported by the columns is a parapet with a dentil cornice and a centrally placed cartouche with the initials rh.
The north (Station Approach) elevation has the foundation plaque, which reads “this stone was laid / by STEPHEN ANDREW RALLI grandson of / STEPHEN RALLI in memory of whom / this hall was erected by his wife / 14th April 1913″. In the third bay from the left (east) is a secondary entrance with a semicircular gable across which the dentil cornice continues. Below this gable is a largeoculus. The other windows have stone mullions and transoms, and the walls are supported by external buttresses.
[With reference to Wikipedia]
Community centre. Dated 1913. Architects Read and Macdonald of London for Mrs Stephen Ralli, builders Chapman, Lowry and Puttock. Wrenaissance style. Red brick laid in English bond, hipped clay tile roof with upswept eaves and strongly moulded wooden dentil cornice, brick stacks. L-plan fronting Denmark Villas with long return of the assembly hall onto Station Approach… click here to read more