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The History of the Jerome and Carlisle Buildings

Built in 1883 the Jerome and Carlisle Buildings have had many uses throughout the years, from court rooms to an independent cinema, this historic Grade II listed building is a jewel in the crown of Victoria Street.

Now taken over by Signature Living to be transformed into a luxury 100 bedroom hotel celebrating the life of Everton legend Dixie Dean, we look back at the history of the building and how it’s been used over the years.

Dixie Dean Hotel

Where it all Began

Between the years of 1883 and 1885, the Jerome and Carlisle Buildings were designed by architect John Clarke on the instruction of iron founder H Rankin. The Jerome Building was built first in 1883, followed by the Carlisle Building in 1885. Both of the buildings are identical above the ground floor and really form a single composition.

Rankin’s Union Foundry was close by in Manchester Street, and it supplied some of the ironwork used in these and other neighbouring buildings.

Built in the Gothic style, these buildings are made up of Red Ruabon brick from North Wales with red Runcorn stone dressings from Cheshire, which was a popular combination in 19th century Liverpool.

Made up of 3 storeys, with a basement and an attic, this building was originally used for offices and storage space and would have been let out to a number of tenants.

Jerome and Carlisle Building

A Magistrates Court

A little time after it was built, Liverpool Magistrates Court took over the building and transformed many of the offices and store rooms into court rooms and file rooms.

The building, along with the adjacent Crown Buildings, housed seven courts in total and primarily dealt with low-level crimes and road traffic offences.

Over the years following hundreds of cases would have been heard inside the Gothic Victoria Street venue.

In 2013 the Magistrates Court left the Jerome and Carlisle Buildings to move to Derby Square, which is where the city’s lower court is now entirely based.

A Hub for Creativity

Shortly after the Magistrates Court left,  a creative community group called Creative Space Team took over the building and transformed the various rooms into art galleries and installations, furniture and vintage shops and creative spaces.

However, many of the court rooms where left in tact and there is still evidence of the long narrow corridors leading to numerous small former courts, which are still visibly signposted, witness stands and press benches.

There was also a dance studio, recording studio and tattoo parlour.

An Independent Cinema

In 2015, an independent cinema company called A Small Cinema converted one of the court rooms into a pop-up 60-seater movie theatre.

a small cinema

The cinema specialised in alternative, non-mainstream films and worked in association with film societies including Liverpool Radical Film Festival and the city’s Food for Real Festival.

Based on the ground floor of the former magistrates’court, this quirky cinema was staffed by volunteers and proved to be popular until the building was put up for sale in 2017.

The Future

Signature Living announced this week that it has acquired the Grade II listed site and will begin work in September to develop it into the Dixie Dean hotel – celebrating the life of the Everton great.

The 100 bedroom luxury hotel will form part of the first ever ‘Football Quarter’ with The Shankly Hotel situated opposite.

Dixie Dean family
The Dixie Dean Family

A tribute to one of the greatest players Everton has ever seen, this hotel promises to be one of the most popular and magnificent in the city.

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