St. Peter's Church

St. Peter's Church was built by James Wyat in 1788.  It stood where St. Peter's Square is today until 1907 when, like a number of city centre churches, it closed because of dropping city centre population numbers and church attendances.

A stone cross was erected in St. Peter's Square to mark the location of the church.

In the images below you can see St. Peters at the far end of Oxford Street.

As you can see from the Adshead Map extract below, shown with the permission of Chetham's Library, the square was very different in the days when the church dominated it.  Below the map is a photograph of the square after the church was demolished and the commemorative cross, by Temple Moore, was erected.  The cross was unveiled in 1908.

Not far from St. Peter's Church was St. Peter's Field, where the Free Trade Hall was constructed.  It was on that field that thousands of people gathered on August 16th, 1819 to listen to speakers in favour of Parliamentary Reform.  The local magistrates ordered mounted cavalry to disperse the crowd, an action which resulted in the deaths of 15 people and left more than 400 people injured.  The crowd was composed of men and women many of them textile workers some who had walked long distances to get to Manchester from the surrounding mill towns.