Hornsey Town Hall
Arts Centre

Find out more about Hornsey Town Hall, the history of the Grade-II* Listed building and its astonishing story in Crouch End.

Currently undergoing an extensive £30m restoration and refurbishment, Hornsey Town Hall will soon become a key cultural venue in North London.

The building will reopen its doors as a fully-fledged Arts Centre and will showcase a number of modern, future-proofed and flexible performance and event spaces, workspace, as well as hospitality offerings, including a hotel and rooftop bar.

Managed and operated by cultural place-making and regeneration specialists TIME + SPACE , Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre will provide cutting-edge facilities in a welcoming environment for people to work, socialise and enjoy for generations to come.

More information on our multiple partners and sponsors will be announced soon.

Our Heritage

It all started in 1933 when a competition was held by the Hornsey Borough Council to find an architect to oversee the building of their new offices in Crouch End. Reginald Uren’s design won the architectural competition out of over 200 entries.

The doors opened to the now modernist art-deco icon, Hornsey Town Hall, in 1935. Uren was later awarded the RIBA bronze award, naming his design the best building in London of that year.

Building Dec 1935 1
A portrait view of a well-lit marble sitting area inside Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre.

The building is deeply rooted into culture, with performances from Queen, Electric Light Orchestra, The Kinks and Dexys Midnight Runners over the years.

Equally, Hornsey Town Hall has strong links as a film and television location, featuring in dozens of feature films and series. You may indeed spot the building in The Crown, Bohemian Rhapsody, Killing Eve, Peep Show,  and many more.

See the timeline below, which takes you through the building’s rich history including its origins as the Hornsey Borough Council headquarters from 1935 to 1965.

Hornsey Council purchased a plot of land adjacent to
the Broadway.
RIBA Assessor Charles Cowles Voysey wrote the following appraisal of Uren’s design: "the front elevation has dignity and definite civic character. It is cleverly designed to make the best of the difficult shape of the forecourt, and it will have an interesting view of The Broadway."
A picture from 1935 showing the Duke of Kent attending the official opening of Hornsey Town Hall.
The Duke and Dutchess of Kent attended the official opening of the Town Hall. The Duke was introduced to a guard of honour formed by members of the British Legion of Muswell Hill and Hornsey.
The Hornsey civil defence service volunteers stood outside the Town Hall as war was announced.
Hornsey Town Hall was central to post war celebrations and a victory parade marched along Crouch End Broadway. While around 80% of buildings in Hornsey were estimated to have been damaged or destroyed, the Town Hall escaped damage.
A newspaper article of The 1950 General Election results.
The General Election results were announced on the Committee Room balcony. The event was filmed by the BBC.
A Union Jack flag floating at half mast.
The Union Jack was flown at half mast at the death of the King.
The building was temporarily closed due to cracks found in the outside of The Assembly Hall. However, it was found to be subsidence.
Councillors held a meeting and decided that they were going to move their headquarters to Wood Green. As a result, borough 31 (consisting of Tottenham, Hornsey and Wood Green) was to be called Haringey. The Town Hall was to be used as a venue for music, talks, theatre and broadcasts.
Compere and the Pirate Radio DJ John Peel presented the Liverpool Scene, a poetry rock band.
A Pink Fairies and Pretty Things were supported by Queen at one of their first ever gigs.
Pink Fairies and Pretty Things were supported by Queen at one of their first ever gigs.
Dexys Midnight Runners played a concert.
Gerry Adams (Sinn Fein) spoke at a packed public meeting.
Princess Diana visited 1930’s Public Health Clinic in the HTH Car Park to open an HIV Centre within it.
Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre was started by ANA – the building was used for silent discos, yoga, workspace, gallery space and community events.
A Computer Generated image of Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre on a sunny day
Hornsey Town Hall was confirmed to be restored and reopened as a “future-proofed, modern Arts Centre” – curated and operated by The Time + Space Co., the urban regeneration specialist.
Hornsey Town Hall closes to go through a major redevelopment.
Illustration of Hornsey Town Hall architect, Reginald Uren.
A competition was held by the Council to find an architect to oversee the building of their new offices in Crouch End. Reginald Uren’s design won the architectural competition out of over 200 entries.
Uren was awarded the RIBA bronze award naming Hornsey Town Hall the best building in London that year.
The building became home to council functions including public libraries, education, public works, finance, housing and town planning.
A vintage portrait of Dave Crowley with his boxing gloves on.
Victory was won by lightweight Dave Crowley over Bombardier Ken Barrett in a boxing match held in The Assembly Hall.
War prisoner courts were held in The Mayor’s Chamber.
Big Band dances were held on Saturday nights. Along with his band, Harry Pitch – the harmonica player best known for playing the theme tune to Last of the Summer Wine – had a residency and played until the 1960’s.
EMI used the Town Hall for live recordings between 1956 and 1957.
A vintage poster of the Valentine’s Day concert which starred local Muswell Hill group The Ray Davies Quartet, who would go on to become The Kinks.
A concert on Valentine’s Day starred local Muswell Hill group The Ray Davies Quartet, who would go on to become The Kinks. Davies has referred to this show at Hornsey Town Hall as their first important gig.
The black and white image shows a group of people are protesting outside Hornsey Town Hall.
Rebellion and protest was in the air. Hornsey College of Art staged a sit in and Hornsey Town Hall was graffitied by Stuart Christie who wrote ‘Paris today – Hornsey Tomorrow’ across the walls. Although the council had it removed the following day, a trace of it remained for many years.
The Kinks, Fairport Convention, Jethro Tull played concerts at the Town Hall.
Hornsey High School and Weston Park held their speech day.
Dennis Brown played a concert.
As the finance department agreed it would be too costly to keep the Town Hall open as a working building, it was closed.
Logo of BAFTA-winning series 'Peep Show'.
“Peep Show” title sequence for Channel 4’s BAFTA winning series was filmed outside the Town Hall. The first of several high profile film and tv shows were filmed, which has since earned HTH a reputation as an iconic film location.
Many bids were made for the future of Hornsey Town Hall. FEC (Far Eastern Consortium) applied for planning permission to restore the building and open a hotel, arts centre and 146 flats on the site. The Arts Centre was to be FEC’s top priority with a focus to keep community and the arts at the heart of the building.
CREATE event is held to celebrate the future of Hornsey Town Hall. The doors of the Town Hall are then closed in July and Ardmore, the appointed contractor, started the restoration.
HTH is due to reopen!

Our Community

We are committed to fulfilling the needs of our local community, facilitating a wide spectrum of community-focussed events, programmes and initiatives.

More information on our community engagement and initiatives will be announced soon, delivering on the community use agreement of Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre.