Tag Archives: 16 Cook Street

16 Cook Street: Unremarkable address; remarkable architecture

From the outside, 16 Cook Street is an unremarkable building perhaps. When I was growing up in Liverpool, its doors were shut: an ordinary shop-and-office block. You would never guess what’s inside. More genius by the architect Peter Ellis, in fact.

These days, I am delighted to see, they keep the main door to 16 Cook Street open so you can go in. What’s more, they know they have a Peter Ellis building in plain sight and have put up fancy posters and all, advertising its heritage come-hither.

Notice at the top of the public stairs at 16 Cook Street

Come inside and see…

The star of this 1866 building is its spiral staircase, cantilevered out from the main building and covered with sheets of glass. It’s a typical Peter-Ellis moment of “let in the light”.  He did. “You want a staircase? I’ll build you one you never dreamed of.”

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