St Ann’s Square Manchester

by | Jun 21, 2017 | History, Manchester |

St Ann’s Square is a major focal point for the city of Manchester. We know it today for its retail shops and market stalls however St Ann’s Square also has an intriguing history.

The area was once known as Acresfield, the earliest recording of which dates back to 1222. A fair was held annually in Acresfield, the purpose of this was to enable farmers to sell cattle, pigs and other farm animals. In the early 1700’s plans were announced for St Ann’s church to be built. It was declared that a proportion of the space should be reserved for the fair, this space became know as St Ann’s Square. The fair was a significant event for the community and remained in operation for over 650 years.

St Ann’s church is situated at the south end of the square and is one of only a few grade I listed buildings in the city centre. The Grade II listed Royal Exchange currently houses a theatre and a shopping arcade but was home to the Manchester Cotton Exchange for over two centuries.

St Ann’s Square is now lined with modern retail shops and is one of the locations used for the award winning Manchester Christmas Markets. Many other market stalls regularly operate from St Ann’s Square throughout the year including arts and craft stalls, French and German market stalls and a variety of different food stalls.

Now a fashionable shopping district, St Ann’s Square has an interesting and well remembered history. From its early beginnings to present day, St Ann’s Square remains one of the most iconic areas of Manchester City Centre.

What are your memories of St Ann’s Square? Get in touch and share your memories with us.

Emma is an experienced content writer. She enjoys exploring local history and writing about the past. If you have any stories or memories you would like to share, get in touch with us –