MERCER ART GALLERY

1991 - ?

Mercer Art Gallery

The Mercer Gallery is located in the historic Harrogate Promenade rooms, one of the first spa buildings erected in the town. The Promenade Rooms opened on 16 June 1806 as a venue for visitors to socialise to a backdrop of organ music. In 1839 it was renamed the Victoria Reading Rooms and Library and was used as a venue for public gatherings such as lectures and meetings. In 1900, it was transformed into an elegant theatre, welcoming to its stage such luminaries of the art world as Oscar Wilde, Sarah Bernhardt, and Lily Langtry. It then became the Harrogate Town Hall before serving as the District's housing benefits office in the 1980s and in 1989 the Council paid to convert the basement into proper storage for the town's collection of Art, which had till then been inadequately housed in the Library and the ground floor, was given to the then Curator, Pat Clegg, to turn into a Gallery which opened in 1991. In 2001 the historic building was restored and reopened as the Mercer Art Gallery, Swan Road, Harrogate. The gallery takes its name from the painter Sidney Agnew Mercer, who was born in Ipswich but spent most of his life in Yorkshire and whose sons donated 50,000 towards the cost of restoring the Promenade Rooms.





Works by This Artist