George Faulkner Armitage

Architect, Designer
Place of Birth
Longsight Manchester

  • Born: September 1849
  • Died: 10 November 1937

Born at Longsight, in September 1849, George Faulkner Armitage was the fifth son of William Armitage J.P.  The Armitage family was to become one of the most important in Altrincham, partners in the firm of Armitage and Ward later to become Armitage & Rigby, with cotton mills in both Manchester and Warrington. They were leading members of the Bowdon Downs Congregational Church and close associates of the Mills family. William Armitage was the first chairman of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank, founded by John Mills and his third son, also William, married Margaret, the Mills' second daughter.  In 1854 William Armitage bought Mount Pleasant in the north west of Altrincham, later to be called Townfield (where Townfield Gardens apartments now stand) with six acres of ground. The house was later described as an Italianate villa, William having greatly added to it over the years.

G. Faulkner Armitage lived and worked from Stamford House in Church Street, Altrincham, originally the Stamford Arms and Bowling Green Hotel. By his own account he studied his skills in France, Italy and Switzerland as well as in England. It is to be hoped further research can bring more details to this account. In 1879 he married his cousin, Sarah Ann, the second daughter of John Rigby of Altrincham. John Rigby, through his wife, Sarah Beaumont was uncle to architects Richard Fletcher Beaumont (qv) and his brother, James William Beaumont (qv). G Faulkner Armitage later purchased Sandiway House, an adjacent residence with 1 acre of land. In 1901 Armitage employed a staff of six - three gardeners, a coachman, laundry maid and house maid. Although a strictly Congregational household, with prayers “de rigeur” each morning, the house also played host to many family and social gatherings which would include sports and musical concerts. He was Mayor of Altrincham 1913-1919 and Justice of the Peace. After his death in 1937, Stamford House was put to a variety of uses but was accidentally destroyed by fire in 1945 while in the occupation of the 1st Battalion of the Cheshire Home Guard, the site approximately now occupied by Hamilton House next to the Cresta Court Hotel.

G F Armitage acted as both architect and craftsman in domestic and church interiors and specialised in built-in fitments and painted decoration. He designed and furnished many large country houses and London clubs. 1887-92 Barry Parker was articled to Faulkner and remained with him, acting as Clerk of Works 1892-4 before leaving to set up his own practice in Buxton. In the 1880's the office was run by his cousin Armitage Rigby (qv) before his removal to the Isle of Man. In 1899 London showrooms were opened on Clifford Street, which were managed by another cousin, John Rigby and Faulkner’s nephew, John Basil (Jack) Armitage. After his return to Altrincham in c1906, Jack continued to work at Stamford House and by 1909 had been made a partner in the firm, the intention being that he would take over on Faulkner Armitage’s planned retirement in 1914. However, Jack was killed in France in 1917 and another partner, Robert Harrop Wolff ultimately took over the firm. In its latter years, under various permutations of name, the firm mainly concentrated on cabinet making and furniture sales, eventually, by the 1980s existing solely as a furniture shop on John Dalton Street, Manchester under the name of Shaw and Alexander, finally closing in the 1980s.

[Incorporating additional information from Gill Fitzpatrick. 6 April 2019]




Buildings and Designs

Building Name District Town/City County Country
"Normanby" Bonville Road Bowdon Cheshire   Bowdon  GMCA  England
Needlework Studio Murenger House Newport   Newport  Monmouthshire  England
Exhibition of House Furnishings: Exchange Street   Manchester  GMCA  England
Grand Moorish Bazaar Free Trade Hall Manchester   Manchester  GMCA  England
Drinking Fountain: Whitworth Gardens (Sackville Park)   Manchester  GMCA  England
Pendrell Hall Codsall Staffordshire   Codsall  Staffordshire  England
Scott House Memorial Home for Crippled Children Rochdale Norden  Rochdale  GMCA  England
War Memorial Dunham Road   Altrincham  GMCA  England
Porch: Bowden Downs Congregational Church Bowdon  Trafford  GMCA  England
Manchester Jubilee Exhibition - Fire grate to Council Chamber   Old Trafford  GMCA  England
Council Chamber British Section of the Paris Exhibition   Paris    France
Oxford Union Society Rooms   Oxford  Oxfordshire  England
Congregational Church Warrington   Warrington  Cheshire  England
Pullwyke Pullwood Bay Lake Windermere   Ambleside  Cumbria  England
Brockhampton Court Herefordshire     Herefordshire  England
House at Caerleon Monmouthshire   Caerleon  Monmouthshire  Wales
"West Down" Hindhead   Hindhead  Surrey  England
East Lodge to Bramall Hall, Bramhall Lane South, Bramhall Bramhall  Stockport  GMCA  England
West Lodge to Bramall Hall, Hall Road, Bramhall Bramhall  Stockport  GMCA  England
Bramall Hall, Bramhall Bramhall  Stockport  GMCA  England