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St. Peter's Square

Feel the tide of history at this central square, the site of the famous Peterloo Massacre and home to several impressive heritage-listed civic buildings.

Head to St. Peter’s Square to admire the interesting architecture of heritage-listed buildings, have a drink, join a small-scale event or sit down for some people-watching. As the site of a political protest which ended in tragedy, and home to a cenotaph remembering those who lost their lives in World War I, St. Peter’s Square can also be a sobering experience.

It was at this site, on August 16, 1819, that cavalry charged into a crowd of 60,000 people gathered for a peaceful protest for political reforms. Hundreds were injured and 11 killed. The “Peterloo Massacre” sent shockwaves through the country and is still a big part of Manchester’s identity. A plaque on what is now a large hotel commemorates the incident and a bigger, contemporary memorial was designed in 2013.

See the iconic circular Manchester Central Library at the square’s west end. This impressive building, and much of the square itself, is undergoing extensive refurbishment, so check the City Council website for accessibility information prior to your visit. As at mid 2013, the Peace Garden and the Messenger of Peace sculpture still feature on the square.

The other big landmark on St. Peter’s Square is the Midland Hotel, one of Manchester’s grandest hotels. Admire its splendid Edwardian Baroque-style architecture from 1903 or enjoy fine dining in one of its restaurants. Make sure you’re dressed for the occasion; The Beatles were once famously refused access because of their “inappropriate attire”! German dictator Adolf Hitler is believed to have considered the hotel his Nazi headquarters for Britain and many believe this is why this area was spared from German bombings during World War II.

St. Peter’s Square is pedestrian friendly. If you come by car, find an undercover car park by looking for the big NCP (National Car Park) signs as you approach the square. Street parking is notoriously difficult and expensive in the city center, so walk, take public transport, or catch a taxi if you can. The square has its own Metrolink tram station and is on many bus routes.


Guide to Exploring St. Peter's Square


Top Hotel Deals

See all 1,272 Properties near St. Peter's Square
INNSiDE by Melia Manchester £59
INNSiDE by Melia Manchester

INNSiDE by Melia Manchester

1 First Street, Manchester, England
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Manchester City Centre, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Deansgate Locks and Bridgewater Hall. Manchester Palace Theatre and Deansgate are also within 10 minutes. Deansgate-Castlefield Station and Manchester Deansgate Station are within a 5-minute walk.

    Hotel Gotham
    Hotel Gotham

    Hotel Gotham

    100 King Street, Manchester, England
       
      5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Manchester City Centre, this luxury hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Manchester Art Gallery, Piccadilly Gardens, and Manchester Arndale. The Gay Village and Albert Square are also within 10 minutes. Mosley Street Station and Market Street Station are within a 5-minute walk.

      easyHotel Manchester £19
      easyHotel Manchester

      easyHotel Manchester

      33 Dale Street, Manchester, England
         
        2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Manchester City Centre, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Greater Manchester Police Museum and Piccadilly Gardens. The Gay Village and Canal Street are also within 10 minutes. Picadilly Gardens Station is only a 4-minute walk and Market Street Station is 6 minutes.

        The Midland - Manchester
        The Midland - Manchester

        The Midland - Manchester

        16 Peter Street, Manchester, England
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Manchester City Centre, this spa hotel is steps away from Manchester Central Library, St. Peter's Square and Albert Hall. Bridgewater Hall and Albert Square are also within 5 minutes. St Peters Square Station is only a 2-minute walk and Deansgate-Castlefield Station is 7 minutes.

          Dakota Manchester £117
          Dakota Manchester

          Dakota Manchester

          29 Ducie Street, Manchester, England
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Manchester City Centre, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Canal Street, The Gay Village and Piccadilly Gardens. Manchester Palace Theatre and Manchester Arndale are also within 15 minutes. Picadilly Station is 6 minutes by foot and Picadilly Gardens Station is 8 minutes.

            Whitworth Locke £65
            Whitworth Locke

            Whitworth Locke

            74 Princess St., Manchester, England
               
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Manchester City Centre, this aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of The Gay Village and Albert Square. O2 Apollo Manchester and Manchester Arena are also within 1 mi (2 km). Manchester Oxford Road Station and Manchester Manchester Oxford Road Station are within a 5-minute walk.

              Malmaison Manchester £70
              Malmaison Manchester

              Malmaison Manchester

              1-3 Piccadilly, Manchester, England
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Manchester City Centre, this spa hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Canal Street, The Gay Village, and Piccadilly Gardens. Manchester Palace Theatre and Manchester Arndale are also within 15 minutes. Picadilly Station and Picadilly Gardens Station are within a 5-minute walk.

                Manchester Marriott Victoria & Albert Hotel £63
                Manchester Marriott Victoria & Albert Hotel

                Manchester Marriott Victoria & Albert Hotel

                Water Street, Manchester, England
                   
                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Manchester City Centre, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Museum of Science and Industry, The Gay Village and Manchester Arena. National Football Museum and Manchester Arndale are also within 1 mi (2 km). Manchester Salford Central Station is 7 minutes by foot and Deansgate-Castlefield Station is 12 minutes.