Extract from Discovering Old Huddersfield (1993-2002) by Gordon & Enid Minter:
The coming of the railway stimulated the commercial development of the hitherto empty land to the north of the Market Place and by 1849 a number of new streets had been proposed or laid out and several new buildings planned. Among the first of these was the George Hotel which was opened in the new Square in 1851. Built to replace the old George Inn in the Market Place the hotel is an impressive building, designed by William Wallen in an Italinate style to complement the classical facade of the railway station. The quality of the stonework is obvious and, nearly a century and a half later, is a fitting reminder of the excellent standards of the builder, Joseph Kaye.
It was at the George Hotel on 29th August 1895 that a meeting was held by the English Rugby Football Union to discuss payment to players for broken time and loss of wages at work. The meeting was a bitter one, no agreement was reached and consequently twenty clubs, of which Huddersfield was one, broke away from the English Union, with its strict emphasis on amateur status, to form the Northern Rugby Football Union, known later as the Rugby League.
Now, in the centenary year, after many meetings and following a proposed injection into the game of some £87 million by Sky Television, changes just as contentious have been approved by a majority of Rugby League officials. The new structure will consist of a super league of twelve clubs, a first division of eleven clubs (including Huddersfield) and a second division often clubs. After a shortened 1995-1996 season the new three tier system will begin in March 1996 and will be run thenceforth as a summer competition.
ST GEORGE'S SQUARE. The George Hotel. 1849-50. Architects William Wallen of London, and Charles Child of Todmorden, Yorkshire. Ashlar sandstone. Slate mansard roof. Ashlar stacks. 4 storeys and attics. Deeply moulded eaves cornice with console-shaped triglyphs, between which are paterae alternating with diamond-facetted panels. Rusticated ground floor. Moulded strings above ground and 1st floors. Moulded long and short quoins. Facade breaks forward slightly 6 ins away from corners. 7 ranges of sashes with glazing bars; those on ground floor with vermiculated quoins and keys: those on 1st floor with moulded and shouldered surrounds, cills on brackets, full entablatures, triangular pediments to bays 2 and 6, and segmental pediment on console-shaped scrolls to bay 4; those on 2nd floor with moulded and shouldered surrounds and cills on brackets; those on 3rd floor with moulded and shouldered surrounds, 7 attic dormers with casements and segmental pediments. John William street facade. Similar fenestration. 3 bays. Central 1st floor window has ashlar balcony on 5 deep moulded consoles, with moulded handrail, panelled newels, balustrade composed of intersecting stone circles, and badge with St George in relief. West facade. 3 bays and one to north slightly set back. Similar fenestration, but ground floor windows have plain surrounds and all 1st floor windows have long scrolled consoles to cills. Set back bay has semi-circular on 1st floor with moulded cornice and parapet: 3 windows, same as others but without entablature. Extension to north. 3 storeys and attics. Eaves cornice. 5 bays, of which outer 2 have windows in plain surrounds and 3 inner ones break forward with rusticated quoins. 3 arched windows linked by moulded impost on ground floor; 5 segment-headed sashes with glazing bars in moulded and shouldered frame with keystones on 1st floor; three windows with moulded and shouldered surrounds on 2nd floor. Railings round area at west end of south front, and west front. Cast iron. Baluster finials. History: Built by Sir John William Ramsden, 5th Bart, to replace the George Inn, which stood on the north side of the Market Place, and was re-erected in St Peter's Street when John William Street was built.