The four acres – two blocks – of Courthouse Square were donated to Halton County in 1853 by land developer Hugh Foster.
The Courthouse – today the Town Hall – was completed in 1855 at a cost of 2975 pounds. Its massive rough faced stone blocks came from the nearby Niagara Escarpment. Its fortified appearance was to suggest the strength of the law. Its Norman entrance door, was intended to illustrate the forceful role it played in county life. Window tracery dignifies the Court Room windows while mullion-and-transom windows, under the flat Tudor labels, light ground floor offices. Two more are set in shallow enclosed recesses which marked the jury rooms in the upper stages of the battlemented towers. The High Victorian wing to the left was added – 1877.
In 1877 this section was added to the north for a new jail, and walls were erected to enclose the jail yard. (today the walls enclose a lovely garden).
All trials in Halton County were held here. Large crowds attended the public hangings of Thomas Corner in 1858 and Edward Keenan four years later. But the public was excluded for the execution of Michael O’Rourke in 1883, which took place behind the massive yard walls.
With the opening of a new courthouse on Steeles Ave., the Town purchased the original building and Victoria Park from Halton Region for $1.00. After a $3000,000 restoration the 19th century landmark became Milton’s new Town Hall in 1985.
Hugh Foster Hall to the south of the Court House was originally the Land Registry Office, the building was restored by the Town in the 1980’s at a cost of $600,000. It is used by the municipality and rented to many organizations and individuals for meetings and special events.
The Victoria Park Square landscape on the west side of the building has recently been updated to highlight and encourage more community use and awareness.
Special historic features are showcased in the Park: The Band Shell, German Field Piece, Soldiers’ Memorial, Memorial Bell and the Old Water Fountain used for humans and horses which sat on Main St. in from of the original Town Hall at 251 Main.