The alhóndiga is the place where the poorer neighbours were supplied, lending them wheat when they could not buy it, or selling them kneaded bread at a price below the market in times of hardship. It also provided wheat for seed to the farmers, both for their own land and for the land leased to the Chapter. It housed the warehouses of the Cabildo, especially for the surplus crops; but it also had the administrative and control units of different economic activities of the Island.
It has also had other uses. It was a prison during the Civil War (1809), a party court, a military barracks and an inn. In the 20th century, it housed the Civil Guard, the machine-gun company’s barracks, a hospital during the 1918 flu, a school and a courthouse.
Built between 1705 and 1709, as indicated in the inscription on the cover, “reigning Felipe V…” It is a facade reformed in the neoclassical style, in the mid-nineteenth century, finished with a large stone cornice and a triangular pediment on the parapet that hides the roof. The project had been commissioned to the architect Manuel de Oraá, with the intention of converting the building into a theatre. It currently houses municipal offices, and its interior may preserve part of the structure of the original building.