Overtoun Park Jubilee Fountain

Location: Overtoun Park, Mill St, Cambuslang, Burgh of Rutherglen, Lanarkshire

Rutherglen’s Jubilee Fountain was originally erected at the west end of Main Street (the Gushet) in 1897 to celebrate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee. Due to the increasing presence of the motor car it was relocated to Overtoun Park in 1911 to accommodate traffic flow. It was registered as a Category B listed building on 4 April 1974.

The canopied drinking fountain is design number 20, an elaborate 18 feet by 4 feet fountain, sold by Walter Macfarlane & Co, and manufactured at the Saracen Foundry, Possilpark, Glasgow, Scotland. Seated on an octagonal plinth, the open filigree canopy is supported by eight columns with griffin terminals which are positioned over capitals with foliage frieze above square bases.

The highly decorated cusped arches are trimmed with rope mouldings. Cartouches contained within each lunette display cranes, the Rutherglen Coat of Arms, and two memorial shields: In Commemoration / Of The / Diamond Jubilee / Of / Queen Victoria / 1837-97, and Erected / By Public Subscription / Alexander Edmiston / Provost / George Gray / Town Clerk

On each side, arch faceplates provided a flat surface for an inscription using raised metal letters; often the useful monition, Keep the pavement dry. Civic virtues such as temperance were often extolled in inscriptions on drinking fountains. The ribbed dome is open filigree decorated with dove and flower relief. The internal capitals contain flowers, statues of owls on enlarged column heads and lion mascarons on internal shields. The structure is surmounted by an imperial crown finial.

Under the canopy stands the font (design number 18.) A circular shaft, ornamented with water lilies, rests on a wide base with canted corners. Four lion jambs support four highly decorated quatrefoil basins. Rising from the centre is a pyramid shaped stanchion decorated with swan and bird decoration. A kylix-shaped lamp terminal with four consoles offer drinking cups suspended by chains. Sitting atop the lamp was a bust of Queen Victoria which was removed in 1992.

Glossary

  • Canted corner, an angled surface which cuts of a corner
  • Capital, the top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • Cartouche, a structure or figure, often in the shape of an oval shield or oblong scroll, used as an architectural or graphic ornament or to bear a design or inscription
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Cusped Arch, the point of intersection of lobed or scalloped forms
  • Filigree, fine ornamental work
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Fret, running or repeated ornament
  • Frieze, the horizontal part of a classical moulding just below the cornice, often decorated with carvings
  • Griffin, winged lion denotes vigilance and strength, guards treasure and priceless possessions
  • Jamb, a projecting vertical post containing sculpture
  • Kylix, a Grecian style drinking cup
  • Lunette, the half-moon shaped space framed by an arch, often containing a window or painting
  • Mascaron, a decorative element in the form of a sculpted face or head of a human being or an animal
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests
  • Quatrefoil, a type of decorative framework consisting of a symmetrical shape which forms the overall outline of four partially-overlapping circles of the same diameter
  • Stanchion, upright bar or post providing support
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal
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