Golden Jubilee Fountain

Location: Keppel & George Streets, Machattie Park, Bathurst, NSW

To commemorate Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee, a drinking fountain was erected in November 1888 by the Women and Girls of Bathurst. It was located on Russell Street between the Kings Parade and the courthouse. Flags were suspended across the street in celebration, and the ceremony was attended by a large audience which was entertained by a band. Mrs. McHattie presented the gift of a fountain to Mayor Webb. Following the advent of the motor vehicle, it became an obstacle and was relocated to Machattie Park.

The 18 ft. drinking fountain was a customization of number 27 manufactured by Walter Macfarlane & Co. at the Saracen Foundry, Glasgow. The design was well suited for Street Crossings, Squares, Market Places, etc., as it afforded drinking accommodation for a large number of horses and drivers, and effectively lit a wide space, with the least possible obstruction to other traffic.

It provided a drinking trough for horses with a small basin for dogs at ground level. The trough was a circular cast iron basin supported on legs in the form of horses’ hooves. The central stanchion supported the structure which was seated on a circular plinth. A central fluted column was capped with a central lamp and four additional lamps on arm extensions. A shield on the post offered inscription. Four projecting tendrils suspended cups allowing humans to drink from the spouting water whilst horses drank from the large basin.

The structure was part of a Heritage study in 1990 and 1997, and was reviewed again in 2006. It was listed on the State Heritage Register in 2007 as a decorative and rare item of Victorian street furniture of historical, cultural and aesthetic significance.


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