Golden Jubilee Fountain

Location: Jubilee Gardens, Congleton, Cheshire, England

A combination drinking fountain and horse trough was donated to the town by Mrs. Howard of Brereton Hall in 1887 to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee. It was originally erected on Swan Bank at the junction of Duke Street and Mill Street (the market place) and was connected to the town water supply.

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It became an obstacle to traffic in 1936 and was relocated to the end of Mill Street in order to build a roundabout. No longer connected to the water supply the structure was used as a signpost and later removed to the corporation yard near Holmes Chapel Road. In reaction to public concern, Alderman Barton proposed that the fountain be relocated to Mill Green where it remained until 1961.

Judged to be a traffic hazard when it was damaged by a vehicle, it was repaired and moved to Congleton Park in 1969 not far from the Jubilee Pavilion, at the edge of the playing field next to the old tennis courts.

It was relocated to the Jubilee Gardens within the park after restoration by local engineering firm S. J. A. Dale & Son.

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The fountain is a customized structure containing several design elements by Walter Macfarlane’s Saracen Foundry in Glasgow. Seated on a circular stone plinth, the wide base is in the form of a St. Andrew’s cross with four lion jambs supporting four elaborately decorated quatrefoil basins for horses, four smaller demi-lune basins for humans and troughs at ground level for dogs. It is similar to font design number 18. The stanchion is decorated with acanthus and floral relief. Four consoles protrude from a circular fluted shaft (lamp pillar number 45) to suspend drinking cups on chains. A dedication shield bore the inscription; Whosoever drinketh of this water I shall give him will never thirst. The lamp pillar was number 40 capped with a crown and finial. Roofed in with scales of opal glass the lantern cast the light downwards (design number 223).  The lantern was later replaced by a glass globe enclosed within a horizontal and vertical band.

Glossary:

  • Acanthus, one of the most common plant forms (deeply cut leaves) to make foliage ornament and decoration
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Demi-lune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Fluted Shaft, a long rounded groove decorating the shaft of a column
  • Jamb, a projecting vertical post containing sculpture
  • 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
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Posted on January 5, 2016, in Architecture, Cast Iron, England, Memorial Drinking Fountain, Queen Victoria Jubilee, Saracen Foundry and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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