Tag Archives: East Lothian

Innerwick Jubilee Fountain and Trough

Location: Innerwick, East Lothian, Scotland

At the roadside heading west from Innerwick Village to Thurston House is a memorial drinking fountain and horse trough commissioned by Richard Hunter of Thurston to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee in 1887.

The spring fed fountain is housed in a Dutch gable end of red sandstone ashlar. Originally, it was surmounted with a globe finial which has since been lost or destroyed, due to vandalism or negligence.

On the left side of the base is an arrow shaped symbol carved into the stone. Used in ordnance survey it is known as a trig point.

A slate plaque is engraved in the gable head: A Man Of Kindness / To His Beast Is Kind / But Brutal Actions / Show A Brutal Mind / Remember! He Who Made Thee / Made The Brute / Who Gave Thee Speech And Reason / Formed Him Mute / He Can’t Complain / But God’s All-Seeing Eye / Beholds Thy Cruelty / And Hears His Cry / He Was Designed Thy Servant / Not Thy Drudge / Remember! His Creator / Is Thy Judge

The cast iron drinking fountain is number 16 (3 feet 3 inches high and 2 feet 7 inches wide) manufactured by the Saracen Foundry in Glasgow. The wall mounted drinking fountain is in the form of a round arch trimmed with highly decorated fret detail and rope moulding. The recessed interior of the arch contains a shell lunette from which a tap protrudes, and a dedication in bas-relief, VR Jubilee 1887. A single drinking cup on a chain was formerly suspended from a palmette finial.

Seated on a concave base, the animal trough contains the manufacturer’s stamp, Walter Macfarlane & Co. / Saracen Foundry / Glasgow. This trough is casting number 24 with a basin at ground level for dogs.

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In the year 2000 the cast iron structures were repainted, and the trough was used as a flower planter. Although recorded as a Category B Historic Listing on 17 May 1989, the memorial has been neglected and is now overgrown.

Status per 2016

Glossary:

  • Ashlar, finely cut stone
  • Bas-relief, sculpted material that has been raised from the background to create a slight projection from the surface
  • Dutch Gable (also known as Flemish gable), a gable whose sides have a shape made up of one or more curves
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Fret, running or repeated ornament
  • Lunette, the half-moon shaped space framed by an arch, often containing a window or painting
  • Palmette, a decorative motif resembling the fan shaped leaves of a palm tree
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Brown Memorial Fountain

Location: Lodge/Court Street, Haddington, East Lothian, Scotland

Cast by Walter Macfarlane’s Saracen Foundry in Glasgow, this drinking fountain was erected in 1924 from a monetary donation by Mrs. Brown to the town; hence the historical reference of the Brown Memorial Fountain.

Design number 19 (10’ 10” high) was seated on a two tier circular plinth. It has a wide base in the form of a St. Andrew’s cross, on which is set a circular shaft, ornamented with water lilies. Four lion jambs support four highly decorated quatrefoil basins. The stanchion and central column are decorated with floral relief. Four tendrils (still visible) protruded from the column to suspend drinking cups on chains. The capital supports the finial, a statue of Samson. Symbolism was popular in Victorian times. Lions are symbolic of guardianship and Samson is symbolic of strength.

During restoration in 1998 the drinking fountain was converted to an ornamental fountain and now rests on a square plinth set inside a large circular stone basin. A green cast iron railing acts as a barrier and a decorative element. The design consists of thistles alternating with gold stars. Four large brass taps have been added from which water pours into the basins. Lights are positioned around the circumference of the stone basin and jets spray water towards the structure.

Tourists are often tempted to throw coins into the basin wishing for good luck. These funds are periodically donated to charity. As the fountain is in the town centre, it is occasionally the target of pranksters. One highly successful prank involved soap powder which led to suds pouring onto the High Street.

The fountain was listed a category C historic building in 1977. It was cleaned and repainted in 1998.

Glossary

  • Capital, the top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • 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, an upright bar or post providing support

Dr. Balfour Memorial Fountain

Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

The drinking fountain located at Klondyke Street, Newcraighall, is unique in that it is not the sole work of one manufacturer.

Although this fountain is a design from George Smith & Co.’s Sun Foundry, their designs were acquired by the Lion Foundry of Kirkintilloch when the Sun Foundry closed in 1899. The structure is 9 feet 10 inches high, and consists of four columns with orb capitals rising from a single plinth to support a solid domed canopy. The interior column connectors to the dome were adorned with four descending dolphins, two of which are missing. Dolphins are symbolic guardians of all things water related.

Arch faceplates with drip fret detail offered a flat surface for inscriptions in raised metal letters; civic virtues such as temperance were extolled on many drinking fountains. Over each arch, cartouches within each lunette offer commemorative dedication or crests. The physical form of the dedication cartouche has been modified to accommodate the inscription: Erected By / The / People / Of This District / To Show Their Rich Esteem / For The Memory / Of / Dr Andrew Balfour / Who / For Thirty Years Took A Great Interest / In The Welfare Of This Village / Died 28th December / 1906 // Erected June / 1907. The dome finial is a two tiered vase with a spike.

The pillar font was manufactured by Glenfield and Kennedy of Kilmarnock and is a cylindrical fluted column. The manufacturer’s stamp is visible on two sides. A basin is located at the base for the use of small animals.

The drinking fountain was erected in 1907 at Whitehill Street to commemorate Dr. Andrew Balfour who had died the previous year. As detailed in the dedication, Dr. Balfour was a valued member of the community. On 24 May 1884 in Niddrie, a serious fire broke out in No. 7 pit which was about 250 fathoms deep. During the rescue effort, seven miners were discovered dead, one of whom was clasping in his arms his son, still alive. Information was immediately sent to the surface, and Dr. Andrew Balfour and Dr. John Balfour of Portobello, descended and gave medical assistance to the rescued miners, who were much exhausted. In 1890 an influenza epidemic hit the area and Dr. Balfour treated 146 cases of in a three week period in the Newcraighall mining village.

The fountain was listed a category C historic building on 29 April 1977.

Glossary:

  • 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
  • Finial, A sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Fret, Running or repeated ornament
  • Lunette, the half-moon shaped space framed by an arch, often containing a window or painting
  • Plinth, Flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests.

 


Tranent Fountain

Location: Tranent, East Lothian, Scotland

Poor water quality and insufficient supply was the reason for the erection of drinking fountains around the world. In 1880, the town of Tranent in East Lothian, Scotland, was served by a spring that could no longer meet the needs of the town. Although it was decided to purchase water from a source in Crichton in the parish of Cranston in Midlothian, the Burgh of Tranent could not wholly fund the project and public subscriptions including a generous donation from Mr. Polson raised the remaining funds. The fountain was erected at the west end of the High Street on the corner of Winton Place, with the official opening taking place on 10th May 1883.

The cast iron drinking fountain is a modification of number 28 and was manufactured by the Sun Foundry in Glasgow. It consists of a trough with a lamp centerpiece flanked by two boys holding upturned urns from which water once poured. The statues stood on a short pedestal that contained a button to release a flow of water from the urns into the trough. Four intertwined dolphins, symbolizing guardians of all things water related, encircled the central column as it ascended to the lamp finial. Horizontal arms offered drinking cups suspended on chains.

According to local history, the site of the fountain was a meeting place used by evangelists in the early twentieth century.

The fountain was demolished sometime after the inauguration of the War Memorial, which was erected on 9th April 1922 in the same location.

A near identical fountain is located in Durban, South Africa; and a similar fountain with a round basin is in St. Arvans, Chepstow, Wales. (These fountains have already been documented in the blog. Enter the city name in the Search field.)

 


Drysdale Fountain

Location: East Linton, East Lothian, Scotland

The Square Fountain tends to be a bit of a misnomer as it refers to the location (the Square) and not to its shape.

It was erected on the site of an old well in 1882 following a monetary donation from John Drysdale, a former East Linton native who settled in Buenos Aires, Brazil to become a farmer/rancher/businessman.

The fountain manufactured by the Sun Foundry is number 6 and was advertised as 11 feet high to the base of the centre lamp. The round pedestal base made from finely cut stone houses a dedication plate and supports a7 foot 9 inches wide cast iron fluted basin with palmette relief. A quatrefoil central column also decorated with palmette relief is flanked by four figures of young boys with pouring urns (casting number 7.) A fluted shaft emerges from a smaller basin (3 ft. 8 ins.) into which lion masks spout water. The finial consists of three lamps.

Early photographs show a decorative iron and stone balustrade surrounding the fountain.

In 1990, the fountain was listed a category B historic building.

There are similar fountains throughout the world: Currie Memorial Fountain in Durban, South Africa; St. Arvans near Chepstow, Wales; and Tranent, East Lothian, Scotland, all of which I will eventually blog.

Glossary:

  • Finial, A sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Palmette, A decorative motif resembling the fan shaped leaves of a palm tree
  • 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