Tag Archives: Kent

Rebekah Foord Memorial Fountain

Location: Strood, Kent, England

A memorial drinking fountain was unveiled on Coronation Day, 28 June 1864, on the Rochester Esplanade to commemorate the life of Mrs. Foord, a benefactor of the poor. It was funded by public subscription and remained on the Esplanade until 1906 when it was relocated to Rochester Castle Gardens. In 1912 it was transported to the Recreation Ground, Northcote Road in Strood where it remained until 1930. Its current whereabouts is unknown.

An article in the Chatham News described the celebration of the opening of the fountain and ended with a poem;
Rebekah’s Fountain
Behold! a humble monument, we lift
To acts of one , to whom fond mem’ry leans;
A Font of flowing water: ‘tis the gift
Of God; t’obtain which man but finds the means.

Drinking fountain number 8 from Walter Macfarlane & Co.’s catalogue was manufactured at the Saracen Foundry at Possilpark in Glasgow. The structure was 9 feet 6 inches high and consisted of four columns, from the capitals of which consoles with griffin terminals united with arches formed of decorated mouldings.

Rope moulded cartouches within each lunette hosted the city and arms of Rochester and the Foord family, and an open bible displaying a verse from St. John’s Gospel chapter 4 verse 14, ‘Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst.’ An inscription read; This Drinking Fountain Is Erected By Voluntary Contributions In Grateful Remembrance Of Mrs. Rebekah Foord Of This City Who During Her Life Was Foremost In All Works Of Usefulness And Kindness To The Poor. A.D. 1864 .

On two of the sides provision was made for receiving an inscription using raised metal letters; whilst on the other two sides was the useful monition, Keep The Pavement Dry. Civic virtues such as temperance were often extolled in inscriptions on drinking fountains. The structure was surmounted by an open filigree dome, the finial being a crown with a pattée cross.

Under the canopy stood the font (design number 7) 5 foot 8 inches high. The terminal was a crane. The basin (2 feet 6 inches in diameter) which had a scalloped edge and decorative relief was supported by a single decorative pedestal with four pilasters and four descending salamanders, a symbol of courage and bravery. A central urn with four consoles offered drinking cups suspended by chains. The fountain was operated by pressing a button.

Symbolism was popular in Victorian times. Griffins are symbolic of guardians of priceless possessions, salamanders display bravery and courage that cannot be extinguished by fire, and cranes are recognized as a symbol of vigilance.


  • 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
  • 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
  • Griffin, winged lion denotes vigilance and strength, guards treasure and priceless possessions
  • Lunette, the half-moon shaped space framed by an arch, often containing a window or painting
  • Pattée cross, a cross with arms that narrow at the centre and flare out at the perimeter
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Pilaster, a column form that is only ornamental and not supporting a structure
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal



Faversham Town Pump

Location: Faversham, Kent, England

Before the arrival of a piped water supply in 1864, local households were dependent for their supply of water on pumps and wells. The first pump on the site of the Market Place next to Guildhall, provided by a local benefactor in 1635, was replaced by the present elaborate cow tailed pump in 1855.

FAVERSHAM_1900_books google

Circa 1900

Although this pump design is illustrated as #8 in the catalogue of George Smith & Co., the company did not exist until 1858, and it is therefore likely that the pattern was purchased from an existing iron foundry (possibly Dartford Iron Works; as the owner, John Hall, also owned a paper mill and a gunpowder factory in Faversham.)

Design #8 from the catalogue of George Smith & Co. was described as a drinking fountain and lamp combined. This octagonal shaped drinking fountain (cow tailed pump) is a single pedestal with attic base and inset arched panels which offered space for dedications. Entablature with bolt consoles sit beneath an ogee cupola with panels of fleur de lys motif. Yoke maintenance arms that originally supported the lamp-lighter are still in evidence. The original finial was a six sided glass pane lantern which no longer exists. The floral relief decorated column is capped with a ball finial. A small trough set into the base of the structure was for the use of dogs.

The structure was recorded as a Grade II historic building on 3 August 1972.


  • Attic base, a column base with two rings
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Cupola, a small, domed structure on top of a roof.
  • Entablature, moldings and bands which lie horizontally above columns
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Ogee, curve with a concave
  • Yoke maintenance arms, the bars near the top of a street light which supported the lamplighter’s ladder

Sidney Cooper Weston Fountain

Location: Folkestone, Kent, England

The Sidney Cooper Weston Fountain was erected by public subscription in 1897 in remembrance of Weston who was a Christian philanthropist, a tireless temperance advocate and a member of The Society Of Friends (Quakers). An obituary published to mark his death summarised his achievements as a professional photographer who numbered among his patrons members of the Royal Family and many of the nobility.

The fountain which originally stood at the Leas Promenade was used as a public drinking fountain until it was moved to its present location at Wear Bay Road circa 1920 to allow for the construction of the War Memorial to the dead of WWI (unveiled on 2nd December 1922). The fountain was restored in 1981 by the New Folkestone Society and repainted in 2006. However, it was vandalised only three years later. A donation from Councillor Roland Tolputt in 2010 funded the repair of the pump and filters.

The drinking fountain is a variation of Andrew Handyside & Co.’s design #16 manufactured at the Brittania Iron Works. The structure is seated on a circular plinth. A quatrefoil base forms a shallow trough in which the central pedestal stands. Four piers support putti holding water urns while seated on a block of floral decoration. A dedication panel is attached to the flat surface of a pier. Erected / 1897 / By Public Subscription / In Memory Of / Sidney Cooper Weston / Of This Town / Christian Philanthropist / And / Gospel Temperance Advocate / Born Dec 29th 1842 / Died Jan 25th 1893 / Psalm 41.1 Blessed Is He That / Considereth The Poor.

Within the recessed canted corner of each pier is a shield with roundel surmounted by a fluted demi-lune basin into which a mascaron of Poseidon spouts water. Each mascaron is bound on the side by a decorate pilaster in scroll form and bordered above with a fluted cornice into which is an engraved block; Restored / By The / New / Folkestone / Society / 1981.

The bulbous base of the fluted column is decorated with acanthus leaves. Two decorative bands lead to the enriched Corinthian capital which supports a central lamp with two additional lamps on elaborate consoles.


  • Acanthus, one of the most common plant forms (deeply cut leaves) to make foliage ornament and decoration
  • Canted corner, an angled surface which cuts of a corner
  • Capital, the top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • Console, a decorative bracket support element
  • Column Corinthian, a fluted shaft with flowers and leaves at the capital.
  • Cornice, a molding or ornamentation that projects from the top of a building
  • Demi-lune, half moon or crescent shape
  • Fluted, a long rounded groove
  • Mascaron, a decorative element in the form of a sculpted face or head of a human being or an animal
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Pier, a platform extending over water
  • Pilaster, a column form that is only ornamental and not supporting a structure
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests.
  • Putto (plural is Putti), a figure in a work of art depicted as a chubby male child, usually nude
  • 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
  • Roundel, a small circular decorative plate

Moses Fountain

Location: Hythe, Kent, England

The drinking fountain inset to a wall in Red Lion Square was donated in 1886 by Mayor Thomas Judge. It was originally installed next to the Town Hall on Stade Street in the wall of Dr. Fagge’s house which was later converted to a bank. When the bank was rebuilt in 1911 the fountain was relocated to Market Square (renamed Red Lion Square).

The fountain was cast by Coalbrookdale Company of Shropshire from a design by William and Thomas Wills of Suffolk. The brothers were noted sculptors in the mid 19th. century and best known for their designs of drinking fountains.

The cast iron frame is in the form of a stylized shield with curved and winged edges. The top part of the shield, in the form of an ogee arch, contains a sculpture of winged cherubs resting upon clouds. Beneath the cherub is a legend, He Opened The Rock And / The Waters Gushed Out / They Ran In The Dry Places / Like A River / Psalm CV 41.

A recessed round arch contains the drinking well and the name of the sculptors, Wills Brothers Sculpt London. Water was dispersed into the basin via a spigot concealed behind a clam shell decoration situated in the interior of the arch. The foundry’s name is engraved on the edge of the basin, Coalbrookdale Co. Beneath the well is an engraving, Presented / To The Borough Of Hythe / By / Thos Judge Esq / Mayor / 1885.6.

Each side of the arch is decorated with reeds and foliage. On the left side is a robed male figure with long beard standing contrapposto. In his left hand is a rod resting on the cusp of the arch. This is a depiction of Moses striking the rock to release gushing water. On the right of the drinking well is the robed figure of a woman offering a basin of water to a naked child.

A recessed trough at ground level offered overflow water to dogs and small animals.

In 1965 public awareness of water related diseases prompted the removal of the metal cup by the Health Department and the supply of water being withdrawn.


  • Contrapposto, stance where one leg bears the weight and the other leg is relaxed
  • Ogee arch, an arch with a concave apex