Tag Archives: Victoria Park

Emanuel Emanuel Memorial Drinking Fountain

Location: Portsmouth, Hampshire, England

Called an officious little Jew by the Hampshire Telegraph in 1849 during a period of latent antisemitism, Alderman Emanual Emanuel was a leading force in reforming the town of Portsmouth. Although he refused to take the mandatory Christian oath of office, his focus nonetheless was a fearless spokesman for the advancement of the community. He was a leading force in many important projects i.e. securing water and gas supplies, promoting the railway to London, securing land for Victoria Park (now known as the People’s Park), creating piers and construction of the Esplanade. He became the first Jewish Mayor of Portsmouth in 1849.

He died in 1888 and was celebrated with a huge public funeral. His children donated a memorial drinking fountain to the Portsmouth Corporation five years later. It was erected at South Parade where it remained from 1893 to 1934. When it became an obstacle to motor traffic, the structure was relocated to the western end of the Canoe Lake. The Fountain was restored in 1962, 1991 and 2005, and was recorded as a Grade: II listed building on March 18th, 1999.

The Fountain is design #126 manufactured by the Coalbrookdale Company in Shropshire. The structure is seated on a square plinth with canted corners. A granite base supports the rounded polished granite pedestal bearing the 5ft 4ins high bronze figure of Temperentia by John Bell. The pedestal offers two taps for drinking which originally contained cups suspended on chains. The bronze statue with wings close to the body has her head lowered as she watches a dove seated on her right hand drink from a water-lily in her left hand.

An inscription on the back of the base reads: In Memory Of Emanuel Emanuel, Alderman, J.P. / Who Was Mayor Of Portsmouth 1866-67 / This Fountain Was Given To The People Of Portsmouth / By His Son And Daughter / Barrow Emanuel And Lady Magnus / Aldn. R. Barnes, Mayor 1893.

A cast iron canopy over the drinking fountain is supported by four columns; the base of each is gilded with the letters CBD (Coalbrookdale). The columns are sculpted in the form of a vine; internal and external capitals are gilded water lilies with acorn finials (originally these finials were four glazed lanterns). The vines connect in an arch on each of the four sides, and above each arch are intersecting vines and water-lilies.

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
  • Finial, a sculptured ornament fixed to the top of a peak, arch, gable or similar structure
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests.
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Breadalbane Drinking Fountain

Location: Aberfeldy, Perthshire, Scotland

A drinking fountain in the town donated by the Marquis of Breadalbane was erected in the centre of The Square until it became an obstruction to traffic. It was relocated to Victoria Park and later returned to its original location following realignment of traffic flow.

Design number 8 from Walter Macfarlane & Co.’s catalogue was manufactured at the Saracen Foundry at Possilpark in Glasgow, the most prolific architectural iron founders in the world. Seated on an octagonal plinth the structure is 9 feet 6 inches high and consists of four columns, from the capitals of which consoles with griffin terminals unite with arches formed of decorated mouldings.

Rope moulded roundels within each lunette offer shields for memorial. . A crane is visible on the east side, and the Breadalbane coat of arms on the north and south sides. A dedication on the west side is inscribed: This Fountain / Was Erected / And Various Improvements Made / To The Town Of Aberfeldy / By Gavin, Marquis Of Breadalbane / As A Memento / Of The Cordial Reception Accorded To Him / & / Lady Breadalbane / By The Inhabitants / On Their First Visit After The Restoration / Of The Marquisate / July 1885.

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 is surmounted by an open filigree dome, the apex being a crown with a pattée cross.

Under the canopy stands the font (design number 7) 5 foot 8 inches high. The basin which has a scalloped edge and decorative relief is 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 offer drinking cups suspended by chains. The terminal is a crane.

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.

In 2002, the drinking fountain was listed a Category C historic building.

Glossary

  • Capital: The top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • Console: a decorative bracket support element
  • Filigree, fine ornamental work
  • 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
  • Plinth, flat base usually projecting, upon which a pedestal, wall or column rests
  • Roundel, A small circular decorative plate
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal

 


Cardiff’s Canopy Fountains

The Samuel family of Cardiff was a major benefactor to the city of Cardiff, Wales, with the donation of as many as 10 drinking fountains. Not all of the fountains were cast iron, and of the few surviving structures none are operational and exist only as canopies. The cast iron canopied drinking fountains from Walter Macfarlane &Co.’s catalogue were manufactured at the Saracen Foundry in Glasgow, Scotland.

ROATH PARK The first drinking fountain donated by the Samuel family was erected in Roath Park in memory of the matriarch and patriarch of the Samuel family, Moses and Gertrude, who died in 1893. An additional fountain was presented to the Council in 1913 by the family and formally accepted by the Lord Mayor at a ceremony in the Recreation Ground on September 29th 1913. It was located at the south end of the park near Penylan Road. Both fountains shown on Ordnance Survey maps for the 1900s through to the 1920s are no longer visible in the 1940s.

VICTORIA PARK Lewin L. Samuel (their son) also died in 1893 and is memorialized at two different locations. The fountain at the north east corner of the lake in Victoria Park was erected in 1908. The canopy was restored and relocated to the centre of a formal flower bed at the south end of the park in 1986. A dedication shield is engraved with inscription; In Memoriam / Lewin L Samuel / Aged 39 Years / Died 1893. Presented To / The City Of Cardiff / In The Year 1908 / By His Brothers / In Affectionate / Remembrance.

GRANGE GARDENS The Samuel brothers donated a drinking fountain to the city in memory of their sister Mrs. Rachel Joseph. Erected in Grange Gardens, it was presented by Rachel’s daughter in 1909 and accepted on behalf of the Council by the Lord Mayor. During World War II the metal canopies were removed from the fountains to assist the war effort.

A replica funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund was created from the original canopy design owned by Heritage Engineering. It was installed in 2001. However, it incorrectly contains the same inscription as the fountain in Victoria Park. In addition, an incorrect griffin model with outstretched wings was applied during restoration (this model was associated with canopy number 8 which had 4 columns and the outstretched wings lay on the arches.) The pattern for canopy 21 should contain griffins with wings tucked in to the side.

HAYES In the year 1908 a fountain dedicated to Harry Samuel was erected in front of the Central Library at the Hayes, Cardiff. Miss Lena Samuel, niece of Harry, formerly handed over the fountain to the corporation.

BUTETOWN A cast iron drinking fountain was also located at Butetown Docks, known locally as Tiger Bay, at the junction of Bute Place and Bute Crescent. As the area deteriorated in the mid 1970s, the fountain was abandoned and became derelict. In one of the photographs it is evident that part of the canopy, one of the columns and the original font are missing. The Welsh Government’s Historic Environment Service removed the fountain’s status as a protected building in 1993.

A plaque attached to the fountain once displayed a rhyme warning sailors of the dangers of drink and loose women in the many pubs surrounding Cardiff docks:
Stop Seamen and take a draught, there be danger here both here and aft,
And learn to shun that wicked craft who looks at yonder door.
The compass that is stationed here will from danger keep you clear,
And show you how to steer, on this dreadful shore,
Heed not the music or the sport, here in the alley or the court.
They’ll both entice you to a port, beset with rock and reef,
And ere from there you cannot return, they’ll overhaul the cash you earn,
Using you from stern to stern and bring you all to grief.

Casting number 21 (18 feet by 4 feet) was supported by eight columns with griffin terminals which were positioned over capitals with foliage frieze above square bases. The highly decorated cusped arches were trimmed with rope mouldings which displayed lunettes with images of cranes or optional memorial shields. 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.

Doves and flowers offered decorative relief on the circular, open filigree, ribbed dome. The internal capitals were floral ornament. The structure was surmounted with a vase and spiked obelisk finial.

There is little photographic evidence to confirm the font design. However, the traditional font for this canopy pattern was casting number 7. The 5 ft 8ins high font was a single decorative pedestal with four pilasters and descending salamander relief supporting a basin 2 ft 6 ins in diameter. The interior surface of the scalloped edge basin was engraved with decorative relief, and a sculptured vase was terminated by the figure of a crane. Four elaborate consoles supported drinking cups on chains.

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.

Glossary

  • Capital, the top of a column that supports the load bearing down on it
  • 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
  • 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
  • Lunette, the half-moon shaped space framed by an arch, often containing a window or painting
  • Obelisk, a tall, four-sided, narrow tapering monument which ends in a pyramid-like shape at the top
  • Pedestal, an architectural support for a column or statue
  • Pilaster, a column form that is only ornamental and not supporting a structure
  • Terminal, statue or ornament that stands on a pedestal