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Description: Hubert Fountain
Date Listed: 4 June 1976
English Heritage Building ID: 180065
OS Grid Reference: TR0053442259
OS Grid Coordinates: 600534, 142259
Latitude/Longitude: 51.1445, 0.8656
5344 VICTORIA PARK
TR 04 SW 3/276
Fountain with cast iron sculpture, 1862.
MATERIALS: cast iron sculpture set in a pool with concrete walls.
DESCRIPTION: The fountain is of cast iron, with white-painted figures (well weathered in 2006). Its topmost jet and bowl are supported by four cherubs standing on a plinth decorated by the masks of ancients. Below are four bowls supported by two gods and two goddesses which appear to represent four continents, these having attendant cupids with conches and cornucopia. Below this grotesque mask waterspouts eject the water into the basin. This is circular, and of concrete. The fountain is approached from the south-east by a short flight of shallow steps with short concrete vase balusters which lead to a concentrically paved forecourt-like space (steps and paving not of special interest). A bronze plaque on the wall of the basin records ON JULY 23 1912./THIS FOUNTAIN WAS PRESENTED TO/THE TOWN OF ASHFORD BY MR. GEO. HARPER/25 YEARS A MEMBER OF THE URBAN DISTRICT COUNCIL. CHAIRMAN 1907-10./IT WAS SHOWN AT THE EXHIBITION OF 1862 AS THE HUBERT FOUNTAIN.
HISTORY: Victoria Park, Ashford, is a small municipal park of typical Victorian design with tree-lined curvilinear walks, bandstand and shelters. It has one outstanding feature, the large and exuberant Hubert Fountain of 1862, installed in the east part of the park in 1912 having been given to the town, as an inscription records, by George Harper, a long-time member of the UDC. The fountain is of French manufacture; the inscription records that it was shown at the International Exhibition (or Great London Exposition) of 1862 as the Hubert Fountain. A local history book which reproduces photographs of the fountain records that it was moved to Ashford from Olantigh, a house near Wye (Kent) that burnt down in the late C19 or early C20.
SUMMARY OF IMPORTANCE: Victoria Park's Hubert Fountain was exhibited at the 1862 Exhibition, and having originally been erected elsewhere, was given to the town and installed in 1912. It is a typical mid C19 exhibition piece, with a pyramidal arrangement of cast iron cherubs, ancients, gods and goddesses rising out of a surrounding basin. The fountain is approached by a shallow flight of steps with balusters to either side. Life-size cast iron stags (no longer present) reclined on the plinths at the bottom of the steps when the fountain was first re-erected.
This text is a legacy record and has not been updated since the building was originally listed. Details of the building may have changed in the intervening time. You should not rely on this listing as an accurate description of the building.
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.