Project: The Buxton Memorial Fountain

Client: The Royal Parks

The Buxton Memorial Fountain is a memorial and drinking fountain that commemorates the emancipation of slaves in the British Empire in 1834. It was designed by Gothic architect Samuel Sanders Teulon (1812–1873) in 1865. Originally constructed in Parliament Square. It was removed in 1949 and not reinstated in its present position in Victoria Tower Gardens until 1957. There were eight decorative figures of British rulers on it, but four were stolen in 1960 and four in 1971. They were replaced by fibreglass figures in 1980. By 2005 these were also missing, and the fountain was no longer working. Between autumn 2006 and February 2007 restoration works were carried out. The restored fountain was unveiled on 27 March 2007 as part of the commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the act to abolish the slave trade.

The base is octagonal, about twelve feet in diameter, having open arches on the eight sides, supported on clustered shafts of polished Devonshire marble around a large central shaft, with four massive granite basins. Surmounting the pinnacles at the angles of the octagon are eight figures of bronze, representing the different rulers of England.

Barwin carried out a thorough DOFF steam system cleaning of all surfaces, removing dirt and residue from traffic.

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