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North Melbourne Drinking Fountain (Aka Henderson Drinking Fountain, And Hotham Ornamental Fountain)

Walter MacFarlane
Cast-iron drinking fountain
Corner of Errol and Queensberry Streets, North Melbourne

In 1877, Thomas Henderson presented this drinking fountain to the people of Hotham (now North Melbourne) to mark the end of his term as mayor. Designed by Walter MacFarlane and cast by his prominent Glaswegian Saracen Foundry, it has an imposing circular canopy richly decorated with cast-iron lacework.

The fountain was originally sited in the roadway at the intersection of Errol and Queensberry Streets, but was moved in 1889 to allow for the construction of the new cable-tram tracks. In 1917, it was moved to the footpath, but without its bluestone steps and iron railings. In 1972, a vehicle collided with the fountain, damaging its wonderful canopy. Consequently, the following year it was moved to its current and safer location outside the Town Hall. Prior to the mid-1960s, the fountain's drinking spout was replaced with a modern Danks 'bubbler', but in 2001 a duplicate of the original was created - including the small figure of a kangaroo - based on MacFarlane's original drawings and on moulds from similar fountains.

Thomas Henderson, the great-grandson of the donor, attended the ceremony for the fountain's restoration.

City Of Melbourne