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Ostler Memorial Fountain

A Grade II Listed Building in Bourne, Lincolnshire

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Latitude: 52.7607 / 52°45'38"N

Longitude: -0.3719 / 0°22'18"W

OS Eastings: 509964

OS Northings: 319368

OS Grid: TF099193

Mapcode National: GBR GVW.W8H

Mapcode Global: WHGLD.8V5X

Plus Code: 9C4XQJ6H+77

Entry Name: Ostler Memorial Fountain

Listing Date: 25 July 2007

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1392084

English Heritage Legacy ID: 503470

Location: Bourne, South Kesteven, Lincolnshire, PE10

County: Lincolnshire

District: South Kesteven

Civil Parish: Bourne

Built-Up Area: Bourne

Traditional County: Lincolnshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Lincolnshire

Church of England Parish: Bourne St Peter and St Paul

Church of England Diocese: Lincoln

Tagged with: Fountain

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25-JUL-07 Ostler Memorial Fountain

Memorial drinking fountain. 1860 by Edward Browning in High Victorian Gothic style.

MATERIALS: Portland stone and Aberdeen granite.

EXTERIOR: Moulded square base with sunken drinking basin. Each of the four sides of the base has a dog trough in a segmental-headed recess. Above the base are four short columns with red granite shafts and carved foliated capitals. The columns support four cinquefoil-headed arches under pedimental canopies terminating in foliated finials (one missing). From the centre of the canopies rises a spire terminating in a large foliated finial. In the triangular space above each arch is a blank escutcheon set in a circle, surrounded by carvings of thorn, ivy, maple, buttercup, wheatear, hazel, ground ivy and convolvulus. At the angles from which the canopies spring are carvings of the symbols of the evangelists: St Matthew's angel, St Mark's winged lion, St Luke's ox and St John's eagle.

INSCRIPTION: A carved inscription runs round the four sides of the base, below the granite columns: 'This fountain was erected by subscription for the use of the public in memory of John Lely Ostler, Esq., late of Cawthorpe House, 1860.'

HISTORY: The Ostler Memorial Drinking Fountain was designed by Edward Browning and erected in Bourne Market Place in 1860. Browning was a well-known Stamford architect and there are more than thirty listed buildings attributed to him or associated with him. He was the designer of the Bourne Cemetery Chapel which opened in 1855.

John Lely Ostler (1811-1859) was a prominent lawyer from a distinguished Grantham family. After moving to Cawthorpe House near Bourne in 1854, he became one of the largest land and property owners in the town. He was a dedicated Christian and philanthropist whose charitable acts included the building of a school at Dyke in 1854, the donation of land for the Infants School in Eastgate in 1856, and the provision of a site for the Bourne Waterworks Company. When he died in June 1859, the Grantham Journal reported: 'Few persons have enjoyed the praises of his neighbours and fellow townsmen for the benevolent purity of his motives more than the deceased.' The Stamford Mercury noted: 'The rich and the poor have lost a valuable and sincere friend.' Ostler was buried in Bourne Cemetery, where his grave is marked by a sculpted stone sarcophagus.

A memorial was erected to him by public subscription, in the shape of a drinking fountain in the Market Place. This was a fitting tribute because Ostler had been instrumental in establishing the Bourne Waterworks Company in 1856, which brought piped water to the town. The fountain cost £120 and the builders were John and James Sneath of Baston. The stone was carved by William Hilliam, stonemason of Stamford. Sadly the fountain was subject to continued vandalism and maintenance problems; by 1888 the finials had been mutilated and the water supply was cut off.

In 1962, the fountain was removed from the Market Place because of a road improvement scheme. It was re-erected in Bourne Cemetery, where as a memorial it has a fitting connection with the tomb of John Ostler and the Cemetery Chapel designed by Edward Browning.

Nikolaus Pevsner and John Harris, Buildings of England: Lincolnshire, 2nd edn revised by Nicholas Antram (Penguin, 1989), 173.
Rex Needle, A Portrait of Bourne, unpublished research (2007).

The Ostler Memorial Fountain at Bourne Cemetery is designated at Grade II, for the following principal reasons:
* A fine example of a drinking fountain in the High Victorian Gothic style
* The quality of craftsmanship of the stone carvings
* Group Value with the adjacent Cemetery Chapel which was also designed by Edward Browning

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