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Duthie Park, Temperance Drinking Fountain, Including Urns

A Category C Listed Building in Aberdeen, Aberdeen

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Coordinates

Latitude: 57.1313 / 57°7'52"N

Longitude: -2.106 / 2°6'21"W

OS Eastings: 393683

OS Northings: 804493

OS Grid: NJ936044

Mapcode National: GBR SBB.SF

Mapcode Global: WH9QX.M0CW

Entry Name: Duthie Park, Temperance Drinking Fountain, Including Urns

Listing Date: 29 February 2000

Category: C

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 394141

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB46785

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Aberdeen

County: Aberdeen

Town: Aberdeen

Electoral Ward: Torry/Ferryhill

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire

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Description

James Hunter, 1883. Polished granite temperance drinking fountain. Circular plinth set on flagstones, tooled inscriptions reading "In commemoration of the advance of temperance under the auspices of the Aberdeen Temperance Society in the year 1882" and "Thou givest them water for their thirst, IPH 9-20"; polished pink granite basin, with 3 granite columns supporting grey granite canopy, spherical finial. Square pink granite plinths supporting pink granite urns to N, W and E of fountain.

Statement of Interest

B-Group with Duthie Park Bandstand, Bowling Pavilion, East Lodge, Gates, Gatepiers and Boundary Walls, Footbridge over Upper Lake, Fountain, Fountainhall Cistern House, Gordon Highlanders Celtic Memorial, Gordon Highlanders Obelisk Memorial, Hygeia Statue, McGrigor Obelisk, and Taylor Well (see separate listings). The site of the Duthie Park was originally a marshy piece of land covered in gorse (or whin, hence the nearby "Whinhill Road), it was known as Pulmoor, now "Polmuir". In 1850 Arthurseat (the villa on the site) and its surrounding land was intended to be developed as a Royal Garden to view the trains crossing the new viaduct to and from London via Ferryhill. However, in 1881 Miss Charlotte Duthie of Ruthrieston purchased the site and gifted it to the City of Aberdeen for a public park. It was decided it should be "available for all classes of citizens, that it should have a broad expanse of grassy sward upon which the young might indulge in innocent frolic and play..." (Duthie Park, p37). The park was designed by William R McKelvie of Dundee, and the first sod, of the 47 acres of land, was cut on the 27th of August 1881, the park being officially opened in 1883. The temperance drinking fountain was included in the original plans for the Duthie Park, its aim being to provide uncontaminated water as an alternative to alcohol. In the 19th century tea and coffee were still expensive luxuries, and therefore were not attainable by the working classes, beer and spirits, however, were available and affordable. This led to the siting of temperance drinking fountains in public places, such as the Duthie Park, or alternatively near public houses, so as to tempt people away from the evils of drink. They were also usually accompanied by an uplifting verse, such as the one on the Duthie Park fountain.

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