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Last Updated: Tuesday, 16 November, 2004, 15:41 GMT
Rude fountain restoration award
Bolsover Castle and Venus fountain
The restoration took over nine months
English Heritage has been highly commended at an award ceremony for the restoration work on the country's so-called rudest fountain.

The award is for a facelift on the 17th century Venus fountain in the grounds of Bolsover Castle, Derbyshire.

The fountain features naked human figures cavorting alongside animals.

Andrea Buckingham, visitor operations manager, said: "All the staff are pleased that our very own 'Derbyshire' Venus has got the praise she deserves."

Britain's rudest

She added: "The sculptor did a fabulous job of recreating the statues of Roman emperors, heraldic beasts and little boys which surround Venus herself.

"They do have to be viewed to be appreciated as the fountain is considered to be the rudest in England."

The work, which took place over nine months in 1999, involved taking the statue apart for a complete renovation and recreating the 20 statues which were stolen from the fountain 200 years ago.

It also saw the replacing of the ancient lead pipes inside the fountain and underground, allowing the fountain to work for the first time in almost a century.

In order for the sculptor to recreate the 20 statues, English Heritage studied period documents and fragments of the original fountain to get the most accurate picture of what was once there.

Public enjoyment

Jill Channer, restoration expert on the judging panel, said: "The spectacular restorations of these dramatically different fountains have transformed the sound and sensation of the space they occupy, enhanced the public's enjoyment of the place they were designed for, and set a new standard in the re-creation of historic water features."

The awards ceremony is being held at the annual general meeting of the Fountain Society at the Naval Club, London at on Tuesday.

The Fountain Society champions the cause of fountains, cascades and water features of aesthetic merit for public enjoyment.

It also works to promote the provision of new fountains, and to secure the restoration of those that have fallen into decay.




SEE ALSO:
Crumbling castles to be restored
11 Aug 04 |  North Yorkshire
Heritage staff vote to strike
18 Feb 02 |  England


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