The general consensus seems to be strongly in favour of somewhere in the town centre. After all, that’s where it was designed for – originally in the Market Place, then revised to Hall Place. As well as providing pure drinking water at a time when it was a luxury for many people in the town, it strengthened the distinctive character of Hall Place by giving it a striking central focus. That is, until it was removed to Ayscoughfee Gardens in 1954 to make way for a traffic scheme.
Our latest information is that a recommendation on the fountain’s re- siting will figure in a wider review of the town centre. This will be carried out by a working group which Policy 25 of the new Local Plan requires to be set up to support the enhancement of the town centre.
Meanwhile, Council Chairman Rodney Grocock has spoken warmly of wishing to see the fountain back in the centre. At the District Council’s AGM in May this year he said:
“It is my ambition to seek to reinstate the Drinking Fountain within Spalding town centre. I am, however, keen to ensure that this happens in conjunction with a wider consideration of town centre improvements. I am also unsure that reinstatement within Hall Place is necessarily the most appropriate location given the changes that have taken place to the town over the past century and more.”
After referring to Policy 25, he went on:
“I would hope the councillors would support me in proposing that officers embrace the opportunity, when implementing this new policy and considering the public realm within Spalding, to reintroduce the Drinking Fountain to a prime location in the heart of the town centre.” (Council AGM Minutes, 16 May 2018.) Councillor Grocock has the Society’s warmest support.