Norwich (click on photograph to bring up bigger/better version).
rare wooden pump with a cast iron handle and spout tucked away in Websdale's
Court, a tiny alleyway off Bedford St., Norwich. Thanks to John Hurst for the
photo on the left.
Markings: Indecipherable letters and numbers on the spout.
|In a quiet courtyard off Elm Hill, Norwich.
Markings: What looks like "SLIM" on both sides of the handle, up by the fulcrom.
|A hefty pump - about 7' high and with an 8"
external diameter barrel - situated at the bottom of the graveyard at St. John
Maddermarket, Norwich. (The point has been made by others that downstream of a
graveyard might not have been the optimum location to pump untainted water, but
let's hope that it had a very deep borehole.) Closer inspection of the spout
shows a small hole just behind the bucket hook: it has been reported that in at
least one case such a hole was provided to allow a stream of water to flow
upwards to form a drinking fountain.
John Hurst re-visited the location in 2014 and found that the pump has been damaged - see bottom right - a chunk has been lost from the spout.
Markings: "SHALDERS PATENT NORWICH", "POWERLINE" and "[?] INCH BARREL"
|This superb edifice is tucked away behind a wall
and obscure alleyway backing onto Westwick St., Norwich. It's known variously
either as Gibson's or Gybson's Conduit or Pump, and also as St. Lawrence's
Well, and has an interesting history. It's not in
its original position, and has lost all its mechanical components with the
exception of an iron handle - and even this is not in its original position
with respect to the rest of the structure. So was it a pump, a fountain, or
simply a flamboyant tap? Maybe all three at different stages of its life. If it
was indeed a pump, then it might just be the oldest dated pump in the UK, and
for this reason alone it deserved to be restored. Since I took these
photographs it has indeed been restored.
In 2011, Gybsons Conduit (owned by the Norwich Preservation Trust) underwent a magnificent restoration by Universal Stone Ltd., (see lower right) and won a 2011 Norwich Society Design Award for the conservation work. Well done, Norwich.
Three panels set in the stonework contain verses of dedication, as follows, although some letters were obscured and difficult to decipher at the time:
IN SORTE AS YOWE SEE
FROM A SPRING IS BROUGHTE
THRE-SKORE FOOT AND THRE
GYBSON HATH IT SOWGHTE
FROM SAINT LAWREN'S WEL,
AND HIS CHARG THIS WROWGHTE
WHO NOW HERE DOE DWEL
THY EASE WAS HIS COSTE, NOT SMAL
VOUCHSAFIED WEL OF THOSE,
WHICH THANKFVL BE HIS WORK TO SE
AND THERE TO BE NO FOES.
|A smaller panel to the left is now blank, but in an old photo it can be seen to have had the letters ROB ERT and a sun motif, whilst another on the right still shows the letters GYB SON and the same sun motif - possibly a rebus? A small carved shield contains the date 1578.|
|Set above is a coat of arms, carved in stone and painted, which I think are those of Elizabeth I, flanked by two badges carved in stone - a rose and a crowned chained portcullis - both of which surely must represent the House of Tudor. The faint words "VIVAT REGINA" can still be made out, painted on the background.|
|At the front of a row of coach houses in Ferry Lane, within the
Cathedral grounds in Norwich. The cap, handle and operating rod are all
missing, and a hook has been fixed to the pump fulcrum to hold back the nearby
coach house door.
Markings: "J. TYLOR & SONS, 2 NEWGATE STREET, LONDON EC"
Manufacturer: J. Tylor, London.