The Historic Rondebosch Fountain of 1891 has at last been restored to the community. The original ornamental Victorian Rondebosch Fountain/Horse and Dog Watering Trough, with lamppost, was the first electric street light in South Africa. It was donated to the community by surveyor and railway pioneer, George Pigot-Moodie, on 25 Sept 1891.
Refreshment Between Cape Town and Wynberg
It was made of cast iron and consisted of a circular drinking trough supported on horses’ legs, with the central post top hexagonal lantern. Four decorated brackets suspended metal cups on chains for people to drink from the sprouting water, while horses drank from the trough and dogs from smaller basins at ground level. The fountain was a popular halfway stop between Cape Town and Wynberg.
The First Electric Street Light in South Africa
The first electric street light in South Africa was turned on 25 April 1892. It was initially powered by George Pigot-Moodie’s private Power plant, until a municipal Power plant on the Liesbeck River was completed.
Damaged by Drunken Driver
The Rondebosch Fountain was badly damaged a drunken driver in 2015. For over 5 years, the municipality failed to repair, or restore, the iconic Rondebosch Fountain.
Private Initiative Restores Rondebosch Fountain
Just in time for Heritage Day, 24 September, Heritage Castings, assisted by the Simon van der Stel Foundation, managed to finally obtain official permission, to, at their own expense, restore the historic Rondebosch Fountain to the community. It was unveiled on Wednesday, 23 September, just in time for Heritage Day.
A Cherished Historic Landmark
It is as close to the specifications of the original fountain, in its original colours and details, as exact as it was when it reached the Cape from Scotland. This is a tribute to private initiative and enterprise. The iconic Rondebosch Fountain has great historic value and is cherished by all residents and visitors to Rondebosch. A very well done and heartfelt, Thank You to all involved in this initiative.
“Those from among you shall build the old waste places; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; and you shall be called the Repairer of the Breach, the Restorer of Streets to Dwell In.” Isaiah 58:12
Dr. Peter Hammond
P.O. Box 74 Newlands 7725
Cape Town South Africa
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