Friday, January 14, 2011

Montefiore Fountain, Bridgetown undergoes final stages of restoration

The Montefiore Fountain, dating back to 1864 and located opposite the Coleridge Street Library, is one of the many fine examples of unique Barbadian built heritage that can be found in Bridgetown and is included in the area which has prompted the bid for the nomination of Bridgetown and the Garrison as a World Heritage Site. Sponsored by the National Art Gallery Committee,  conservation efforts are nearing completion.  The Puerto Rican objects conservator, Mr. Angel Santiago-Torres is seen here working with his Barbadian assistants. 

Apart from finalizing the restoration of the inscription around the base and repairs to the tessellated elements, Mr.Santiago-Torres worked on the repairs and in some case complete replacement (shown here) of the finials which were the last parts to be installed. To achieve this goal, he created a mould from an old finial from his last visit and manufactured reproductions which were then installed at the summit of the piece.

This fountain, previously located at Beckwith Place and moved to its present location in 1940, was given to the city by John Montefiore as a memorial to his father, John Castello Montefiore who died from Cholera in 1854. The Ministry of Transport and Works and the National Conservation Commission are assisting with this important restoration activity.

Setting the finial in place

Adjusting the new finial before setting it in adhesive.

Two old finials which have been restored and set back in place.

Mr. Angel Santiago-Torres holds a brand new finial, manufactured from a mould he took on a previous visit.

Mr. Santiago-Torres re-constructs a section of the base of the finial which is missing.

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