Marsh Award for Excellence in the Conservation of a Public Sculpture or Fountain
This Award is run in partnership with the Public Monuments & Sculpture Association (PMSA) which recognises an individual or group responsible for the restoration of a public sculpture for the benefit of the wider public.
The PMSA aims to heighten public appreciation of Britain's public sculpture, and to contribute to its preservation, protection and promotion.
The 2016 winners are Frederick Gibson and Croft Building and Conservation Ltd. for Dudley Market Place Fountain
The fountain was originally presented to the town by the Earl of Dudley, and draws on Classical, Renaissance and Baroque forms of ornament. There are many symbols of prosperity and wealth displayed across the fountain, including a cornucopia of fruit and figures indicating mining and agriculture which were important sources of wealth in 19th century Dudley.
Water originally ran from the mouths of two dolphins and two horses into low drinking troughs designed for use by cattle and horses, and from two lions’ heads into smaller drinking basins intended for human use. After a period of neglect during which the drinking troughs were filled with soil and flowers grown in them, the stonework was cleaned in 1965 and water laid on again. However, prior to the project by Croft Building Conservation Ltd and Purcell UK, the fountain had not worked for thirty years and was still deemed to be at risk.
The restoration of the fountain for unveiling in November 2015 was undertaken by Frederick Gibson (the architect) and Croft Building and Conservation Ltd (the main contractor). It was a multi-disciplinary project and there were several related items of work were sub-contracted, however the main body of work was undertaken and designed by the architect and contractor.
The Public Monuments and Sculpture Association
70 Cowcross Street
020 7490 5001