Photo Credit: Chimp Photo Club
Stanley Park, Across from the Rowing Club
Located in Stanley park near the Vancouver Rowing Club, this drinking fountain memorial was erected a year after Queen Victoria’s death. The memorial, constructed with Nelson granite at the top of a flight of steps, was unveiled by the Premier Sir Richard McBride in 24 May 1906 (the Queen’s birthday). The project was funded by school children selling black edged memorial cards that recorded the Queen’s birth, coronation and death along with a gala concert.
On each side of the memorial are pillars embedded with a crest. The shield on the right hand side is the Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom and may be used only by the Monarch. On the left, the shield displays entwined serpents; the coat of arms for the City of Vancouver until 1969, designed by James Blomfield.
The drinking fountain flanked by stone seats is embedded in a granite column. The bronze bas-relief was designed by James Blomfield and cast in England. The left facing cameo of Queen Victoria’s head is the same image used on the 1897 Diamond Jubilee medals and medallions. Beneath the inscription is a lion with flowing mane that spouts water into a demi-lune basin. The original drinking cups suspended by chains are no longer present.
James Blomfield (born James Alfred Bloomfield) was born in 1872 in Maidenhead, England. He studied architecture and worked as a junior draftsman before emigrating to Canada with his family in 1887. In 1889, they moved to New Westminster, where he, his father Henry, and his younger brother Charles opened British Columbia’s first art glass business. The Bloomfields designed, fabricated and installed numerous stained glass projects, including windows for the new Parliament Buildings, Government House and Christ Church Cathedral in Victoria. In 1898, they opened an office in Vancouver. In 1902, James married Mary Diamond of Belleville, Ontario, and in 1907 they left Vancouver.
Memorial Drinking Fountains Wordpress, COV Public Art Registery