Water may flow from Buxton well once again

Well Dressing, the Market Place Well is based on the centenary of Roald Dahl
Well Dressing, the Market Place Well is based on the centenary of Roald Dahl

Wishing for a well to flow again has seen ideas flooding in for a community regeneration project.

Buxton Civic Association and Buxton Wells Dressing Festival are seeking to restore the Market Place fountain in Higher Buxton to its former glory and hope to unveil plans for its restoration soon.

Adam Bench, from the corporate affairs committee at the civic association, said: “We are continuing to look into the history of this fascinating fountain. Few Victorian cisterns could claim to have a street named after them, but this is the fountain of Fountain Street.”

In 1840 a waterworks was established by the Duke of Devonshire when fresh water was first piped to the Market Place.

Even without the water flowing, the well is still blessed every summer during the wells dressing festival.

Adam has conducted extensive research among the Chatsworth estate archives and the Derbyshire County Council pubic records office to trace the fascinating history of this Grade II-listed structure.

He said: “After 1962 the fountain was in a really bad state. The taps and cast iron or lead interior had been removed. Some inappropriate repairs had been carried out using sand and cement for capping. How remarkable would it be if we could restore this fountain to its original condition?”

Both groups want to hear people’s memories of the fountain ahead of any restoration.

Adam added: “Do you ever remember water flowing from the taps? Do you remember anyone from your past talking about when the railings were removed?”

Stories or photographs can be passed on to Adam by emailing contact@buxtoncivicassociation.org.uk.