North Road Drinking Fountain

In memory of Louis Samuel, a drinking fountain was erected in September 1907 in North Road, adjoining the open space in Cathays Park in front of the Law Courts and City Hall. Louis Samuel was the first Jewish Justice of the Peace in Cardiff and he died in 1906.[1]

The fountain was described as 18 feet 8 inches in height, and of red granite, with four drinking basins on grey granite columns.[2] A report in the Weekly Mail before the fountain was erected, printed a photograph and quoted the inscription: "In Memoriam. Louis Samuel, Died 14th January, 1906. First Jewish Justice of the Peace of the City of Cardiff. Presented by his brothers."[3] It was placed on the site of an earlier fountain also presented by the Samuel family, and in March 1907 the Town Hall Committee agreed that this original fountain would be moved to Roath Park.[4] Referring to the same meeting, the Western Mail reported that Mr. Isaac Samuel and his brothers "had chosen another fountain of a more imposing design (to replace the one already erected near the 'bus terminus in North-road), which they were prepared to present to the city, provided the one already erected be removed to Roath Park, and re-erected there on a site to be mutually agreed upon, both fountains to bear inscriptions applying to Mr. Samuel's late parents." It is probable that the original fountain was presented in memory of the Samuel brothers' parents, who died in the 1890s.

A drinking fountain was shown on the 1920s and 1940s Ordnance Survey maps opposite the Castle where North Road and Kingsway join. On the 1950s map it was no longer shown.

Sources of Information

  1. Registration of death Cardiff 1906 quarter 1, volume 11a page 232
  2. The Weekly Mail Saturday September 28th 1907 page 9
  3. The Weekly Mail Saturday December 22nd 1906 page 7
  4. South Wales Daily News Saturday 9th March 1907 page 5
  5. Western Mail Saturday 9th March 1907 page 8