NS3975 : Gardens in Levengrove Park

taken 4 years ago, near to Dumbarton, West Dunbartonshire, Great Britain

Gardens in Levengrove Park
Gardens in Levengrove Park
This area is at the northern end of the park. It is shown from another angle, and in another season, in NS3975 : Beautiful gardens at Levengrove Park.
Levengrove Park :: NS3974

The lands of Levengrove were originally part of an area named Ferrylands, so called because, before Dumbarton Bridge was built in 1765, the River Leven was crossed by means of a ferry. John Dixon, a Dumbarton merchant, acquired Levengrove in 1805 from Richard Dennistoun of Kelvingrove (in Glasgow).

The Dixons built Levengrove House (demolished c.1880), whose former grounds make up much of what is now the park. In 1885, Levengrove Park, 32 acres in area, was gifted to the town of Dumbarton by Dr Peter Denny and John McMillan (son of local shipbuilder Archibald McMillan), the expense to them being £20,000.

The park contains the ruins of St Serf's Church – Link – anciently the parish church of Cardross. That church was at one time part of a cluster of buildings, a clachan, that is marked as "Little Kirktoun" on the Pont/Blaeu map of the Lennox. The ruined church was later used by the Dixon family as a burial place: see Link (in a Geograph article).

The Kilmahew Fountain

This fountain in Levengrove Park — Link — is so called because it was originally in the grounds of Kilmahew House, which was later the site of NS3578 : St Peter's Seminary, Cardross. It was gifted to the town of Dumbarton by Captain Burns of Kilmahew, and erected in the park in 1902. A programme of regeneration of the park was underway in late 2017; the fountain, long out of use, was flowing once again in April 2019.

The following detailed description of the fountain and of the circumstances that led to its being erected here is taken from the Lennox Herald issue of 26-Apr-1902; note that the "Kilmahew Castle" mentioned there is the mansion house that is generally called Kilmahew House, rather than the NS3578 : Kilmahew Castle, now part folly, that stands elsewhere in the grounds:

"Recently some improvements were contemplated at Kilmahew Castle grounds, Cardross, and these necessitated the removal of a handsome ornamental fountain. Captain Burns offered to gift the fountain to the town. The offer was cordially accepted by the Town Council, and the fountain has now been erected in Levengrove Park."

"Altogether it stands about seven feet high. The outer basin, which has a rim of freestone, is 19½ feet in diameter, with concrete sides and bottom. Four ornamental vases, 2½ft. high and cut in freestone, stand on each side. The second basin is 11ft. in diameter, and is constructed of white freestone, moulded. The third basin is 4½ft. in diameter, and is cut from a single block of freestone, with the exception of the gargoyles, which are inserted. This basin sits on four ornamental columns of polished granite, with capital and basis of freestone, the former carved."

"The crown piece is in the shape of a feathery fern, and contains 8 down jets, the water from which falls into the top basin, and one upright jet which, with mechanical appliances, can be used in a variety of ways. The sprays fall into the topmost basin, and the water passes through the gargoyles into the centre of the four circles of the second basin."

"The whole design, as we have said, is handsome, and the gift adds a valuable feature to the park. The site chosen by the Parks Committee, in the centre of the flower garden, is one of the best available, and the work of re-erection has been carried out in a tradesman-like manner by Mr McNab, builder, Cardross, at the sight of Mr Briggs, the Burgh Surveyor. It is expected that in about a fortnight the water supply will be connected to the fountain."

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NS3975, 588 images   (more nearby search)
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Date Taken
Monday, 2 January, 2017   (more nearby)
Thursday, 12 January, 2017
Geographical Context
Park and Public Gardens 
Primary Subject of Photo
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NS 3923 7511 [10m precision]
WGS84: 55:56.5239N 4:34.5447W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NS 3925 7513
View Direction
Southwest (about 225 degrees)
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Image Type (about): geograph 
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