150th Anniversary of Launceston Water SupplyPrint Page Print this page

Photographs supplied by John Huth
The plaque commemorates the 150th anniversary of the commencement of the Launceston water supply in 1857.

George Babington was the Town Surveyor, and in 1856 he was instructed by the council to prepare an estimate of transferring water from the river to the creek. The council adopted the idea and advised the Government of its choice. W H Clayton was appointed to make a survey on behalf of the Government. By 2nd December 1855, the Council’s Water Committee was able to report on W H Clayton’s plan to supply water from St Patrick’s River. 

Mr W R Falconer, the Director of Public Works, Hobart, was appointed to superintend the construction of the water supply scheme. He also provided engineering services. In July 1856, he wrote to the Mayor that “there would be no difficulty in introducing water to Launceston from St Patricks River and Distillery Creek. The creek storage was to be 341 feet above high water and water would be piped to the town using iron pipes.” Estimates were about ₤28,000. The estimates included ₤500 for a fountain at St Johns Square, now called Prince’s Square.  Except for the reservoirs, the works were completed in 1857, with the opening ceremony and opening of the sluice gates performed by the Mayor, Ald. Henry Dowling, on 23rd October, 1857. The fountain in Prince’s Square was purchased from a Parisian firm exhibiting at the London Exhibition. The fountain was provided by the Council to celebrate the arrival of the new water scheme. It arrived in Launceston in February 1858 and was immediately erected by Mr Huttley. It was not however, until 1859 that the fountain was in full operation. 


Address:Elizabeth & Charles Street, Princes Park, Val d`Osne Fountain , Launceston, 7250
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -41.440494
Long: 147.140417
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:Government
Actual Event Start Date:23-October-1857
Actual Event End Date:23-October-2007


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Tuesday 23rd October, 2007
Front Inscription

Launceston Water Supply

150th Anniversary

This plaque celebrates the 150th Anniversary of the beginning of Launceston`s reticulated Water Supply by the Launceston City Council in 1857.

It was presented to Council on the 23rd October 2007, by Esk Water - the current owners of the oldest parts of the scheme.

Liz Swain  Chairperson  Esk Water Management Board
Ivan Dean  Mayor  Launceston City Council

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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