I spent a couple of interesting hours this week roaming the streets of North Melbourne. I found some great old sign pics for the 'top secret' project. There are three places opposite the North Melbourne Town Hall to have coffee. I chose the busiest one, the one where all the criminal looking types seem to get their caffeine fix, the ones who are yet to graduate to Lygon Street.
It had slipped my mind, but emblazoned on a kind of annex to the town hall was Hotham Free Library. North Melbourne used to be known as Hotham.
Opposite where I was sitting was this very elaborate drinking fountain. It was donated by a previous mayor of Hotham, a Scottish immigrant called Thomas Henderson, when his term ended.
Even back then we relied on imported goods, and the the fountain was cast in Glasgow. It was originally installed right in the middle of Queensberry and Errol Streets, and then moved a couple of times before ending up in its present location outside the modern post office within the old town hall.
The fountain was restored by the City of Melbourne in 2000.
Of course back in days of old, it would not have had chrome bubblers, but very hygienic cups suspended on chains. In fact what is there now is an absolute fake and not at all an original drinking fountain. It is the fine print.