Llangattock water fountain

button-theme-slavesLlangattock water fountain

This fountain was installed in 1881 for the village’s new supply of pure drinking water. As the plaque by the fountain records, the project was funded by George Frederick William Miles of Llangattock Park.

The location chosen for the fountain was opposite the village’s National Schools. You can see the former school buildings and headmaster’s house across the road. Water was conveyed to the fountain in iron pipes over about 1km from Ffynnon-y-Catwg.

George came from a Bristol family which amassed a fortune from slave ownership – see below – and spent generously on public improvements in Llangattock. He largely funded a new wing for the village schools and contributed £800 towards the church’s restoration in the 1880s.

George served as a local magistrate and on the Crickhowell Board of Guardians, which oversaw the local workhouse. He died in 1886, aged 66, and was initially buried in Shirehampton, Bristol – near the Miles family home at Leigh Court. Seven years later his remains were moved to Llangattock churchyard. The Miles Memorial Church Hall was named in honour of the family.

George was one of eight sons of Philip John Miles, who had two brief stints as an MP. After Britain abolished slavery in 1833, Philip was awarded over £47,000 compensation (about £4m in today’s money) for the loss of more than 2,000 slaves, mostly in Jamaica but also in Trinidad. The freed slaves received no compensation.

Philip’s sons were educated at Eton College. From there, George joined the 7th Hussars, a cavalry regiment which was then based in Bristol. The 7th Duke of Beaufort, one of the main owners of land around Llangattock, had a connection with that regiment.

With thanks to David Denison. Sources include the Centre for the Study of Legacies of British Slave-ownership and the National Library of Wales

Postcode: NP8 1PH    View Location Map

More about George Miles on David Denison’s Miles Hall website