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Bandstand Queen's Park - Dresden, Nr Longton, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England, UK.
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Poole/Freeman
N 52° 58.578 W 002° 08.451
30U E 557688 N 5869979
Quick Description: A plaque to commemorate the opening of the bandstand in Queen's Park, Trentham Road in Dresden, near Longton.
Location: West Midlands, United Kingdom
Date Posted: 4/23/2018 8:52:36 AM
Waymark Code: WMY527
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member Bon Echo
Views: 2

Long Description:
The park's official name is Queen's Park but it is also known as Longton Park. The land was given by the Duke of Sutherland, and work began in 1887. The total cost was estimated to be £6000, which was mostly met by voluntary subscription. The park was officially opened on July 25th 1888 by George Granville William Sutherland Levison-Gower, the third Duke of Sutherland.

The park has four entrances, two on Trentham Road and two on Queens Park Avenue. The coordinates given are for the main entrance to the park located on the corner of Trentham Road and Queens Park Avenue.

Queen's Park is Grade: II* listed, and is famous for its trees, horticulture and lakes. It has a very individual character and is one of the city's heritage parks.

Historic England describe the park as follows;
"Summary of Garden
A public park of 1887 with lakes, winding tree-lined carriage drives and paths, shrubberies, and much original furniture including a bandstand.

Reasons for Designation
Queen’s Park, Longton, opened in 1888, is designated at Grade II* for the following principal reasons: * Date: the park is a good example of a later Victorian municipal park in an industrial town; * Design: its design is essentially unchanged from its original layout of the 1880s; * Designer: the park was designed and laid out by the Duke of Sutherland’s Land Agent John H Garrett; * Historic interest: the park was the first public pleasure ground in The Potteries; * Structures: the park retains various C19 park structures, many locally manufactured; * Planting: good mature trees survive, with tree-lined paths and drives.

Although said to have been considered by the Duke of Sutherland as early as 1879, work on the Queen's Park began only in 1887, the Queen's Golden Jubilee year, on forty-five acres (c 18ha) given by the Duke to the Borough of Longton. Longton was then expanding from the straggling village of Lane End, among the developers being the Duke himself with the suburb of Florence immediately to the north-east of the park which was built up in the 1860s. The park, the first public 'pleasure ground' in the Potteries, opened in 1888 when the Rev Salt praised it as an example of the 'best practical solution of the problem between the landed aristocracy and socialism'. The total cost was estimated to be £6000, which was mostly met by voluntary subscription. Some £1000 of the total was given by the mayor, the local manufacturer John Aynsley, who had been instrumental in bringing the project to fruition.

GARDENS AND PLEASURE GROUNDS The park is roughly rectangular, and is c 700m long from north-west to south-east by 300m wide. Its layout has remained virtually unaltered since it was laid out. Three main zones can be identified. The half of the park to the south of the Superintendent's Lodge, essentially the west half of the landscape, is more densely and formally laid out, with an intricate curving network of tree-lined carriage rides and broad paths running between shrubberies and lawns with formal bedding schemes. Iron benches of several different designs are placed at frequent intervals along the paths and drives, at intersections of which are 2m high cast-iron posts; at least two partially retain their 'Carriage Drive' finger signs. These and the benches were supplied by the Longton foundry of Edwards & Jones. Near the centre of this zone is a cast-iron (by Dean & Lowe, of Stoke) octagonal bandstand. East of this, and close to Queen's Park Avenue, are two C20 hard tennis courts. On the east edge of the zone, 100m south of the Carlisle Street gates, is the central feature of the park, an elaborate stone clock tower. North-east of the clock tower, and on the south-east side of the Carlisle Street gates, is a circular, later C20, children's playground with apparatus enclosed within a hedge.

In the southern part of the zone, and between the lakes and the bandstand, are three roughly circular bowling greens, each with a shelter; two of those are probably of the late C19, and one of the C20.

The east half of the park is far more open, with only one main drive running east/west across its centre in addition to those along its north and south sides. The trees along the centre drive are especially striking, with copper beech alternating with green-leaved species. On the south edge of the zone, adjoining the embankment of the former railway, mature poplars mark the site of a now disappeared children's playground.

The park was designed and its laying-out supervised by John H Garrett, the Duke of Sutherland's land agent. Some 15,000 trees and shrubs were donated by the Duke of Sutherland and other patrons, and the lakes stocked with coarse fish - fishing was allowed from 1890, and there were boats for hire. In 1889 sixty cast-iron 'Keep off the Grass' notice plates were purchased. The park staff then comprised a uniformed Superintendent, an Assistant, and six labourers. Swings and other children's facilities were a later introduction." SOURCE: (visit link)

Recreational Facilities include;
A bandstand, bowling green and three bowling pavilions, tennis courts, skate park, two football pitches, children's play area- one for toddlers and another for juniors, fitness equipment and a lake with fishing controlled by Fenton and District Anglers.

The octagonal bandstand by Dean & Lowe, of Stoke, is a cast-iron structure with a brick and concrete base and a set of wooden steps leading up to the inside.
The gazebo/ bandstand was opened in 1899 by Sampson Waters Esq. of Falmouth and is used for various activities, festivals, and band performances,
A photograph (c1895 - 1905) of Longton Borough Prize Band taken in front of the bandstand, can be seen at the following link; (visit link)

The plaque located on the side of the gazebo/bandstand is inscribed as follows;

"Sampson Waters Esq. was born at Whitehall Scorrier in 1805. He found employment in the late 1820s at the Minas Gerais mine of Gongo Soco as a subordinate agent with the Imperial Brazilian Mining Company. In 1831 he returned to Cornwall managed mines near Hayle until 1839 when he travelled to Chile under contract to the British-backed Copiapó Mining Company as a Mine Agent with Chief Agent Captain John Trebilcock who had been in charge at Gongo Soco. Waters became the Principal Agent of this company in 1847 when Trebilcock returned home and after returning to Chile from a short break in Cornwall, he assumed the post of Managing Director in 1849, the only Agent ever to have done so.

Having held shares in numerous mines, he decided to commence business on his own in mining and relinquished his position with the Company in 1852. With a few other gentlemen Waters purchased the sett of a silver mine, the prosecution of which exhausted all his savings without obtaining any return. Fortunately he had earned the trust of those around him who placed money at his disposal allowing the enterprise to continue; a rich vein of silver was cut and dividends paid to investors.

Waters then began to diversify his capital into the lucrative import-export business, entering into a contract with two other Cornishmen, Thomas Waitt and Samuel Lean, to form the company Waitt, Lean and Co. This firm imported articles of British commerce and exported metal to England, and soon became the established leader in the field at Copiapó.

When Lean and Waitt dissolved the partnership in 1858 upon their return to Cornwall, Waters took over, becoming the most prominent merchant in Copiapó. For many years he was the largest exporter of copper ore from Chile to Britain, his mines alone enabling him to ship 800 tons of copper ore monthly, averaging 25 per cent produce. Most of the revenue he derived came from the famous Descubridora and San Pedro Mines near Tres Puntas in which he employed many Cornishmen. Widely respected by Cornish and Chileans alike, the Chilean government appointed him to be the principal arbitrator in connection with their entire mineral property, at that time the only foreigner ever to have been entrusted with this office.

Estimated to have been two or three times a millionaire, Don Sampson as he was known, returned to Cornwall with his fortune in 1860 leaving his only son John in charge of his business interests there. He purchased a residence near his childhood home at Whitehall and in 1863 bought Gyllyngdune Mansion and estate at Falmouth for the princely sum of £10,000. He became a key investor in many Cornish enterprises. It was due to the efforts of Waters that Wheal Rose was set to work as he held 1,400 out of 2,000 shares in this mine. He was also one of the largest shareholders in Dolcoath and many other local mines, as well as being the principal proprietor in the Redruth Tin Smelting Company and the Cornwall Arsenic Works at Bissoe and Hayle and had an interest in a gunpowder works at Porthtowan. He also invested around £1,000 in the Falmouth Docks Company and was a shareholder in the Falmouth Hotel.

Waters was twice married; his first wife, Peggy Trebilcock, whom he wed at Gwennap in 1826 and by whom he had a son and three daughters, died while he was in Chile. In 1861 he married Miss Tremayne. He was a devoted Wesleyan, giving large sums of money for chapel building and renovation and was appointed by the Lord Chancellor as a magistrate for Falmouth, an office his untimely death prevented him from carrying out. He died at Gyllyngdune on 9 November 1866 aged 61 and was buried in a granite vault at Falmouth Cemetery. His funeral, one of the largest ever witnessed in west Cornwall, was attended by many of the notable gentlemen, merchants and captains of the Cornish mining industry." SOURCE: (visit link)

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What was opened/inaugurated?: Bandstand

Who was that opened/inaugurated it?: Sampson Waters Esq.

Date of the opening/inauguration?: 1899

Website about the location: [Web Link]

Website about the person: [Web Link]

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