12:00PM, Monday 15 June 2020
Photo by Peter Halman
A well which was once one of the main sources of fresh water for the residents of Crazies Hill has been restored,
Rebecca’s Well, a natural spring, was used by the community to fetch pails of water for generations, up until the late nineteenth century.
In 1870, a curate from Wargrave, Rev Greville Phillimore, raised £25 to construct the building currently at the site and install a large basin to hold the water.
This was particularly helpful during the wet weather when the site became muddy.
Recent improvements, which took just under three weeks to complete, were initiated by Wargrave parish councillor Andrew Luckwell and supported by Wargrave Parish Council.
The council recognised the importance of the well, which serves as a ‘clear reminder of what village life was like 150 years ago’.
The restoration, which cost £2,840 and was paid for by a grant from The Wargrave Heritage Trust, saw local craftsman Michael Hill repair the roof, paint the woodwork and metal fittings and restore the decorative painting which was originally the work of famous Victorian landscape designer and artist Gertrude Jekyll.
The painting refers to the story of Rebecca giving water to thirsty travellers in the Bible.
Speaking of Michael’s work, Peter Halman, the honorary secretary of The Wargrave Heritage Trust, said: “I think that it [the restoration] was very well worth doing and I think the restoration was very well done by Michael Hill.
“I think it was a sympathetic restoration and it’s something that we at the Heritage Trust, we’re extremely pleased to do.”
Expressing his gratitude to Neill Pitcher, the chairman of the Trust, Dick Bush, chairman of Wargrave Parish Council, said: “We are delighted to see this important local landmark restored to its former glory. Rebecca’s Well played an important part in the lives of local people for a long time and its preservation is important for future generations.”
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