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Nicholson Square Gardens

A small but long-established area of greenspace on the South Side of Edinburgh, Nicholson Square Gardens lies between Nicholson Street and Potterrow. Managed by the City of Edinburgh Council, the garden was refurbished in 2008, with new pathways, trees and planting.

The garden contains two notable landmarks; a cast-iron fountain and the Brass Founders' PIllar. The fountain was the work of the Sun Foundry of George Smith & Co in Glasgow c.1866 but has not been in use for many years. The Pillar comprises an unusual square column in bronze, surmounted by the figure of Tubal Cain, the biblical metalworker. The coats-of-arms of the Royal Burghs of Scotland, together with the arms of Scotland, England, Ireland and the UK, and the Brass Founders themselves. Commissioned and executed by the Brassfounders of Edinburgh and Leith for the Edinburgh International Exhibition held in The Meadows in 1886, it was designed by Sir James Gowans (1821-90). After the Exhibition, the column was moved to Saughton Park where it featured in the Scottish National Exhibition of 1908. The following year it was gifted to the City of Edinburgh and installed in its present location. The column blew down in a gale on the 14th January 1968 but was restored and re-erected by the staff and students of Telford College, to be unveiled on 17th July 1976 by Councillor John Gray in the presence of members of the Recreation and Leisure Committee the Edinburgh District Council.

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