Specific Features SEARCH
Locality SEARCH
Web Sites INDEX
Malverns Worldwide News
Malvern Bookshop
British National Parks

The Singing Fountain

Friends of Malvern Springs and Wells
May 2016
Czech Republic

Picture right - The iconic Singing Fountain.
During the Spring of 2016 the Friends of Malvern Springs and Wells drew attention to the rather sad state of the Elgar Fountain on Belle Vue Terrace in Malvern, Worcestershire. This was done using editorial in the bi-monthly newsletter to which various readers responded. Suggestions on enlivening the fountain included coloured lights perhaps forecasting the weather or music and coloured lights providing a visual multi senses display in the evening. Local media fuelled the debate with front page news items.
In order to explore further such possibilities members of the Friends embarked on a field trip to Marienbad in the Czech Republic. This was in conjunction with Malvern Civic Society and took place in Mid May. The reason for selecting Marienbad was that it has a well establish "singing fountain" that provides entertainment for visitors at set times of the day.
Marienbad is a 19th century fairy land type spa resort in Bohemia and was patronised by royalty in former times. It maintains its position as a major international health spa resort with custom coming from Russia, Germany and other European states. As well as offering spa health programmes, Marienbad attracts large numbers of visitors who come for the high quality environment and entertainments. Key to this is the Colonnade and  Singing Fountain which provide a centrepiece for those doing everything from taking the waters to enjoying a concert or visiting the surrounding visitor attractions. 
The Singing Fountain itself comprises a circular pool some 18 metres in diameter. In the centre is a twelve piece sculpture representing a giant flower with polished steel. The fountain contains twelve water jet systems with more than two hundred and fifty individual jets. These can be regulated in time with music. The centrepiece has a central gushing fountain in excess of six metres in height.   In addition coloured lights add to the display sequenced with the music. When the entertainment commences the works of famous classical composers prompt the fountains into life, oscillating and erupting in time to the orchestrations. Built in 1986, this famous landmark is attended by many who gather to watch the daily display at pre-set times between May and October each year.
The following pictures and captions illustrate the findings from the investigatory research trip:
Young and old alike each find ways of enjoying the Singing Fountain against the backdrop of the Colonnade.
Members of the Malvern contingent congregate to view the Singing Fountain. 
On a Summer weekend the fountain provides an arena for local traders to sell everything from home produced foods to Czech cultural tourism souvenirs.
The fountain shortly after installation - this now vintage picture illustrates how it immediately became an attraction that visitors and locals would congregate around to enjoy the display.
 Today the fountain continues to attract vast crowds as they await it next performance.
During the day the music accompanies the rhythmic changes to the water fountains but at disk this is supplemented by stunning lighting.
Classical music and water make a charming mix of emotional stimuli but add to it coloured lighting and a fairyland backcloth in the evening and the occasion becomes a lifelong memory.
People congregate from all over the world to stroll in the park after dinner, arriving at the Colonnade in time to see the scheduled performance of the water feature at dusk.
Even at night in the rain crowds gather to watch the spectacular eruptions synchronised to the music.
Suggested recommendations for the Elgar Fountain - A structure as grand as the fountain at Marienbad is not suited to Belle Vue Terrace, Great Malvern.  However the lessons are that if you have something that will entertain, people will gather to watch and enjoy it. Not only that, it also becomes a focal point for other activities and a general meeting place. In the case of Marienbad it is moving water, lights and music that make up the attraction and such elements need to be remodelled to suit Malvern and the location in the town centre.
The Malvern Elgar fountain that looms from the gloom is a massive structure and when the fountain runs, water can gather on the road below causing a possible hazard.  The massiveness can be used to advantage but the provision of water needs to be rethought. For example water bubbling in giant bubbles may be a better consideration than an open fountain.  Lighting and music are much simpler to envisage, with modern technology LED lighting, a spectacular display that excels that of Marienbad for Belle Vue Terrace should be possible. Using buildings in the locality, laser lighting may also be a relatively easy to install. Similarly music, particularly Elgar's, is a practical proposition, even including live local musicians on set occasions.
It is recommended therefore that a detailed proposal in prepared for the Elgar Fountain using expertise that will have experience in resolving the issues raised above.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
Click website below to go to our Marienbad springs and wells web site.  

Website: Click Here


National interest - not regional
Rolling Countryside
Park or Garden
Food & Drinks
Retail Gift or Souvenir Shop
Geology & Landscape
History & Heritage
Tourism Information Point
Access By Road
Access On Foot
Free Public Access
Disabled access
Accessible All Year

(c)2024 SPAS Research Fellowship Terms & Conditions