Stone piers in St John’s Lodge Gardens

1894, by Sir William Goscombe John RA (1860-1952)

The cherubs astride the piers hold the coat of arms of John Crichton Stuart, the 3rd Marquess of Bute (1847-1900), who acquired the lease to the house in 1899. He wanted a garden fit for meditation and this was designed by Robert Weir Schutz. The sculptor, Goscombe John, was born in Cardiff, working on the rebuilding of Cardiff Castle when he was 14 years old (his father was woodcarver there). He came to London in 1882 to study at the South London School of Art and settled in Kilburn. His work can also be seen on Horseguards Parade with the sculpture of Viscount Wolseley and the Sir Arthur Sullivan memorial in Victoria Embankment gardens.

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