Historic group launches plea to find Aylesbury family of life-saving reverend

A historic society is urging an Aylesbury family to reach out and help with its campaign to restore a local fountain.

By James Lowson
Thursday, 7th July 2022, 12:45 pm

The Ironbridge and Coalbrookdale Civic Society is hoping to contact the Bartlett family due to their influence in Shropshire.

Reverend John Bartlett is a beloved figure in Ironbridge he saved the lives of many residents when he channeled clean water to the village.

His move to assist families saved countless lives as previously residents were forced to drink sewage water flowing directly from the River Severn, prior to this intervention.

The fountain erected in the reverend's memory

The reverend’s life-saving intervention in the early 1800s led to a fountain being erected in his name in the village.

Read More

Read More
First look: Buckingham’s canal heritage captured in restored Grand Junction pub

It was erected in the reverend’s honour on his wife Susanna’s authorisation, shortly after his passing in 1861.

For 100 years it stood in the heart of Ironbridge, but was moved in the 1960s.

A look at the fountain back when it was in a central location

It now sits derelict in a car park, Ironbridge and Coalbrookdale Civic Society wants to return the ornament to where it believes it rightfully belongs.

The group says: “Ironbridge is a World Heritage Site and we must do our utmost to protect these kinds of monuments.”

Currently the group has launched petitions and lobbied local council groups, it hopes the fountain could be returned as early as next year.

Organisers want representatives from the Bartlett family to be present at any future ceremonies recognising the reverend’s achievements.

Through work tracing the Bartlett family tree they have discovered that his nephew grew up in Stone.

Research suggests in the past 200 years that the family has spread out and moved across the country.

The group hopes that the Bartlett’s might still be known to people in the Aylesbury area and asks people with information to contact its Facebook group here.

Another member of the Bartlett family was immortalised in history, Lt Col Charles Bartlett’s letters make up the popular book, I Shall Not Be Away Long).

Andrew Tatham compiled the letters Charles sent to his wife during World War One when he was serving on the Western Front to create an engaging firsthand account of the conflict.