A lovely sunny afternoon sitting sketching by the lake in Pukekura Park today. I decided to try
the Poet's Bridge again today.
Here is my sketch:
Pen and wash with watercolour.
The Taranaki Herald reported on 24 April, 1883 that, "the
lucky winner who drew The Poet in the Auckland Autumn Handicap
Sweepstake resides in New Plymouth, and has determined, in consequence
of his good fortune, to erect a suspension bridge across the lake in the
Recreation Grounds, to be called, we believe, "The Poet's Corner."
The lucky punter was James T. Davis, a local New Plymouth
businessman, and the sum donated was £150. In the end the bridge was a
fixed wooden structure with a span of 70 feet and has always been known
as "The Poet's Bridge".
It was designed by Mr Henry Vere Barclay and the contruction was the
responsibility of Mr Hooker. He was assisted by Mr William Campbell
(carpenter), Mr James Bellringer (painter) and Mr James Revell
(blacksmith). The bridge was officially opened on the evening of 10
March, 1884 by the Mayoress, Mrs Bayly.
In a tragic twist of fate, the donor, Mr Davis, was found drowned under the bridge in 1891.
The original bridge was rebuilt in 1938. Its colour scheme is based on the famous red-lacquered Shinkyo Bridge at Nikko,Japan.
Ref: Kete, PukeArili, George Fuller Collection.