El Alamein Memorial Fountain, the focal point of the Fitzroy Gardens in Kings Cross, was designed by Robert Woodward after he won a design competition held by Sydney City Council in 1959.
Named to commemorate the deeds of the 9th Division of the Australian Infantry Forces (AIF) during World War II & designed to resemble a dandelion, the Fountain takes the form of a globe with brass pipe & column and radially arranged metal tube stalks. A specifically constructed nozzle has been fitted to each of the extremities of the stalks.
The dandelion has since been copied for other fountains all over the world, but it’s still considered to be a modernist design representative of Kings Cross and Australia’s creativeness.
In 2011, the council of the City of Sydney commenced necessary repair, conservation and restoration works to the El Alamein Fountain in order to halt further deterioration. The restoration works followed Woodward’s design intent and bought the fountain back to its original glory.
The team involved in the restoration works would include City Plan Heritage, Dennis Williams of E L Williams P/L (son of the original maker of the fountain) and Jane van Hagen (architect and daughter of Robert Woodward.)
At the commencement of the project, City Plan Heritage provided a Heritage Impact Statement and a Statement of Environmental Effects as part of the DA documentation for the restoration of the fountain.
In 2012, City Plan Heritage was engaged to prepare a Conservation Management Plan to ensure the ongoing preservation of the fountain, document the restoration, establish an appropriate management structure, conserve the outstanding values of the fountain and establish an opportunity for improved, active and more effective interpretive media actions to increase awareness of the values associated with the El Alamein Fountain.