National Recording Project


Detail from: Memorial to 158 Squadron by Peter W. Naylor, 2009

Allegorical Figures of Art and Literature


Type Coat of Arms , Statue , Sculpture

     The semi-circular open apex pediment over the main entrance to this red brick building has a deep relief on its tympanum depicting the classically robed female figures of Art and Literature either side of a cartouche with the inscription on it. Art holds a shield with three pears and a horizontal stripe or 'fesse', the coat of arms for the City and Borough of Worcester, of which Stourbridge was formerly a part. Literature leans on a large book and looks over towards Art. Above them at the open apex of the pediment a cupid figure holds an open book. He refers to the love that should inspire art and learning. On the plinth the cupid sits on is a garland held at either end by a ram's head. The pediment is supported on bulbous pillars. The capitals are decorated with winged helmeted heads, and the cornice with winged cherubs' heads. Above the first storey windows on the front of the building there are more heads, possibly portraits of learned men.
     The foundation stone for the library was laid on 25 February 1904 by Isaac Nash, a local edge tool manufacturer who had seen the need for a free library. The American philanthropist Andrew Carnegie granted £3,000 towards the building of the library. The reading and news room opened on 1 August 1905, with the lending library opening on 2 April 1906.



Contributor details

Contributor Role
unknown, None Sculptor
Woodward, Frank Architect

Element details

Part of work Material Dimensions
Entrance pediment Terrcotta, buff 250cm

PMSA recording information

Reference Region
WMduSTxx004 BM
General condition Good
Surface condition
  • Corrosion, Deterioration
  • Bird guano
  • Biological growth
Structural condition
  • None
  • None
Road Hagley Road
Precise location On entrance pediment and facade of Stourbridge Free Library and Technical Institute
A-Z ref 83, 2F
OS ref SO904841
Date of design 1904-1906
Year of unveiling 1905/6
Unveiling details 1905/6
Commissioned by Stourbridge Urban District Council
Duty of care Stourbridge College of Art
Listing status II
At risk? No known risk

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