GARDENING: A BIGGER SPLASH

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The Independent Culture
A selection of fountains that can still be seen at this time of year.

CHATSWORTH, Bakewell, Derbyshire (01246 582204): late 17th-century cascade with newly restored Cascade House (plus water jokes) by Thomas Archer. Emperor Fountain designed by Joseph Paxton in 1843 is highest gravity- fed fountain in the world (88m). Open until 29 Oct, 11-4.30.

CLIVEDEN, Taplow, Maidenhead (01628 605069): Thomas Waldo Story's flamboyant Fountain of Love boasts a giant shell, winged cupids and half-naked women. Open 11-6 until end Oct; 11-4 Nov and Dec.

HESTERCOMBE HOUSE, Cheddon Fitzpaine,Taunton, Somerset (01823 337222): supreme example of Gertrude Jekyll/Edwin Lutyens partnership. Two spouting masks (on East and West Rill terraces) mark Edwin Lutyens' passion for the half-globes and spheres of pure geometry. Open Mon to Fri, 9-5.

LEIGHTON HOUSE, 12 Holland Park Road, London W14 (0171-602 3316): the home of Lord Leighton, Victorian painter; the Arab Hall displays Koranic inscriptions, lattice screens and Isnik tiles. Hard water on the tiles has reduced the fountain to a piddle, but still an Orientalist delight. Open Mon to Sat, 11-5.30.

CASTLE HOWARD, York (01653 648444): boasts the impressive Atlas Fountain (above, operating at weekends). It was acquired at 1851 Great Exhibition and installed in the south parterre. Open until 29 Oct, 10-4.30.

TRAFALGAR SQUARE, London WC2: Lutyens's chunky mer- men, women and children and dolphins ; photographed to death but still worth stopping for.

WADDESDON MANOR, Waddesdon, near Aylesbury, Bucks (01296 651211): Giuliano Moz-ani's 18th-century group of Pluto and Proserpine, caught tango- style among braying horses and spouting mermen. Open till 22 Dec, Wed to Sun, 1-6.

WESTMINSTER ABBEY, the Little Cloister, London SW1: A perfectly proportioned gem installed in 1871 (and forming the logo of the Fountain Society). En route to College Gardens which open Tues and Thurs, 10-4.

CHALICE, 123 Buckingham Palace Road, London SW1: By William Pye. Massive, reflecting stainless steel bowl suspended on steel cables in cathedral- like space. Water spouts upwards and down the base of the stem.

THE SPIRIT OF ENTERPRISE, Centenary Square, Birmingham: three bowl dishes resting on a stepped Portland stone base, signifying Enterprise, Industry and Commerce. By Tom Lomax, one of the judges in the Marsh Fountain of the Year Award.

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