The Williamstown Botanic Gardens contains many historic features that have been carefully restored for future generations.
Alfred Thomas Clark Statue
This year the Alfred Thomas Clark statue celebrates 130 years of watching over the Williamstown Botanic Gardens. Surrounded by mature Moreton Bay figs (Ficus macrophylla) and situated in the centre of the gardens, the statue carved in Carrara marble by Enrico Lucchinelli, was unveiled at a public ceremony on Saturday 25th July, 1891 in front of a crowd of 300 people. The event was widely reported in papers of the day noting that Mr Clark was a well-respected businessman and politician.
The work was sculpted in Italy from a photograph and funded through public subscription.
Mr Clark (1845-1888) served as the representative for Williamstown in the Legislative Assembly of Victoria from 1871 to 1887 and founded the Williamstown Advertiser newspaper in 1874. Alfred T Clark died in 1888 at sea aboard R.M.S Oceana, near Colombo on his way to England.
The statue was restored by an expert conservator in 2007 to repair and replace parts of the statue that incurred damage over the years and the surrounding fence was reinstated using photographic evidence and helped by the discovery of the location of remnants of the original fence posts still in the soil.
FOR 150 years, the Williamstown Botanic Gardens has been a popular spot for walks, picnics, weddings or reading on a lazy afternoon.
The 150th anniversary provides opportunities to take the Gardens forwards for the next 150 years.