This unique medieval construction was erected by the Friars Minor at Colwell Head, which later occupied the southern end of the grounds of Nazareth House on the east side of lower Hill Lane. It is a stone-domed structure over Colwell Spring, which was given to the Franciscans by Nicholas de Barbeflet, Lord of Shirley Manor, in 1290. Water was piped from Colwell to the Water House in what is now Commercial Road. The use of this supply was granted to the town in 1311 and by the 15th century it supplied nearly all of the town's water needs through a grid of public conduit houses. The Colwell Spring remained the major source of ground water for over 500 years. It is Grade II listed.

Conduit Head

Image Unavailable

Photograph, 1941

see also

further reading:

'Work at the Conduit Head, Southampton' by Peter N Davies, in Hampshire Field Club and Archaeological Society, Section Newsletters, New Series, no. 10, Autumn 1988, pages 9-12


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