These Listed Grade 1 gate piers were installed by Thomas Ripley in the early 1750s to commemorate Admiral George Anson’s epic circumnavigation of the globe in 1740 in his warship HMS Centurion. Although the crew of his fleet was decimated by scurvy, Anson famously captured a Spanish treasure galleon en route for Manila, laden with gold and silver.
The terrestrial and celestial globes each weigh nearly seven tons. The terrestrial sphere on the south side is inlaid with copper bands showing lines of latitude on the earth’s surface, while the sphere on the north shows 24 celestial meridians representing different days of the year.
Over the years the Portland stone has eroded, leaving the copper bands exposed above the surface. During the restoration project the fixing of the bands will be renewed and we hope to replace some original details, now missing, such as the route of Anson’s voyage on the terrestrial globe, and many stars on the celestial sphere.