The Rutherford Memorial, possibly the most ironic monument in Newcastle, it commemorates John Hunter Rutherford, a Scottish doctor and educational reformer of the mid 1800s, and a strong advocate of temperance. Today the area is a playground for revellers, young and old, drawn by the sheer weight of pubs, and the inscription on the monument – ‘water is best’ – is unlikely to challenge their belief that ‘Bacardi Breezer is best’. Erected by the Band of Hope Union in memory of J.H. Rutherford, Presbyterian minister and Temperance campaigner. Sandstone steps, red sandstone fountain with pink granite basin. ’Water is Best’ ironic, perhaps in this long established popular drinking location.
Look above the Pop World pub and you can see the small white crescent moons which are a reminder of its past as an old coaching inn. Other notable features of the area include the wonderful tiling of the Beehive pub (spot the bees!); the Old George pub (walk down the alley and notice the building opposite which was once a stable. The pub has been in existence since 1690); and Balmbras (now a brash 80s fun pub, but in the 19th century where the Geordie anthem. “The Blaydon Races”, was first sung).