The Physic Well
Restoration of the Physic Well
Barnet's Physic Well is fed by local chalybeate waters, and has been promoted since the 16th century by doctors for its curative powers. In the 17th century a resident well-keeper was appointed to supervise the use of the spring and by 1663, Barnet's water was being sold in pubs on the Strand by the barrel. Samuel Pepys visited in 1664 to try the water, and found 'many people a-drinking'. In 1800 it was still declared that the water 'cleansed the system, cleared the skin and cured hangovers' - but by the late 19th century the site was reduced to a small iron pump and drinking cup. The present building, housing the original vault and spring, was built in 1937. This was very badly deteriorating and needed urgent repair, having been on the Heritage at Risk list for 20 years. Through its support, HOLT was the driving force to get this project off the ground, marking the launch of the restoration project with a visit from our Patron, HRH The Duke of Gloucester in May 2017. The restoration was completed the following year.