Former Location
On Clarence Esplanade, Southsea, close to the Hovercraft terminus.

The Missing Obelisk


Further Information
In his Records of the Corporation 1934 William G Gates describes this obelisk as being the boundary point for the Borough of Portsmouth in 1800. It was also said to enclose the gibbet on which John Felton's body was hung, Felton being the man who assassinated the Duke of Buckingham.
The photograph (see left) accompanying Gates' article appears to date from the 1930's and the obelisk itself seems quite sturdy and yet there is no record of what happened to it.
A report from the Court Books for the Manors of Portsea and Copnor, dated 1782, alleges that "Felton's Gibbet having been washed away or carried away, Ye Lords of Portsea and certain persons of the Borough met to replace it at the boundary".
A report from 1880 reads as follows:-
"A relic has been exposed by workmen engaged in erecting the new refreshments and retiring rooms upon Southsea Pier. It is none other than a portion of the veritable gibbet on which the body of the murderer of the Duke of Buckingham was suspended in chains upon Southsea Beach. The murder occurred in 1628. The criminal was hanged at Tyburn, but it was customary to return remains to the scene of the crime. The gibbet bears the Borough arms and a date - but the latter is the day on which it was decided that the gibbet (which was then a well-known landmark) should act as one of the borough boundaries. It is also studded with leaden bullets, from which it would appear that soldiers had been in the habit of discharging their muskets at it. The relic is now lying full length on the pier, but it will be as soon as possible once more erected upon its old site by Mr. Adams, the Borough Engineer. (Later it was replaced by an obelisk)"