A Pier is another name for a pillar, so pier caps or gate post finials are the structures that sit on top of the gate post, both to protect the post from the ingress of water and also as a decorative function.
From Elizabethan times, a lot of effort was put into the gateway of an important house, it was the feature that set the scene for the house and its occupants. Elements from the family crest were sometimes utilised on the gate finials, such as lions, leopards or mythical beasts. The Pineapple is another emblem found with gate finials, symbolising wealth and hospitality. Other common shapes for 18th and 19th Century gate finials, include variations of the ball finial, sometimes with additional acanthus decoration, lidded urns, finials with flambeau tops, baskets of fruit and eagles. As well as these highy elaborate examples, many households would opt for more restrained stone pier caps, usually of pyramid form.
We have a good range of reclaimed pier caps for sale to suit most budgets. We have grand antique carved stone examples, Victorian terracotta, lead finials, simple pyramid caps and weathered composition stone finials from the 20th Century. We occasionally also get 19th Century cast iron pier caps.