The Whitley Pump is a community website and an unincorporated association run for and by the residents and businesses on Katesgrove Hill, Reading, UK. It is not affiliated to or funded by Reading Borough Council, the Katesgrove Community Association, the Whitley Community Development Association or any other organisation. Volunteers currently run and fund the  website.

This is the area we cover :

The Pump

Whitley Pump c. 1910

Whitley Pump c. 1910

The Whitley Pump was a hand cranked water pump built at the top of Whitley in Reading, at the junction of Whitley and Christchurch Streets. It was originally a horse-watering station, and it remained a local meeting place until the 1970s when it was demolished to improve traffic flow. A replica of the pump, together with its distinctive trefoil basin, was installed in 1999 at the centre of the roundabout that now mediates the junction.

This website was named in honour of the pump’s role as a local landmark and meeting place for the people at the top of Whitley.


Katesgrove ward is an area to the south of central Reading with a population of about ten thousand. It stretches from the A329 inner distribution ring road (IDR) in the north to Rose Kiln Lane in the south, and from the Kennet and Avon canal in the west to Northumberland Avenue and Kendrick Road in the East. It includes industrial and retail estates, private and public housing, Katesgrove and Christchurch primary schools, three doctor’s practices, two churches, several chapels and a Hindu temple. It takes about half an hour to walk to Reading town centre and the central railway station.


Redlands ward is a roughly triangular area to the east of Katesgrove, with Cemetery Junction at one corner, the London Road campus of Reading University at another and the Hexham Road estate at the southernmost point. It has a similar size population to Katesgrove. It borders the university’s Whiteknights campus and is home to many students.

The Top of Whitley

The Top of Whitley is an informal name for the top of the hill immediately to the south of Reading town centre on the Basingstoke Road, a hill sometimes mapped as “Southern Hill” or “Katesgrove Hill”, and on very old maps as “Bob’s Mount”. This busy neighbourhood contains businesses, shops, major roads, conservation areas, flats and terraced housing and is loosely centred at the Whitley Pump. It now marks the northernmost extent of the Reading suburb of Whitley and is mostly contained within southern Katesgrove and Redlands wards which borders the Whiteknights campus of Reading University.

Spring Gardens
1932 OS Map

Spring Gardens, 1923

Spring Gardens is a small and mostly residential neighbourhood with an estimated population of two thousand. It lies immediately to the west of Whitley Street, bounded by Milman Road to the south and Waldeck Street to the north. The neighbourhood is named after the Spring Gardens road that used to run through it. The road itself now only exists as a stub at the end of Milman Road, and was named for the once abundant water supply and gardens in the area.