In fact the picture above is a painting by Chris Fothergill, but a very close copy of an ink and watercolour painting of the Market Place by an artist, Frederick Stockdale. The original is in a museum in Devizes, Wiltshire, and came to light last year, untitled, but has since been traced to Northleach, and the artist verified.
The marvellous thing about it is it reveals for the first time what the old Market Hall (the building on column supports to the right) actually looked like, with the High Market Cross in the immediate foreground. It has long been known that the Market Hall existed and it has shown on old plans of the town, but until now there has been no image of it, as it was demolished in the 1820’s, which pre-dates even the earliest photography. As the rest of the Market Place and the Church is so accurately and well observed, even the pub sign showing a white horse (the name of the pub then, which is now the Sherborne Arms), then it is almost certainly a faithful rendition. The poor condition of the hall with its windows filled, and crumbling edges is quite apparent.
I was very excited to have such a new side of Northleach revealed, and couldn’t wait to copy the painting for myself. The artist’s use of pen and watercolour style is so similar to my own that it came easily to produce a copy, and I believe at a glance one would be hard put to tell the difference. Originally I was going to keep it for myself, but someone in the town persuaded me to sell it to them, and then another person persuaded me to paint another copy for them! After which I decided I would produce a small edition of fine art copies of 100 numbered and signed Giclee prints on watercolour paper.
I’m offering them at £79.00 fully framed with a single washlined double mount in a quiet gold frame. (Unframed mounted and packaged £49.00)
- Actually I did paint it once more for myself so I would have an original on my wall, but with a seasonal difference! See below: