Newton began to exhibit regularly at the Royal Academy summer shows in 1923 and he continued to send paintings for several decades. His chosen subjects were views of London, mostly in the St John's Wood, Hampstead, Kentish Town and Paddington areas. He was particularly fond of including a stretch of water in his compositions and often chose back-street views of canals, as here. He liked the slightly forlorn Regency and early Victorian terraces that faced the canals, and gave them a curiously uninhabited look. He once wrote: 'There is beauty to be found in everything, you only have to search for it; a gasometer can make as beautiful a picture as a palace on the Grand Canal, Venice. It simply depends on the artist's vision.'