View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms
Seen from the direction of Old Durham, the east end of Durham Cathedral dominates the skyline across the Wear Valley. The central tower is shaded, perhaps as an indication of afternoon sunshine. To its right is the bare outline of the castle, and to its right in turn what is probably the tower of St Nicholas’s Church (before its Victorian reconstruction and the addition of a spire).1 On the slopes leading up to Whinney Hill on the near side of the cathedral is the new prison, under construction since 1809 but not occupied until 1819.2 The low-lying foreground, within a loop of the Wear and formerly a racecourse, is now occupied by Durham University’s sports grounds. There is a very slight continuation to the left on folio 11 verso opposite (D40922), and a similar view on folios 13 recto and 14 recto (D12333, D12334).
‘St. Nicholas Church, Durham – A Guide for Visitors’, St. Nicholas Church, The Marketplace, Durham, accessed 19 August 2009, http://www
.stnics. .org .uk /stnics /guide .htm
‘The History of Durham Prison: The New Prison’, Crime and Punishment in Durham, 1750–1900, accessed 19 August 2009, http://www
.dur, .ac .uk /4schools /Crime /Durhamprison3 .htm