Joseph Mallord William Turner

Galashiels, Bridge Place with the Eildon Hills in the Distance


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 111 × 181 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLXVIII 43

Catalogue entry

The Scottish Border Town of Galashiels is seen here in a view from High Buckholmside, above the northern bank of the Gala Water. From this road we look down on the river (which is spanned by Bridge Place), to various buildings in the town and beyond to Eildon Hill, which is four and a half miles away to the south-east. Notable structures are the chimney at the bottom-right of the page, which belongs to the Ladhope Mill (one of many woollen mills in the town in the nineteenth century), and the tower of the Old Parish Church, on the hillside above the bridge (see folio 45; D26182); neither of these structures still stand. In the foreground at the left is an isolated building built onto the slope of the riverbank, with two carriages or coaches pulled up outside. This is on the road to Edinburgh and it is possible that Turner may have arrived at Galashiels on one of these coaches and alighted at this spot.
There are similar views from closer to the bridge on folios 42 verso and 59 verso (D26177, D26211), and another made from further off on folio 44 verso (D26181). For a list of Turner’s sketches of Galashiels, and the context of his visit, see folio 42 verso.

Thomas Ardill
January 2010

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